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  • Ed Johnson

Truth in mediation

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.

“Be sure your sins will find you out” the biblical quote my reverend mother used to say to my brother and I when we tried and failed to get away with anything, it takes much longer in politics but as I write this maybe someone’s chickens are finally coming home to roost, to mix the metaphor.



Truth is an odd fellow in mediation, as people often talk about speaking their truth, what they generally mean is their opinion and that it is immutable and immovable and they don’t want to listen to anything else (not an option if you’re going to engage). Likewise truth as a concept is not really what we work with in mediation, apart from the truth that not reaching agreement in mediation is probably going to be more costly and time consuming that agreement what actually happened in the past is not as important as a. how you deal with what happened and b. what you do going forward.


And speaking their truth in mediation this week we have the Oil Forms in Norway and their workers, one party’s truth is that wages can’t increase because of tight constraints on how increased income is spent another might be that when making staggering profits oil companies should probably have a little more care for their 7300 employees (frankly I’d be happy if they used the vast profits to reduce the cost of oil aren’t we in a crisis of their making?).


The number of businesses involved in these talks is quite staggering including Aker BP, Equinor, ConocoPhillips, Coor Service Management, ESS Support Services, KCA Deutag Drilling, Neptune Energy, OKEA, Repsol, Sodexo Remote Sites, TotalEnergies, Vaar Energi, Wintershall Dea and 4Service Offshore Hotels. The previous strike in 2020 devastated Norway’s oil and gas production so there is another truth here, talk reach agreement or further impact the current energy supply crisis.


Increased online mediation is another truth that has resulted from the pandemic but for 25 years Mediate.com has been doing work online, now their new platform has launched combining some elements of AI and case management.


I’m happy with case management systems for bigger businesses (I’m small enough that spreadsheets will do for now) I’m not a fan of computers working out what the problem or solution is (especially if what they are actually doing is working out the mid-range figure, that’s maths not mediation) but to each their own and people should have a range of methods available for sorting their disputes (as I say every week I work online and in person, I’ll work as an avatar if you really want or by phone and post though these are less efficient).


Colin Rule CEO of Mediate.com said “The public launch of ODR.com is a watershed event in the field of online dispute resolution…We have built this new system from the ground up to be the most flexible, configurable, and secure platform for resolving online problems the world has ever seen. I am confident that our new system will raise the bar for state of the art online.


There’s a link to the walkthrough of the system in the article should you feel the need.



And how often we hear “truth” in neighbour disputes? In this article it’s interesting to see how in the US local ordinance plays a part in determining noise levels, in the UK there are limits but you have to keep a diary and then hope the council will do something….or of course you could come to mediation.


Maybe your neighbour is playing loud music for their own nervous condition, maybe they don’t realise that it’s disturbing you, so let’s talk rather than digging in and preparing to fight. And of course this article talks about using mediation as well as local laws, though I do like the “letter and cake” example as well!


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 ed.johnson@northwestmediation.co.uk

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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