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  • Writer's pictureEd Johnson

Benefits of mediation - some theory

With the continued backlog of cases mediation is even more so now than ever the best choice to find a resolution for your dispute. Get your dispute resolved now while you can’t go anywhere you can really concentrate on what’s important and what deserves your time and energy.

Northwest Mediation continues to use Zoom, Skype and FaceTime as well as the phone and emails to resolve disputes should we add we also do live in person mediation too! So please do not feel that you cannot contact us if you would like to mediate but wish to do so remotely.

I’m back on teaching (sort of) this week I have been asked into a locally based national solicitors’ practice to talk about inheritance mediation. I say asked I offered they accepted!

So I’ve been looking round for stories and articles discussing the benefits of mediation.

So let’s start with the Business Daily’s piece on cost saving which quotes a survey of Fortune 500 companies who between 2012 and 2013 spent over $210 billion on litigation, granted $1.8 billion of that was one case (Apple v Samsung).

Judgments which are by their nature public can have an impact on businesses in addition to the actual pay-outs, Pennzoil lost £1.8 million in value in seven days following a negative judgment.

With the confidentiality that applies to mediation such an impact could have been avoided (as could the hours wasted in court or waiting for the court to list the case as your local mediator will always fit in round your schedule wherever possible- at Northwest Mediation I work evenings and weekends for clients as it makes far more sense to them and me than applying “normal” working hours).

Time, money, publicity, stress all saved by coming to mediation early.

Next up a bit of spot the difference – this time mediation and conciliation, it’s fair to say the differences are rather more slender than say litigation and mediation or even arbitration and mediation.

Within mediation there is often an element of conciliation albeit the main thrust is not necessarily to reconcile the parties there is often the need for part of their relationship (whether familial or business) which needs to be reconciled or accepted by both sides so they can move on. I’m not sure I’m on all fours with the writer of this article but it never hurts to consider terms we use in mediation and whether we are meaning conciliation or actually just learning to accept differences in (for instance) parenting styles.

And finally this week mediation rules in the making. The fact that I noticed this article because it has the name of a rather nice drink in the title is perhaps more telling on me!

Mediation is ongoing to structure how and when disaster insurance pays out. There have been endless problems following natural disasters (and more direct man made problems) for claimants involving everything from floods to tornadoes and particularly the 2020 and 2021 hurricanes.

Senator Kirk Talbot is sponsoring the senate bill aimed at making insurers keep claimants in the loop at least every 6 months (a requirement often made the other way by insurers).

The issue for some of the committee is that due to the way loss adjusters are appointed the claim effectively restarts every time a new LA comes along. This is never helpful in a claim and so Kirk is pushing for the report to be made to the claimants as soon as the third LA is appointed irrespective of their progress.

The process should result in information flowing more easily to the claimant so they can identify what’s at issue and what evidence is needed.

Senator Jeremy Stine wants mediation for the hurricane claims to be set up by law as well and sets out some guidelines for the mediation practices that might be used in these instances. There will be a right to request mediation, currently tabled for claims under $50,000 but being debated to raise to $350,000 which (having dealt with mediations at Northwest Mediation in excess of £500,000) I don’t think is unreasonable.

The three pillars of mediation remain it’s voluntary, it’s confidential, the mediator is independent, by using those pillars to support your work the parties keep control, save costs, save time and energy and reduce stress. Finally this one is mediation, mediator jointly appointed, areas of discussion agreed and intention to be bound by the outcome.

In person or via electronic media as we’ve said before choose to mediate early and resolve your issues effectively, timeously, and with less stress and costs than going to your solicitor so you can get out choose a different path, not quite the road less travelled but perhaps the path less adversarial. You have an interest in the outcome the sooner you get round the mediation table the quicker you can move forward and avoid the grilling a cross examination in court would put you through.

By having a deep and meaningful discussions with parties the mediator elicits what the true “red-lines” are and where there is the potential for compromise, it is with this structured period of reflection that the parties are then able to reach an accord.

The flexible nature of mediation and the possible outcomes make it an ideal way to resolve disputes in an ever-changing world and the open nature of discussions in mediation whilst remaining confidential allows all sides to engage fully in the process and understand the needs of all involved allowing parties to reach a conclusion which both sides can live with and move on.

There are so many situations which could have been resolved by early intervention of mediation it continues to surprise me the lengths the public will go to avoid referral.

Whether you need a mediator to help out with a construction matter in the Northwest, or council’s plans in Cheshire, a civil mediator in London, a commercial mediator in Manchester, a dispute resolution for your family in Liverpool, a neighbourhood mediation in Stockport, 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, civil mediation or inheritance, wills and probate arguments contact Northwest Mediation on 07931318347 or via email at

neighbour mediation; commercial dispute resolution; civil mediation; commercial dispute; corporate dispute; commercial mediator; family mediation; inheritance wills probate mediation; property mediator; civil mediator; civil litigation; fast track mediation; injury mediation

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