ACAN Resource Center

ACAN has a number of resources for use by judges, their clerks, neutrals, and attorneys.

In 2022, ACAN changed its name from what had been the "Academy of Court-Appointed Masters" because the term "master" both ill-served and ill-described this incredibly diverse profession. ACAN is also working to try to change the name used in rules. However, neutrals appointed in accordance with Rule 53 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and in many states are still referred to as "masters," and many of the resources in this field have also used this term.

  • The American Bar Association has adopted Guidelines on the Appointment and Use of Special Masters in Federal and State Civil Litigation and the ABA Judicial Division Lawyers Conference Special Masters Committee provides resources on making effective use of special masters. The Guidelines and resources are available online
  • JAMS - Using Masters and Referees
  • Legal Developments provides information about recent legal developments in the work of court-appointed neutrals.
  • Articles has public articles of interest to those who want to learn more about court-appointed neutrals.
  • Federal Rule 53 is the text of Rule 53 in the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. "Masters" are appointed under this rule. The rule underwent major changes in 2003 and the comments on the changes are of interest.
  • State Court Rules/Statutes provides information on the various rules for use of court-appointed neutrals in each state and the District of Columbia. States may use a different name than master for the function.
  • Model Appointment Orders provides model appointment orders. Rule 53 requires "masters" to be appointed by order and stipulates what the order must cover.