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  • Writer's pictureEd Johnson

Mediation News

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 continues to use 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.

With New year not far away now it will soon be the time for reflecting and renewing (all our insurances renew in November as this is the month that Northwest Mediation was first set up back in a Mill in Bollington).

Over six years I have helped, now, countless numbers of people with their family disputes, commercial arguments and neighbour problems. In addition I’ve worked with airports, manufacturers and hobby groups to find ways forward for them. Add to that the number of inheritance mediaitons we’ve brought to successful conclusions and the impact of even just my one mediation practice is incredible over the span of six years.

We still get a success rate in excess of 95% during mediation and higher if we include those matters we know went on to settle just after. When I think of the number of legal cases that go all the way to court and how many do not result in helping both parties I remain surprised I did not start mediation training sooner.

With new year not far off if you have an issue you have been battling with give me a call to discuss your options, how I can help and maybe the new year will see an end to your long standing problem, solicitor or client, director or shareholder, person on the Clapham omnibus or the 142 give me a call.

Reflecting on the past and actions has also been the order of the day in St Louis.

Former police office Julia Crews is now able to move on thanks to mediation and restorative justice. You may recall Julia drew her firearm mistakenly intending to draw her tazer and shot Ashley Fountain Hall in the torso causing horrendous injuries leading to lifelong medical problems and PTSD.

Ashley pushed for restorative justice even when being awarded $2 million in compensation, partly in response to Julia’s immediate recognition of her error, her apology and resignation which evidenced her regret at the mistake.

Seema Gajwani deserves special recognition as mediator for her part in bringing the two together in face to face talks leading to the resolution.

Wesley Bell, St Louis County prosecutor said "This was a unique opportunity where the defendant immediately realized she had made a terrible mistake in shooting the victim, and both the defendant and victim reached places where they could see a resolution for this incident outside of the criminal justice process…In this instance, justice is served by Restorative Justice, and this doesn't happen without Ashley being 100% onboard."

Seema added "Too often, the criminal justice system gets in the way of resolution and healing, even though that is what these two women wanted and needed. Prosecuting Attorney Wesley Bell made it possible by offering Restorative Justice…Ashley and Julia have the biggest hearts of anyone I have ever met. It was an honour to be a part of that conversation."

In other criminal proceedings lawyers for rock star Brian Warner (Marilyn Manson) have suggested he will be seeking a global mediation with the women around the world who have accused him of sexual assault and rape.

The singer currently faces 4 issued claims and over a dozen other accusations relating to his behaviour, actor and ex-girlfriend of Brian, Esmé Bianco, alleges numerous instances of emotional, sexual, and psychological abuse as well as rape the latter accusation also being made by an unnamed claimant. Other claims brought by previous girlfriend Ashley Morgan Smithline and Brian’s former assistant Ashley Walters accuse him of similar conduct in their personal and professional relationships.

If global mediation is sought (and I’m not clear why the word global is entirely necessary) it can only be entered into if the parties are willing and will not feel coerced in any way which given the accusations may be difficult, though not impossible. If the term global is intended to mean this will draw a line under any other allegations this is a misunderstanding of the role of mediation, it is between the parties involved not some form of disclaimer for any other actions.

Disputes arising from the handling of sexual assault claims against former Blackhawks coach Brad Aldritch are also going to mediation. Allegations were made against Brad by two people and claims have been brought against the team for the manner in which those allegations were handled.

In one of the originating cases Brad pleaded guilty to a criminal sexual assault and received a sentence of 9 months with 5 years probation.

Lawyers for the two players said “We are working together to achieve a fair resolution of both cases outside of the litigation process…To that end, we have agreed to enter mediation with a mutually agreed-upon third-party mediator, commencing on December 15th, and will engage in good faith efforts to resolve these matters."

With all parties active involvement resolutions can be found, but they have to be willing to be open honest which is why mediaitons remain confidential so everyone can speak in a safe space and know they will be heard. Hopefully those involved will also reflect on their actions and the impact on those affected.

Back to reviews of work done by mediation I don’t mind linking to a non competing service Mediation Matters in New York who have now grown to 14 staff and continue to blossom under the guidance of Sarah Rudgers-Tysz who (like Northwest Mediation) deals with everything from landlord and tenant to matrimonial disputes.

Sarah describes the service as one of the best kept secrets, I hope she’s not we need to be loud, front and centre in pushing the mediation services available and helping people avoid court.

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.

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 Stockport, a neighbourhood mediation in Liverpool, 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

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