Portugal recognizes the importance of mediation, but mediation has not yet become mainstream within the legal sector. A public system of court-annexed mediation programs exists in family, labor, criminal law and civil areas, before Justice of Peace Courts.
In 2013, the Portuguese Mediation Law implemented the EU directive, regulating private commercial mediation. Requests for mediation constitute fewer than 2% of cases filed in the first instance courts, however, and have less than a 15% success rate. As a next step in the further development of mediation in Portugal, court-annexed pre-mediation or mandatory mediation should be considered for future legislative reform.