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The International Freezone Association operating as

The Association of Professional Independent Scientologists

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The Association of Professional Independent Scientologists is a non-profit association
dedicated to the promotion and practice of the original philosophy of Lafayette Ron Hubbard.

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  • APIS Dispute Resolution Process

    Members may use this document as a template to establish binding dispute resolution Process with their clients. You must notify APIS of your intent to enter into the APIS binding dispute resolution with your clients, and have APIS approve of your contract before APIS can agree to it.

    This binding dispute resolution ("BDR") agreement is entered into by (Name of member) and (Name of client) to establish a procedure to resolve a dispute that has arisen during the performance of a contractual sale or service.

    Both parties, sharing a desire to avoid expensive, time-consuming litigation and to identify and mutually eliminate or resolve disputes hereby agree to submit to APIS binding dispute resolution process.

    1. Conflict of Interest:
    a. APIS representative(s) involved in the BDR must at all times remain unbiased relating to the parties or an issue in controversy. If the APIS director(s) find(s) that he/they cannot be unbiased, or that a conflict of interest might exist, he/they shall excuse him/her/themselves from participation in the specific issue creating the bias or conflict.

    2. Procedures:
    a. The parties agree to present their positions on their dispute(s) to the APIS Board of Directors who will appoint a Board of Investigation (B of I). The members making up the B of I must confirm to the following criteria:

    i) No more than 4 and no less than 2 members
    ii) At least one member must be Class IV
    iii) At least one member must be OT III
    iv) All board members must be of the same or higher case and training level of the disputing parties.

    b. Prior to the BDR proceeding, the parties will cooperate with each other in exchanging all documents that are relevant to the dispute and in permitting reasonable review of each other's files. At the request of APIS, each party will send copies of all documents that are relevant to the dispute to APIS. The parties will cooperate in selecting documents to avoid duplication between the submissions of each party. Duty of care in confidentiality must be taken with regard to PC folders and upper level materials

    . c. It is emphasized that the Board must maintain the highest level of confidentiality with regard to materials contained in PC folders and upper level materials.

    d. The parties will make every effort to submit a list of issues in the order that is most logical for presentation to APIS, including a listing of witnesses or other third parties that may have information directly impacting the BDR process.

    e. All participants will refrain from statements that are unduly argumentative or contentious, of a generalized nature rather than specific, or consist of rumours or third party statements.

    f. The proceedings will not be recorded and witnesses will not be sworn. However, all participants will be expected to be forthright in their statements and to be fully open and honest in their dealings with each other.

    g. The principals may conduct discussions with or without APIS. The principals may also request APIS to present its views on any issues or to propose resolution of one or more of the issues in dispute. Either principal may correspond privately and confidentially with APIS to discuss possible settlement positions, and APIS will not reveal any confidential information to the other party, unless authorized to do so.

    h. All parties will endeavor to keep the negotiations active until a binding resolution is reached by APIS. If settlement is not reached between the principals, the principals may continue negotiations for any period that is deemed to be mutually desirable.

    i. At any time before the final binding resolution, the principals may come to terms and agree to a mutual settlement. At that time, APIS must be immediately informed, and the BDR will be discontinued. The settlement entered between the principals will be deemed by APIS as the final binding resolution, as if it was handed down by APIS.

    j. If settlement is reached, either party may call for APIS to prepare a report documenting the settlement and stating its conclusions as to its merits. Any such report will be delivered to each party promptly after it is requested. This report may be used by either party to justify the settlement within its own organization.

    k. This entire process is a settlement negotiation and all offers, promises, conduct, or statements made in this BDR proceeding are confidential and shall be inadmissible in any subsequent litigation (including proceedings before a board of contract appeals) of the disputes covered by this agreement. All written materials created specifically for this proceeding are also confidential and inadmissible in subsequent litigation. However, if settlement is reached any such statements and written material may be used to justify and document the contract modification embodying the settlement.

    l. APIS will treat the subject matter of this proceeding as confidential and refrain from disclosing any of the information exchanged to third parties. APIS is disqualified as a witness, consultant, or expert for either party in any matter relating to the disputes covered by this agreement except by referencing Lafayette Ron Hubbard source materials where considered necessary at APIS discretion.

    m. Any APIS fees and actual costs, such as phone calls, postage, meetings, etc. of conducting the BDR proceeding will be paid jointly by the principals.

    3 Principles:
    a. The APIS representative will inform himself of the facts, issues, positions, interest, documents, and supporting arguments relating to a disputed matter. It is the purpose of the representative to foster the negotiations between the parties to a satisfactory but technically correct conclusion according to the original workable philosophy of Lafayette Ron Hubbard, not to become involved in the substantive issues. The representative may do this by:

    Facilitating communications between the parties.
    Using and pointing to Lafayette Ron Hubbard materials as references.
    Setting grounds for discussion (such as no interruptions or unsubstantiated allegations).
    Ensuring that emotions and misemotions are separated from the issues.
    Assist to clarify the parties' positions.
    Assist in separating fact from fiction.
    Separating legal issues from factual issues.
    Helping the parties narrow and define the issues.
    Locating where the parties agree and where they disagree.
    Assist in obtaining knowledge of the facts, from others if required.
    Assisting in settlement by finding areas of mutual interest.
    Identifying innovative solutions or recommended settlements.
    Seeking win-win strategies.
    Referring to original Lafayette Ron Hubbard materials as source for any clarification and settling of results. <

    b. The representative is not limited to the activities identified above, but is expected to act in accordance with those activities, as the representative deems necessary.

    c. The forum for the BDS may be either communication by e-mail, chat room conference, personal meeting or telephone conference at the discretion of the representative and the parties.

    4. Activities:
    a. The principals may conduct discussions with or without APIS. The principals may also request APIS to present its views on any issues or to propose resolution of one or more of the issues in dispute. Either principal may correspond privately and confidentially with APIS to discuss possible settlement positions, and APIS will not reveal any confidential information to the other party, unless authorized to do so.

    b. All parties will endeavor to keep the negotiations active until a binding resolution is reached by APIS. If settlement is not reached between the principals, the principals may continue negotiations for any period that is deemed to be mutually desirable.

    c. At any time before the final binding resolution, the principals may come to terms and agree to a mutual settlement. At that time, APIS must be immediately be informed, and the BDR will be discontinued. The settlement entered between the principals will be deemed by APIS as the final binding resolution, as if it was handed down by APIS.

    d. If settlement is reached, either party may call for APIS to prepare a report documenting the settlement and stating its conclusions as to its merits. Any such report will be delivered to each party promptly after it is requested. This report may be used by either party to justify the settlement within its own organization.

    e. This entire process is a settlement negotiation and all offers, promises, conduct, or statements made in this BDR proceeding are confidential and shall be inadmissible in any subsequent litigation (including proceedings before a board of contract appeals) of the disputes covered by this agreement. All written materials created specifically for this proceeding are also confidential and inadmissible in subsequent litigation. However, if settlement is reached any such statements and written material may be used to justify and document the contract modification embodying the settlement.

    f. APIS will treat the subject matter of this proceeding as confidential and refrain from disclosing any of the information exchanged to third parties. APIS is disqualified as a witness, consultant, or expert for either party in any matter relating to the disputes covered by this agreement except by referencing Ron Hubbard source materials where considered necessary APIS discretion.

    APIS fees and actual costs, such as phone calls, postage, meetings, etc. of conducting the BDR proceeding will be paid jointly by the principals.

    ~oo00oo~

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