Early Neutral Evaluation (ENE) is when disputing parties submit their case to a neutral evaluator through a confidential "evaluation session." The neutral evaluator considers each side's position and renders an evaluation of the case. Contracting parties can include an ENE clause in the contract, which represents their agreement to submit to ENE in good faith to resolve any contractual disputes.
ENE can also be used in federal and state government disputes. For example, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's website includes a list of government agencies that offer an ENE program.
California's State Bar Court, which hears cases involving attorney discipline, also offers an ENE program.