Commercial Mediation FAQs
Here we look at the most frequently asked question but please connect with one of our mediators to learn more
When should you hire an expert Commercial and Civil mediator?
Business disputes are common, and they can be extremely devastating. To make sure everyone goes home happy in such disputes, you should hire a mediator. You should also consider hiring a mediator if you think you are about to get into a dispute. This is because disputes become easier when the basis becomes clear and is handled soon enough. In many cases, these disputes are not about the legal aspects, but one party may feel slighted. Broken communications and relationships can quickly be resolved by mediators.
Do you need to involve mediators in small disputes?
There are no small disputes in business. A case where a small amount is involved could easily cost you a lot of valuable time and lead to the damage of worthy relationships. So you should always hire a mediator for your business disputes, no matter how small they seem.
What separates a mediator from a regular intermediary?
A mediator undergoes professional training to help people come to an agreement. Even in cases where all the parties involved are deeply entrenched in their ideas, a mediator will be able to come up with a resolution that pleases everyone.
When should you involve a mediator?
Mediators should be involved at the earliest stages of the dispute, long before you need to hire lawyers. The goal of a mediator is to prevent a dispute from becoming a legal case, and as such, they ensure that lawyers will not get involved in the dispute.
We have already had help from our friend; what will a mediator do differently?
It is not advisable to involve a friend in a business dispute. In some cases, they will even do more damage than good. A mediator is trained to avoid bias and understand the basis of the problem. Friends may unintentionally worsen the problem by suggesting solutions that don’t benefit both parties equally.
Why should you go for a mediator instead of a litigator?
First, with litigation, you will not be part of the process and will not be in control of the outcome. The opposite is true for mediation. Also, the costs of legal processes are extremely high, usually about 80% more than the cost of mediators. In litigations, the lawyers will be the overall winners.
What is the difference between needs and rights?
It is important to know your rights, but in some cases, focusing on your rights can limit your scope and lengthen a simple dispute. A mediator will help both parties think from the perspective of needs rather than rights. This will not be the case in court as the judge will only consider the rights of each party.
What do you mean when you say, ‘mediation is without prejudice?’
This simply means that the information exposed by each party in the mediation cannot be used in a legal battle in the future. This allows all parties involved to speak freely as they try to resolve their disputes.
How effective is mediation? And what happens when it fails?
Mediation is highly effective. On average, 80 per cent of cases handled by professional mediators will end in a resolution. Many cases are resolved in weeks. In case the mediator fails to solve the dispute, you will have to go to court and follow the legal procedure.
Does everyone go home happy after a mediation?
Not necessarily. The goal of mediation is to find a resolution which both parties can live with. But you can say that everyone goes home happy since no one will need to spend more resources on the dispute.
Can you hire a mediator to prevent a dispute?
In case you are starting a project with a different company, you will find it necessary to hire a mediator. The mediator will act as a neutral chair and will help both parties communicate clearly and effectively. This will prevent the eruption of disputes. In case a problem arises, the mediator will be the first point of contact and will help you get through the matter quickly.
How can a commercial mediator help parties that are dissolving their partnership?
Dissolving a partnership can come with many challenges, but no one wants to spend a lot of time or money on it. A mediator can help you come to a fair resolution and communicate effectively.
What are the professional backgrounds of mediators?
Mediators don’t come from a single professional background. They could be lawyers, business people, surveyors, teachers, and many more.
What does the law say about mediation?
The law encourages people to try mediation before approaching the courts. In many cases, parties who refuse to try mediation end up getting fined by the courts.
What if one party is not interested in mediation?
In case one of the parties is not interested in the intervention, the mediator will try to use their communication skills to get them on board. If that fails, you will have to take the matter to court.
Who makes the last decision in mediation?
Mediation does not work like litigation. In mediation, the parties involved will actively decide what they are willing to give and what they are willing to give up. You have to reach an agreement for the matter to be closed. In a court of law, you will have to go with the decision of the judge.
Is there a standard for mediators?
Mediators are not required to be part of a group, but most of them join mediator groups. These groups adhere to the standards set by the European Code of Conduct for Mediators, and they ensure that all their members stick to the same standards.
Are mediators insured?
In case issues arise after the mediation, the mediator might be held responsible. This is why most mediators are insured.
Is the resolution legally binding?
At the end of the mediation process, the parties will draw up a contract with the resolution. The contract will have the six elements of a legally binding contract and as such, it can be enforced by the law. The mediator will help with the drafting of the contract, and they will ensure that it contains accurate records. They will also ensure that the parties involved sign the contract.
Can I leave the mediation table?
Yes, if you are not happy with the process, you can always opt out of it. You should note that the process is completely voluntary. But you are advised to inform the mediator that you are planning to leave and give them your reasons.
What happens in a mediation?
The process will start in the pre-mediation process, where the mediator will ask the parties to outline the dispute, along with any relevant documents. They will then set the rules for the mediation process. The next stage is the opening, where the parties ask each other questions in the presence of the mediator. After this, the mediation will proceed to the private stage. In this stage, the mediator will spend time with each party privately as they try to convince each one to agree to a fair resolution. But you should note that not all mediators follow this procedure in the exact format.
What about confidentiality?
Anything you tell the mediator cannot be revealed to the other party without your consent. Also, any information that is revealed in the joint meetings cannot be admissible in a court of law. But you should note that any illegal activity will have to be reported to the authorities.
Which supporting parties will I need?
You should not handle the mediation without supporting parties. These could be friends, advisors, or even professionals who are relevant to your field.
Why should I choose a mediator instead of a lawyer?
You will work with a lawyer if the case is taken to court. Lawyers will cost you a lot more money than mediators, and you will also have to factor in the court fees. Unlike mediators, lawyers will fight for one side and try to get them a favourable position. This can settle the matter, but it will not mend relationships between the parties.
What is mediation?
Mediation is the process through which two parties come to an agreement with the help of a neutral third party. The mediator tries to get each party to compromise on some of their wants so that the matter can be resolved satisfactorily.
Is it possible to mediate disputes involving directors, shareholders, and partners?
Disputes arise in the boardroom frequently, and they can all be resolved before disasters happen. You just need to hire a mediator..