A. LEGISLATION, TRENDS AND TENDENCIES A.1 Domestic Legislation On September 23, 2013, a mandatory mediation procedure was reintroduced in the Italian system by Decree n. 69 dated June 21, 2013 (known as “Decreto del fare”), which has amended the Legislative Decree n. 28 dated March 4, 2010 on civil and commercial mediation. Under the amended mediation procedure, the parties are compelled to carry out a mediation proceeding as a prerequisite for judicial action, whenever applicable, in relation to disputes concerning the following subject-matters: lease of going concern, compensation for damages deriving from medical liability and from libel, insurance, banking and financial contracts, lease contracts, rights in rem, gratuitous lease, condominium, division of assets, hereditary succession, and family agreements. The mediation proceeding must be performed, with the mandatory support of a lawyer, at official mediation bodies located in the venue of the judge competent for the judicial action. Judicial actions begun without the parties having previously tried to find an agreement by way of mediation must be stayed by the judge, upon a party's request, in order to allow the mediation to take place. Arbitration proceedings are not expressly mentioned by the law, but Italian courts’ current tendency is to deem arbitration proceedings to be equivalent to ordinary court cases (see below under B.1); therefore, it is not unlikely that future case law will deem the rules concerning mandatory mediation applicable also when the dispute is to be settled by arbitration.