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  • Writer's pictureEd Johnson

Mediation nam pecuniam

With the limited access to courts and lawyers 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 uses Zoom, Skype and FaceTime as well as the phone and emails to resolve disputes so please do not feel that you cannot contact us as there are limits on physical meetings.

Who pays the cost of mediation is one of the most common first questions I get asked when a client contacts Northwest Mediation or when I contact the other party.

It’s a perfectly sensible question to raise, there are some free services, for certain people legal aid is available as well but we charge for our work because we deliver a professional service to clients and (as well as paying all the overheads) think that the comparative price of sitting with any other professional (from plumber to lawyer) would be less than the amount per hour we charge, our standard fee of £400 for a half day is actually only £50 per party each per hour, last time we called the plumber out it was definitely more than that as an hourly rate.

Now in Canada the rise of third party funders takes away the risk from clients or the need to pay fees up front. This seems to me horribly familiar to the way in which third-party funding was used in personal injury litigation, the client is assured the third party will foot the bill if they lose but will take share in the winnings if they succeed.

The whole concept of a win vs losing is a little strange to the ears of a mediator as we strive to achieve a win-win or at least a neutral result everyone can live with. This article talks about the benefits of third party funding that the funded client will have had a buffer of a further expert looking at the case if they are going to fund it, I would caution that this was supposed to be the case in TPF PI claims but rarely was it the followed quite so clearly as the article suggests.

Equally for mediation to be it’s most effective participants should have risk, if you gamble with someone else’s money you have no interest in caution, legal aid clients are often accused of not caring because it isn’t their money at stake, much the same with no win no fee clients if they weren’t paying why would it matter to them if they rang every day?

Whilst there may be a place for third party funding I would be reluctant for it to be mainstream in mediation and will continue to ask both parties to pay equally wherever possible.

Meanwhile in state funded mediation the South Korean government has determined it will recommence mediation in the case of alleged sexual assault from 2017 by a South Korean diplomat previously stationed in New Zealand.

The process takes place under the New Zealand labour laws and is the second attempt at mediation for the victim.

South Korean’s own watchdog has already found that the internal investigations by the diplomatic service were lacking an recommended that compensation be paid to the victim, the diplomat has been moved and then returned to home soil as a result of the investigation. Pressure was increased in July when everyone’s favourite Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern raised the issue with President Moon Jae-in.

The Scotsman regularly has good articles on mediation John Sturrock in this one talks about his initial reluctance t consider mediation skills as something that could either be used online or taught online.

As ever theory is no replacement for experience and as most mediators have found over the lockdown months (I nearly said years) mediation can and does succeed even in the online world of Teams and Zoom.

John talks about redesigning the course to suit and as we go forward in the “new way” we are all finding new tricks and skills with different platforms, I still prefer zoom and consider it the most secure and security conscious of the platforms available, Teams (apart from the costs) is playing catch up and the new court system will try to emulate all that Zoom does, what better compliment that mimicry?

Mediators have always worked outside the box and pushed the envelope as we like to find practical results as well as discussing practical problems of any agreement reached so it isn’t too surprising that John is now a convert to online.

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. 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 Liverpool, a dispute resolution for your family in Manchester, 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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