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Crypto-Currency Mediation

I was watching TV the other evening when an article began “unless you’ve been living under a rock the last five years you will have heard about crypto-currencies”, my wife turned to me with a look of bafflement on her face and said “What?”. Apparently she’s been living under a rock.

I think the BBC overestimates the general public’s current interest in crypto-currencies, I only If you don’t know about them as I am both a geek and had a case involving a client trying to pay by Bit-coin (no we don’t accept payment in anything other than bank backed currencies).

However crypto-currencies are a real trading product with a value placed on them, because those who have them give them value, whether you consider them and their related “currency mining” operations the equivalent to a ponzi scheme or a future proof investment they are here for now and are therefore subject to dispute like any other currency and consequentially are likely to need the assistance of mediators.

The Australian “crypto-advisory”, DigitalX, has received a request for mediation in a $1.83 million which relates to a deal for an initial offer of crypto-currency (an ICO) which went terribly wrong.

DigitalX (formerly Digital CC) denies any wrongdoing and released a statement which came shortly before a 12% drop in share prices “the Company intends to vigorously defend this matter and protect the reputation of the Company…we believe [the claims] have no basis.”

There’s an interesting article this week recording how Sir Michael Latham’s review of the UK building Industry’s contractual practices has led to a steady change in the industry and the adoption of mediation as a main stream solution.

His aim was “helping clients to obtain the high-quality projects to which they aspire. That requires better performance, but with fairness to all involved. Above all, it needs teamwork. Management jargon calls that ‘seeking win-win solutions’. ”

It’s part of the mediator’s role to explain how a win-win (though not in such coarse terms) can be achieved.

Latham identified (as all mediators have since that time) that the industry, and indeed most civil litigation needs a quicker, cheaper resolution than through the courts. Twenty years ago I was on a case in what was then the construction court in Manchester, both sides spent hundreds of thousands in front of the court getting to a position which looking back a good mediator would have come up with, and one party would not have lost a fifth of the properties they were developing to pay their legal fees.

I’m particularly fond of the statistics in this article “Generally accepted statistics indicate that about 80% of disputes that go to mediation are settled either on the day or shortly afterwards.” That’s one heck of a success rate. So when you are looking for a civil lawyer for a contractual dispute, or a way for your business to achieve a resolution by alternative dispute methods why wouldn’t you instead turn to a mediator and when you do give Northwest Mediation a call.

And if it’s employment issues you have then you can use mediation as well. Over in Fiji the ministry of employment has been training twenty-one of its staff in mediation techniques with a view to resolving issues in a more timely manner.

Salaseini Daunabuna permanent secretary for the Ministry of Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations announced the scheme at the Singapore mediation centre in Suva, held in the local Holiday Inn (by way of side note I often use Holiday Inns for mediation as there’s generally one close to the clients, they are private and comfortable, ideal surroundings for a civil or family mediation).

Daunabuna confirmed all workers could take up free mediation services for any of their grievances.

Trainer and mediator George Lim confirmed that “Each of [the staff members] will have to do a mock mediation for one hour. They will be video-taped and the tapes will be sent back to Singapore for assessing so it will be a very transparent process”. That’s a little shorter than the forty plus hours of training everyone at Northwest Mediation had to undergo along with the many hours in practice but it’s at least a start.

Down in New Zealand it’s the employment rights and contracts of midwives which is heading to mediation.

From 22 November onwards the midwives are threatening daily two hour strikes (presumably not in the middle of established labour) over the terms of their contracts with the District Health Boards (DHB).

The midwives’ union MERAS has already turned down a 9% pay rise, the same deal offered to NZNO.

Jim Green of the DHB the said “The offer they’ve turned down is 9% over the next 18 months plus two pay step increases and a lump sum payment...That’s a very good offer and the same as other midwives employed by DHBs.”

He added that he expects mediation to help them resolve the issues and prevent the strike action. “We respect the important role of Midwives while also recognising that an excellent offer has already been made. We are keen to talk further with the union.” says Mr Green

In another employment matter this time in a case against the Mount Kenya Diocese Anglican church mediation is to be used to resolve issues which originally arose when three priests were suspended from office for homosexual acts.

On one side is Bishop Joseph Kagunda (who has narrowly avoided jail for breaching previous court orders) on the other Archdeacon John Gachau, and reverends James Maigua and Paul Warui.

The parties have been given a list of mediators to choose from under the alternative dispute resolution pilot project launched by Chief Justice David Maraga which gives any party the arbitrary period of 66 days to find a resolution.

The project started in 2016 and since then disputes involving over 3 billion Somali Shillings (£4 million) have been concluded.

ADR is enshrined in law as a legal alternative to court proceedings under the country’s constitution Article 159(2)(c). “Alternative forms of dispute resolution including reconciliation, mediation, arbitration and traditional dispute resolution mechanisms shall be promoted”, would that the courts in England and Wales would be so pro-active in encouraging mediation.

Whether you need a mediator to help out with the council’s plans in Cheshire, a commercial mediator in London, an employment mediator in Manchester, a dispute resolution for your family in Liverpool, a neighborhood mediation in the northwest, then our mediators at Northwest Mediation can help.

Mediation is cheaper, quicker and less stressful than running any case to court, it can help with any dispute whether it's an employment issue or the sale at an under value of a property, a fight with a neighbour, family issues, commercial disputes or inheritance arguments contact Northwest Mediation on 07931318347 or via email at

neighbour mediation; commercial dispute resolution; commercial dispute; corporate dispute; commercial mediator; family mediation; inheritance mediation; property mediator;

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