Mediation is a voluntary and confidential procedure for alternative dispute resolution. Within the process a third neutral person – mediator assists the disputing parties to reach a settlement.
Mediation is a method of dispute resolution which allows the disputing parties to make a decision on how to solve the problem themselves, to defend their interests and to preserve their relations. To achieve this parties receive expert assistance from a mediator who facilitates communication and supports the negotiations towards mutually acceptable agreement.
Mediation ensures confidentiality of all discussions and documents presented.
The procedure is fast and charges for it are much lower than the judicial ones.
Mediation is one of the most effective alternative means of dispute resolution that allows both parties to win and preserve relationship in mutual interest.
Mediation allows the parties to:
- Discuss controversial issues in a safe and sympathetic environment;
- Develop their own agreement that best fits the individual needs and interests;
- Protect their personal and business secrets;
- Save time and money;
- Reduce hostility and anxiety;
- Maintain and/or improve personal and commercial relations with the other party;
- Improve communication and techniques for solving problems in interpersonal and business communication.
In most cases mediation ends with an agreement:
- In over 80% of the cases mediated agreements are enforced on a voluntary basis, because parties have developed them themselves in a way in which they believe settlement corresponds to their interests and abilities to perform;
- Even if parties do not reach agreement, both parties:
- clarify the matter of the dispute;
- communicate much more easily;
- improve their relations;
- keep trade secrets;
- create preconditions for the resolution of the dispute in future.
Specific features that make the procedure unique and effective:
The main advantage of Mediation is that it enables parties to reach a settlement that best fits their needs and interests. Further mediation is:
- Voluntary procedure: mediation begins upon mutual agreement of the parties and continues until the parties reach settlement;
- Procedure controlled by the parties: parties control the dispute and the outcome, decide what the agreement between them will be taking into account their own interests;
- Fast procedure: most cases are resolved for a few hours. Other cases may take several days or weeks, depending on the complexity of the issues and the will of the parties;
- Economical procedure: mediation is less expensive compared to the judicial and arbitration proceedings;
- Confidential procedure: all circumstances, facts and documents as have come to the knowledge thereof in the course of the procedure are confidential. Confidentiality is guaranteed by the obligation of all parties to comply with this liability;
- Mediation procedure preserves and enhances the relationship between the parties: mediation helps the parties overcome the tension and continue their relationship based on common interests;
- Convenient procedure: mediation is conducted in an informal and nice surroundings and also at a time convenient to the parties.
- Winning procedure: in mediation, both sides win as they both reach mutually acceptable agreement which highly reflects their needs and interests;
- Mediation helps to achieve the desired business results: mediation helps the disputing parties to obtain a satisfactory implementation of uncompleted obligations, to accomplish the planned business activities on time, to complete the conclusion of frustrated deals, to avoid losses.
When is the mediation procedure suitable?
In most cases, disputes can be resolved successfully with mediation. To determine when it is better to use mediation to resolve any questionable daily situation the criteria listed below might be taken into account:
- When there is a problem in the communication with the other party – the party is insulted, aggressive, avoiding communication;
- When it is important for the parties to preserve their relations;
- When a quick resolution is needed;
- When conflict cannot be avoided, as the parties work or live together;
- When parties wish to avoid formalized, expensive and time consuming procedures.
- When parties wish to preserve confidentiality;
- When a gap in the law is present;
- When facts are not contested;
- When there are many issues to be resolved.
What kind of disputes can be resolved by mediation?
As a rule almost all civil and commercial disputes can be resolved through mediation. Mediation is particularly effective for the following types of disputes:
- Commercial disputes - on the occasion of conclusion or execution of commercial transactions or between partners;
- Contractual disputes - e.g. in contracts of sale, delivery, rent, loan, produce, different kinds of services;
- Real estate disputes – in cases of sale or shared ownership;
- Construction disputes - on the occasion of delay of performance or when contesting the quality of performance;
- Family disputes – for settlement of relations in connection with divorce or the continuation of the marriage, relationship between parents and children after divorce and property relations between spouses;
- Disputes between heirs;
- Labor disputes;
- Consumer disputes;
- Disputes concerning insurance compensations;
- Disputes related to injuries (delicts), when negotiating compensation for the victim;
- Intellectual property disputes.