History of Mediation

History of Dispute Resolution Centers in Tarrant County, Texas

The Texas Civil Practices & Remedies Code 154.052 allows Counties to establish “…an alternative dispute resolution system for the peaceable and expeditious resolution of citizen disputes.”  In order to establish and maintain such programs, the act authorizes each county’s commissioners court to tax an additional cost, not to exceed fifteen dollars, on the filing fee in certain civil cases. In Tarrant County, the full fifteen dollars is collected by the Commissioners Court and funds dispute resolution basic operations.

In 1983, Tarrant County entered into a contract with Dispute Resolution Services of Tarrant County, Inc., a non-profit organization, to provide dispute resolution services. That contract was renewed annually until 2020 when Tarrant County decided to administer the program directly from the Tarrant County Administrator's Office.

The Tarrant County Dispute Resolution Program (DRP) began on January 4, 2021. Generally, the legislators contemplated that these dispute resolution centers would primarily serve court cases being referred from the Civil District Courts, Family District Courts, County Courts at Law, Probate Courts, and Justice of the Peace Courts. DRP is set up to do just that with their volunteer mediators who have expertise in guiding parties to agreements and thereby avoiding the emotional and financial toll of litigation.

DRP does not stop with court cases.  Mediation and other dispute resolution processes can assist us in resolving disputes in our communities and with our neighbors, strengthen relationships and improve performance in our schools, decrease juvenile crime and recidivism, and provide safe ways to create positive communication and joint solutions when there is conflict.  

This page was last modified on January 12, 2023


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100 E. Weatherford, Fort Worth, Texas 76196