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  • Writer's pictureEd Johnson

Unlikely numbers and a tragedy of a missed opportunity in mediation

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.

Update on the car parts manufacturers attempts to restructure in bankruptcy.

Garrett Motion Inc’s lawyers have told the bankruptcy court that thus far negotiations with funders have been unsuccessful but there is an opportunity for mediation which may assist them with reaching a conclusion.

As I discussed in my last blog whilst negotiation happens in mediation, mediation is not negotiation.

I do love that courts in America sound like they came from Dante, the 9th Circuit court has this week ordered the parties in a claim arising out of the treatment of migrants in two centres to attend mediation.

The other party U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is accused of mistreatment of the immigrants during their time in two Californian centres.

Accepting the practical impact of any order the court said "Because the detention facility conditions challenged in this case have changed while these appeals have been pending, any ruling we enter concerning the conditions that existed in April and June 2020 will provide limited guidance to the parties,"

Restraining and injunction orders have already been made and the ICE’s objections were dismissed by the court who said "Contrary to the government's argument, district courts have authority to enter injunctive relief to remedy unconstitutional conditions of confinement, including overcrowding that poses health dangers, under certain circumstances"

130 migrants have already been released on bail and ICE has been ordered to provide evidence of what efforts are being made to test, identify and isolate anyone in their centres with Covid.

Senior immigrant justice attorney Bree Bernwanger who represents the migrants as part of the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights said "ICE took the position that even if the conditions in a facility violate people in custody's constitutional rights — in civil custody — that a court cannot order people released from civil custody to remedy that constitutional violation. That is an extreme position, and the Ninth Circuit rightly rejected it…The fact that hundreds of people have been released from civil immigration custody to their homes, to their families where they're living safely in our communities without incident just goes to show how inhumane and unnecessary detention was in the first place,"

Both parties stated a willingness to attend mediation to try and resolve the remaining issues.

I absolutely believe everything that China says. 5.2 million disputes were settled using its online mediation platform last year, with a success rate (presumably settlement rate) of 65%.

Now far be it rom me to suggest that seems an unlikely high figure as we know how busy we mediators in England have been this last year but really 5.2 million disputes? Going further the article says that in three years 13.6 million cases have been to mediation and the impact is a drop of 5% of cases going through the court system. If that’s even half accurate it has to be more evidence of mediation working to reduce the backlogs in courts (and if it is right then well done).

From China to India where a campaign is underway to promote mediation organised by the Cooperative School of Law, Thodupuzha with the support of MG varsity and Kerala State Mediation and Conciliation Centre of the high court

The Settle 2021campaign gets launched next Friday by K T Jaleel, the country’s higher education minister. The campaign aims to promote the use of mediation and to acknowledge the fact it has become the preeminent form of dispute resolution during the pandemic as the solutions offered are flexible and look to create a lasting satisfactory result for all involved the win-win scenario being the opposite to the Kobayashi Maru.

We reported last blog on the desperate attempts to get mediation and settlement achieved in the case of Joan Lucey retired nurse whose smear tests were incorrectly dealt with leading to her developing cancer.

Cantillon Solicitors, who represented Joan said they had been pushing for mediation for months, their senior partner, Ernest Cantillon said

“Is that the proper way to treat someone?...The HSE is publicly saying ‘We recognise these women have been wronged and their cases should be settled’, but that’s not what they are doing in private, that’s not what they are doing in this case – they were dragging it out.

“Joan had the stated aim of wanting to hold the HSE accountable. She could have been anonymised but chose to go public in the hope of giving comfort and support to others thinking of holding the HSE to account.

“It is so sad for her and her family that she has failed at the last hurdle to get that done.”

The HSE expressed their wish to continue the mediation and said it “offers sincere condolences to the family of the late Joan Lucey”

Whilst mediation is quick sadly it wasn’t quick enough for Joan to see the benefits, my thoughts go to Joan’s friends and family who will no doubt continue to pursue the case in her name.

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 the tunnel and see the light. 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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Tired of litigation? Try cheap mediation

With the continued backlog of cases mediation is now more than ever the best choice to find a resolution for your dispute.  Get your dispute resolved now so you can really concentrate on what’s import


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