Law Student National Representation in Mediation Competition

Competition Mission

The competition introduces law student participants to the challenges of representing clients in mediation.

The judging criteria reward those participants who use an effective combination of (i) advocacy and (ii) problem-solving. Advocacy in mediation means that lawyers should advocate for their client’s interests with the mediator.

Problem-solving in mediation means that the negotiating attorneys must learn about each other’s clients’ interests and BATNA (Best Alternative To A Negotiated Agreement), use objective standards, brainstorm options, and select and shape a solution that meets their interests.

Participants must balance their clients’ interests with the goal of achieving an effective settlement.

Competition Rules and Guidelines

.The Rules have been significantly revised for the 2020-2021 Online Competition.

Competition Scoring Criteria

Competition Judges are provided detailed scoring criteria to use when evaluating the teams’ performances.


The competition is open to all full-time and part-time law students enrolled in ABA approved (or Canadian LSAC-member) law schools during the semester the competition is held. Students enrolled in joint degree programs (JD/MA, JD/MBA, etc.) who have not graduated from law school and are enrolled in the joint program for the semester are eligible. LLM, MJ, or other non-JD students are eligible for the competition, provided their initial law degree graduation date was no longer than twelve months before the competition registration deadline.

All student competitors must be ABA Law Student Division Premium members for the 2020-21 bar year to be eligible to compete. Premium membership is $25. Join Now at

To be eligible to register teams in the competition, the law school must have hosted within the last five (5) years or have formally agreed with the ABA in writing to host within the next two (2) years.

To commit to hosting in the next two years, send a letter from a school administrator to the ABA staff at


Representation in Mediation Competition Registration is now open!

All Representation in Mediation Competition events for 2020-21 will be held remotely. Reserve your team’s spot today.

  1. Step 1: Complete the Online Registration Form
    On this form you will be able to indicate your school’s intent to participate this year and the number of teams you plan to register as well as the key contact(s) for your school.
  2. Step 2: Complete the Payment Process
    After you complete the registration form, ABA staff will send you instructions for submitting Payment.
  3. Step 3: Submit your regional preferences.
    Once the regional competition hosts are finalized, the ABA staff will send a regional preferences form to all registered teams. Pay close attention to the exact dates for each regional; the exact days and dates vary by regional. Most regionals will be scheduled between February 25th and March 8th.

2020-2021 Competition Timeline

December 14, 2020        
Preliminary registration deadline

January 18, 2021
Final registration deadline

January 18, 2021 
Competitors’ Names & ABA  Membership ID Numbers Due (instructions forthcoming)

National Finals
April 9-10, 2021

Volunteer for the 2020-2021 Representation in Mediation Competition

There will be multiple opportunities for lawyers and mediators to volunteer at regional competitions that will be held virtually at eight different law schools across the country between February 20th to March 7th. The National Finals will take place on April 9-10. View the various volunteer opportunities.

Registration Form