Mediation

What is mediation?

Mediation is a flexible and confidential process used to settle a dispute between two or more people, businesses or other organisations.

It involves appointing a mediator, who is an independent and impartial third person, to help the parties talk through the issues, negotiate, and come to a mutually agreeable solution.

You can mediate before taking legal action or while legal action is ongoing.

What kind of disputes are suitable for mediation?

Mediation can be used to resolve almost all types of civil dispute, including

  • professional negligence

  • breach of contract

  • wills and probate disputes

  • trust disputes

  • land or property disputes

  • and many more...

What are the benefits of mediation?

Mediation allows you stay in control. Unlike in court, where a judge makes the decisions, in mediation you are able to decide how you want to resolve the dispute and don’t have to accept an outcome you are not happy with.

Mediation is usually much quicker and much less expensive than going to court, so it can be a more efficient way of resolving disagreements that allows everyone to move on from the problem sooner.

Mediation provides a safe and supportive environment. The mediator will listen to all views, talking to you privately, and sometimes together with the other party, to help guide you through the process.

Mediation is confidential. Where disputes are resolved through the court, is potentially a very public process. However, when disputes are settled out of court through mediation, it is private between you and the other party.

Mediation can help preserve your relationships. Settling a dispute through an adversarial court battle can put added pressure on the relationship between both parties. However, mediation helps you focus on communicating effectively with each other to find solutions that work for all.

When is the best time to mediate? 

Mediation can take place at any time before your case reaches a hearing or trial at court, and the best time will often depend on your individual case.

In general, it is best to try mediation as soon as you can. This will help reduce the amount of time and money spent on the dispute and open a dialogue with the other party before they become too fixed in their position.

If you have already started a court claim and wish to mediate, the court can pause your case to enable you to do so. The judge will not be told what is discussed or offered at mediation.

Further information on mediation can be found at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/a-guide-to-civil-mediation#what-is-mediation