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Arbitration

Arbitration Info

Arbitration is like a trial but less formal. There is no jury. Arbitration helps to keep costs down and to shorten the time to get cases resolved. The parties select the arbitrator, who hears the evidence and decides the case. Unless otherwise agreed, the arbitrator will work for $125 per hour pursuant to the court's arbitrator compensation schedule. The parties are responsible for paying the arbitrator's fee and must pay a portion of the overall cost before meeting with the arbitrator. The arbitrator makes findings and issues a binding award. A party can appeal an arbitration award and have the case decided by a judge or jury at a trial but may be responsible for additional costs if the party does not do better on appeal. The arbitration process and appeal rights may be different if the parties have a contract that requires them to submit their dispute to arbitration.

The court has an arbitration program pursuant to ORS 36.400 for the following cases:
  • Civil actions claiming less than $50,000 in money or damages, and
  • Domestic relations suits where the only issue is how to divide or dispose of property.

Arbitration Panels

The court has three arbitration as follows:

Peter Chamberlain
Richard Cowan
Kevin Crawford
Arthur Cummins, Jr.
Robert Custis
K. William Gibson
Phillip Gilbert
Erica Glaser
Jennifer Hunking
Ryan Hunt
James F. Hutchinson
David Hytowitz 
Rod Jones
Rudy Lachenmeier
Luis Martinez
Peter J Mozena
Christopher Piekarski
Gary Rankin
Daniel Schanz
Leroy J. Tornquist
Keri Trask Lazarus
Robert Winkler

Arthur Cummins, Jr. 
Gordon Dick
Katherine H. Denning
Peter J. Mozena
​Leroy J. Tornquist
Michelle Vlach-Ing
Ryan Johnson

Peter Chamberlain​
Kevin Crawford
Carl Crowell
Arthur Cummins, Jr.
Robert Custis
Phillip Gilbert
Erica Glaser
Ryan Hunt
David Hytowitz
Rudy Lachenmeier
Peter J. Mozena
Daniel Schanz
Leroy J. Tornquist
Keri Trask Lazarus​
Michele Vlach-Ing
Trent Whitford

 FAQs

  • ​​Arbitrators are attorneys or retired judges.  See here about requirements.
  • Arbitrators are neutral and impartial.
  • Arbitrators may not give legal advice or counsel.
  • Arbitrators cannot communicate with any party without all parties being present/copied.

  • ​You must contact the arbitrator and pay the fee listed in your notice.
    • If you cannot afford the fee you can apply for a waiver or deferral at 100 High St NE, Salem, Oregon 97301​​ in the accounting office.  Forms can be found her​e​.
  • The arbitrator will contact you with a hearing date.

  • At least 14 days before the hearing each party must:
    • Submit a list of all exhibits.
    • Make exhibits available to the other party.
    • Submit a list of witness (with contact information).
    • Submit copies of any court or other documents you believe are important for the case.​

​Within 28 days of the hearing the arbitrator will provide a copy of the decision (arbitration award).  If attorney fees can be claimed, they will establish rules on what and how to submit that information.  After any attorney costs are decided, the arbitrator will file the award with the court.


  • ​Appeals must be filed within 20 days of being sent to the court.
  • Forms are avaialble at 100 High St. NE, Salem, Oregon 97301 in the accounting office.  Forms can also be found here (in the arbitation section)​.  A filing fee of is required and an additional trial fee may also be charged.  For a current Oregon Circuit Court fee schedule​ click here​​. 
  • If an appeal is filed, the case is transferred to a judge to hold a trial.