(a) A former judge qualified under this chapter who wishes to serve as a private judge must register with the Director of the Alabama Center for Alternative Dispute Resolution. The director shall verify that the former judge is qualified to serve as a private judge and shall compile and periodically update a list of registered private judges. The list of registered private judges shall be made available by the center to the public and to all actively serving judges in the state. The center may charge private judges an annual registration fee.
(b) If the parties to an action wish to have the action heard before a private judge, all parties shall submit to the circuit clerk of the court in which the action is pending a written petition for the appointment of a private judge and consent to appointment from the private judge selected as described in subdivision (1) of subsection (b) of Section 12-11A-2.
(c) The clerk shall forward the petition to the presiding judge of the circuit in which the proceedings are pending who shall verify that the former judge is registered under this section and shall enter an order granting the petition and appointing the private judge selected by the parties.
(d) The petition for an appointment of a private judge in a proceeding may be filed contemporaneously with the filing of the action or any time after the action has been filed, but before the beginning of a trial.