Disputes can cause individuals and small businesses direct financial loss, unbudgeted costs, wasted management time and often irreparable damage to relationships and reputations. It is, therefore, crucial to resolve disputes quickly and understand the range of options available to you.
When it comes to dispute resolution, we now have many choices. Understandably, disputants are often confused about which process to use. The choices include:
Here we will discuss meditation.
What is Mediation?
The goal of mediation is for a neutral third party to help disputants come to the agreement on their own. Rather than imposing a solution, a professional mediator works with the conflicting sides to discover the interests underlying their positions.
Mediation can be helpful at allowing parties to open their feelings and fully explore their grievances.
Working with parties together and sometimes separately, mediators try to help them hammer out a resolution that is sustainable, voluntary, and nonbinding.
There are 6 steps to a formal mediation;
- introductory remarks
- statement of the problem by the parties
- information gathering time
- identification of the problems
- bargaining and generating options
- reaching an agreement
Advantages of Mediation
The main advantages of attempting to reach the agreement by mediation are:
- You are directly involved in negotiating your own agreement.
- No settlement can be imposed upon you (as happens in litigation or arbitration).
- The proceedings are conducted in private, and you are in control of your own position.
- Because mediation can be used early in a dispute and agreement can be reached more quickly than may be the case when pursuing the problem through the courts.
- You have the services of an experienced person who can aid your negotiations, and assist in achieving a quick settlement.
- Generally, the cost is greatly reduced in comparison with pursuing the matter through the courts or arbitration.
- The Mediator may be able to explore alternative solutions that may not have been considered by the parties or are not possible or available through the courts.
- It is possible to re-establish a positive relationship between the parties once the dispute is resolved.
- If the Mediation is unsuccessful you have neither prejudiced or sacrificed any legal rights nor delayed significantly any ultimate settlement by the legal process.
Contact us for dispute resolution and mediation
We can advise you on the best strategy for achieving your objectives within your budget and preferred timescale. We focus on identifying the issues early and using the most appropriate method of dispute resolution. These range from negotiating on your behalf to appointing an independent third party or an expert to come to a solution. Contact our litigation department to discuss which method suits you best.