Tenth Circuit Dismisses Lawsuit Due to Mediation Confidentiality Violation

In Hand V. Walnut Valley Sailing Club, No. 11-3228 (10th Cir. April 4,2012) plaintiff is a former member of defendant sailing club. Soon after plaintiff complained that his storage shed at the club didn’t comply with the American with Disabilities Act, plaintiff’s membership to the club was revoked. In response, plaintiff filed suit in federal court. The court sent the parties to mediation.

No settlement followed the mediation. Instead, plaintiff sent an email to at least forty-four club members (and others) relating all the details of the mediation. A written district court rule expressly required anyone involved in court-ordered mediation to keep all such information confidential.

The club sought dismissal of the lawsuit as a sanction for violating mediation confidentiality and the district court agreed. The appellate court affirmed the district court’s judgment.

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by Victoria VanBuren
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