A private trial most closely resembles an actual court trial and procedurally they are almost identical. The main difference is that the parties have agreed to an individual, usually a retired judge, to sit as a "judge pro tempore" and render a decision. The trial is also held in private and may be confidential.
Neutrals selected as private judges are appointed by a stipulation that is signed by the parties and filed with the court. The court then endorses the stipulation and the dispute is held in abeyance by the court until a decision is reached. The verdict is then entered in the court as if the trial were conducted there. Consequently, verdicts in private trials are appealable under the same grounds as a public trial verdict. In California, this right is granted under Article VI, §21 of the California Constitution.
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