What is it? Mediation involves the parties in a dispute meeting with a neutral third party (the mediator) to attempt to come to a resolution themselves.
Role of Mediator The mediator is trained to help facilitate communication between the parties and to guide the parties to their own settlement. All discussions in mediation are on a without prejudice basis and are confidential so what is discussed can’t be used in further court proceedings. The parties work through their matter through discussion, negotiation, compromise and “out of the box” thinking. The end result is a non-binding agreement that both parties have input in. The agreement is then confirmed in court, by arbitration award or by formal agreement with independent legal advice.
Types of Mediation We specialize in the following areas of mediation:
Corporate and Commercial Mediation
Real Estate Mediation
Advantages of Mediation The advantages of Mediation are as follows:
The parties have full control over the procedure and the final decision. They are not relying on a third party to make a decision for them.
The cost can be significantly less than traditional litigation.
The relationship between the parties may be able to be better preserved. Business associates can remain associates. Parents can continue to co-parent with each other.
Many resolutions in mediation cannot come from a traditional litigation in the courts. The parties are encouraged to think outside the traditional resolutions and traditional processes. The parties also have their specific circumstances
All discussions are confidential and without prejudice and therefore the parties can discuss the issues and concerns without fear that the discussion will be used against them in a further proceeding.
If you think you would be interested in mediation, discuss it with your legal counsel or Contact Us.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (CLICK FOR ANSWER)
Where do we attend mediation?
Most of our mediations will be held in one of our boardrooms in our offices. Sometimes you or your lawyers would prefer to have it at another location, if all parties agree.
What does mediation cost?
Fees are dependent on the experience of the mediator. The total cost will depend on the length and complexity of the matter. The parties can agree to split the costs of the mediator. Contact us to discuss the fees of our mediators.
How do I pick a mediator?
Feel free to contact us to discuss your options with respect to your mediator. We have junior mediators and senior mediators available. The right mediator depends on many factors including: the subject matter, expertise level, specialized training, personality, and the level of difficulty with respect to your specific matter.
When you say confidential and without prejudice what does that mean?
Confidential means that anything that is said in a mediation cannot be said outside of a mediation. Without prejudice means that anything that is proposed, said or offered in a mediation cannot be used in any court proceeding. If an agreement is reached in mediation, it is non-binding and cannot be used in court proceedings until it is transposed in a Consent Order or in an Agreement with Independent Legal Advice.
What do I need to bring to mediation?
Bring any documents, correspondence or anything else that may help with the resolution of the issue. In family law that would involve bringing all the disclosure materials (please find a list here). In a contract dispute, that would involve bringing the contract and any further information that you are relying on. Feel free to bring any expert reports, such as financial reports or planning advice, child expert information and reports, surveys or building inspections or anything else that you may think is relevant.
Do I need to provide the information to the mediator ahead of time?
That is something to ask the assistant of the mediator who will be working with you. Some mediators like to have the information ahead of time, some prefer that you bring it with you to the first meeting. Some mediators would prefer that if they are to review any materials beforehand it is with the agreement of both parties. The most important thing is to have it organized and ready-to-go whether you are providing it to the mediator ahead of time, or relying on it at the mediation.
Should I do mediation?
Mediation is for you if you want to try to come to a mutual agreement with another person and avoid the emotional and financial cost of going to court. In mediation, the parties make the agreement, not the mediator.
Can mediation work if we fight about everything or have a high conflict file?
Yes. As long as both parties are willing to come to mediation and attempt to discuss the issues with each other, assisted by a neutral third party. Sometimes mediation can occur even without all parties in the same room. Some of our mediators have also taken courses in high conflict resolution and will be able to work with you to attempt to get a resolution. Talk to us today if you have any concerns about the mediation process and whether your matter is appropriate.
Will the mediator make a final decision at the end?
It depends. It is not required for your lawyer to attend mediation. Some people feel more secure to have their lawyer attend. Be prepared that if you bring your lawyer, the other party will probably also want to include their lawyer. If you want your lawyer to attend mediation with you, please advise us so that we can make the necessary arrangement and work with your lawyer’s schedules.
How can I best prepare for our first mediation?
Think about the issues in your matter. What’s your worst case scenario? What’s your best case scenario? Also compile all documents you may think would be relevant and helpful during the mediation.