Mediation

ADR / Mediation

Increasingly the courts expect parties to try and settle disputes out of the courtroom using arbitration, adjudication, mediation or other forms of alternative dispute resolution.

Several members of chambers are accredited arbitrators, adjudicators and/or mediators and they also believe that it is often more appropriate to reach a solution by means of alternative dispute resolution. Not only may it be more speedy, informal and cost effective to avoid the courts but a resolution may be implemented which is not within the power of the Courts to impose. Just as importantly, avoiding the courts may assist the parties to see aspects of their position differently thus helping to maintain and resurrect commercial relationships.

Arbitration is probably the oldest form of alternative dispute resolution. Arbitration is the submission of a dispute to one or more impartial persons for a final and binding decision, known as an award. The award is made in writing; generally an award is final and binding on the parties to the dispute. Members of Chambers have considerable experience in advising parties before the commencement of arbitration and representing parties during the process.

Adjudication was introduced in 1998 as an alternative to court proceedings for many construction disputes. It offers a relatively informal and costs effective method of resolving disputes. The decision of the adjudicator is binding unless the same dispute is subsequently litigated or arbitrated. Decisions are quick; they are normally reached within 28 days of referral to the adjudicator. This quick process allows prompt resolutions to be obtained but also requires highly organised and skilful preparation as documents need to be produced, particularly by the Responding Party, at very short notice. Pallant Chambers has barristers who are not only accredited adjudicators themselves but who are also very experienced at giving expert advice and representation during the adjudication process.

Mediation is recognised as an important part of resolving disputes. Members of Pallant Chambers act as mediators and are also instructed on behalf of parties, advising and representing clients at mediations and preparing position statements and other documents beforehand. The key to mediation is that parties themselves ‘own’ the solution to their dispute, rather than the decision being imposed upon them by the Court. They themselves have sought to resolve it, with the assistance of a mediator, who is there to facilitate the process and agreement between the parties. A solution that flows from mediation is often far wider than a court could impose, and is designed to meet the individual needs of the particular participants.

Comments

  • “Parties were sensitively handled and firmly pressed but not browbeaten towards settlement. Consequently the mediation succeeded when it might well have failed at the hands of a less skilled mediator.”
  • “Thank you for recommending Bernard Weatherill as a mediator he did an excellent job.”
  • “Mr di Mambro’s encouragement to both parties and his optimism that the parties could themselves reach a suitable conclusion was evident not only throughout the mediation process but was in the forefront of the parties’ minds following the mediation.”
  • “He was scrupulously and demonstrably neutral.”
  • “He assisted in creating a momentum for settlement but never exerted obvious pressure on the parties.”
  • “Mr di Mambro was able to de-mystify the process for our client and let them see clearly the benefits of settling against having to go on with the litigation.”