Mediation Center of Los Angeles, formerly Valley Bar Mediation Center

Building community through mediation training and services

Studio City, CA   |
GuideStar Charity Check

Mediation Center of Los Angeles, formerly Valley Bar Mediation Center

EIN: 46-3838917


To provide greater access to justice and reduce the burden on the courts by providing qualified lawyer mediators at substantially reduced cost to mediate and resolve disputes for all civil litigation matters filed in the County of Los Angeles Superior Court. MCLA has 2 contracts with the LA Superior Court to provide both in-person and online mediations. We connect litigants with low cost qualified mediators for the LA Superior Court Vendor Resource Program.

Ruling year info


Principal Officer

Myer Sankary

Main address

3940 Laurel Canyon Blvd, P.O. Box 433

Studio City, CA 91604 USA

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Subject area info

Dispute resolution

Population served info

Unemployed people

Self-employed people

Retired people

NTEE code info

Dispute Resolution/Mediation Services (I51)

IRS subsection

501(c)(3) Public Charity

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990-N.

Tax forms

Show Forms 990



Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

The Los Angeles Superior Court (LASC) announced in March 2023 that it requests proposals to expand need for (ADR) services such as mediation to reduce the substantial increase in the number of cases that are filed and must be resolved before trial. LASC stated there are between 3500 to 5000 unlimited civil cases each month filed in the LA County Sourt system. This includes personal injury, real estate, construction, contracts, employment, insurance with claims exceeding $75,000. The Mediation Center of Los Angeles (MCLA) is the only organization that offered to provide immediate service to reduce the number of cases pending in the LASC through prompt low cost and affordable mediations conducted by highly qualified mediators. MCLA provides referrals from parties to qualified mediators on our panel of 22 mediators. We might expect a 10 fold increase in number of cases referred to MCLA in the coming months.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Dispute Resolution Mediation Program

The Mediation Center of Los Angeles, MCLA, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, was awarded two separate 5 year contracts in 2018 by the Los Angeles Superior Court to do both in-person and online mediations with highly qualified lawyer-mediators at a substantially reduced fee or free for qualified clients. MCLA has a panel of 20 distinguished lawyer-mediators with more than 20 years of experience in a variety of legal areas. MCLA provides a vital community service by educating the public about using alternative methods for solving conflict either before litigation or after a lawsuit is filed. Settlement of civil litigation cases is essential to the successful operation of the judicial system. MCLA provides access to justice to those who cannot afford the high cost of litigation; our vital service reduces the burden on the court and taxpayers by removing cases from the costly judicial process. No other organization provides such valuable quality mediations at reduced fees.

Population(s) Served
Economically disadvantaged people
Self-employed people

Where we work

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

MCLA aims to reduce the burden on the court by settlling hundreds of lawsuits that are pending the LASC court system. MCLA also will substantially reduce the cost for mediations so that people without funds can afford to have their cases settled by competent mediators. We have in place a customized semi-automated case management system that has allowed us to administer the contract we received from the court in 2018 to provide online mediations. We will increase the number of mediators to meet the demand and build out our current case management system to accommodate hundreds of new cases so we will be better able to serve clients and the court. Under the new contract which we have been awarded, we will be receiving hundreds of cases a week. Cases will be directly referred from the Court to MCLA and to any mediator a litigant chooses. We are the only court sponsored referred organization

MCLA is expanding its mediator panel to meet the increased referral of cases from judges. All mediators will be carefully screened to make sure that they qualify to serve on this elite panel of experienced mediators, both lawyers and non-lawyers. We will also increase the capacity of our current case management system by increasing the automation using AI. This will permit us to refer substantial number of cases to our panel of mediators. MCLA is waiting for the court to release the exact terms of the new referral contract, so we are now developing a strategic plan for substantial expansion. We have prepared detailed financial projections and statement of work that we have submitted to the court and which must remain confidential until the court issues the final contract with all the terms and conditions. We have had numerous planning session to develop strategies that will meet the increase number of cases and remove hundreds of cases from the court's pending dockets.

When the number of cases increased under the 2018 Court contract called the Vendor Resource Progrram, MCLA invested in a sophisticated, customized and semi-automated system (using Zoho as the main platform) to allow a part time employee administer all of the incoming inquiries and referrals to qualified mediators. This program has been very successful in meeting the Court's requirements under the Vendor Resource contract which is now all conducted online using zoom as our online teleconference program which we first used in 2018 and since the pandemic, all mediations are conducted online - which is much more convenient, time and cost savings, and is very effective in getting settlements. AS stated, we now have 22 mediators on our panel and we expect to double that number as demand requires. We use volunteers and part time staff to keep the costs of operation very low - we have no rent, no overhead, only website maintanence, insurance, accounting and our case management system.


Mediation Center of Los Angeles, formerly Valley Bar Mediation Center
Fiscal year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

Revenue vs. expenses:  breakdown

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.

Financial data

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Mediation Center of Los Angeles, formerly Valley Bar Mediation Center

Revenue & expenses

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

Mediation Center of Los Angeles, formerly Valley Bar Mediation Center

Balance sheet

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

The balance sheet gives a snapshot of the financial health of an organization at a particular point in time. An organization's total assets should generally exceed its total liabilities, or it cannot survive long, but the types of assets and liabilities must also be considered. For instance, an organization's current assets (cash, receivables, securities, etc.) should be sufficient to cover its current liabilities (payables, deferred revenue, current year loan, and note payments). Otherwise, the organization may face solvency problems. On the other hand, an organization whose cash and equivalents greatly exceed its current liabilities might not be putting its money to best use.

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data


The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Letter of Determination is not available for this organization
Form 1023/1024 is not available for this organization

Principal Officer

Myer Sankary

Mediation Center of Los Angeles, formerly Valley Bar Mediation Center

Officers, directors, trustees, and key employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of officer and director compensation data for this organization

There are no highest paid employees recorded for this organization.

Mediation Center of Los Angeles, formerly Valley Bar Mediation Center

Board of directors
as of 09/04/2023
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board of directors data
Download the most recent year of board of directors data for this organization
Board chair

Myer Sankary

Mediation Center of Los Angeles

Term: 2013 - 2023

Adam Grant

Grant Herson, Lawyers

David Jones

Lewitt Hackman lawyers

Yi Sun Kim

Nolan & Heimann, lawyers

Milan Slama

Mediation services

Enrique Koenig

Koenig Family Foundation

Wendee Berman

retired volunteer staff

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? No
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? No
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 9/3/2023

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Syrian/Polish - Mideast and European
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity


Sexual orientation

No data


No data