What is Mediation?
Mediation is a method of alternative dispute resolution. It is a voluntary process and will only take place if both parties agree. It is an extremely effective way of choosing to resolve disputes without the need to go to court and incur the enormous expense entailed, and risking the uncertain outcome. Mediation involves an independent third party – a trained mediator – who helps both sides come to an acceptable agreement.
Mediations are completely confidential and the information discussed within them cannot be used in Court or in any other legal action issued at a later date.
Mediation is a flexible process that can be used to settle disputes in a whole range of situations such as:
- Divorce settlements
- Consumer disputes
- Workplace disputes
- Contract disputes
- Family disputes
- Neighbourhood disputes
The role of the mediator is to help parties reach a solution to their problem and to arrive at an outcome that both parties can live with and accept. Mediators are neutral and do not make judgement on the issues or give advice. They simply open up effective communication and understanding between the parties so that they can reflect on why the dispute has happened and how it can be resolved. The focus of a mediation meeting is to reach a common sense settlement agreeable to both parties. There are no “winners” or “losers”
If parties are unable to reach agreement, they can still go to court. Details about what went on at the mediation however will not be disclosed or used at a court hearing.
Both parties share the cost of mediation, which will depend on the value and complexity of the claim.
What are the benefits?
Mediation can be quicker, less stressful and cheaper than going to court. The uncertain outcome of a court case is also avoided. Once a settlement has been reached a mediation agreement can be drawn up, and the parties tend to keep to the mediation agreement because they have prepared the terms themselves.
Clients often leave a mediation with a much clearer understanding of the issues that led to the dispute and often report closure of the emotions they have experienced. Most people are relieved not to go to court.
Mediation at LCC
If you feel that mediation could help you, please contact Joanna Coker who is an Accredited Mediator on email@example.com or contact Kathy the Practice Manger on 01462 674671 option 2 or firstname.lastname@example.org