Mediation in facts

Mediation is one of the most popular means of ADR. As most of the various alternatives to trial, it was conceived and developed between the 30s and 80s of the last century. Its advantages over the formal, expensive and slow litigation, and also over the existing risk of inappropriate judicial procedures for certain types of disputes required fast adoption and  wide application of the ADR methods in almost all countries in Europe and North America .


Mediation is regulated first through Recommendations of the Council of Europe: Recommendation № R (98) 1 on Family Mediation was adopted in 1998; Recommendation № (99) 19 concerning Mediation in Penal Matters and Recommendation (2001) 9 on Mediation between Administrative Authorities and Individuals were adopted respectively in 1999 and 2001. In September 2002, considering the first positive results from the recommendations mentioned  the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe adopted also Recommendation R (2002) 10 on Mediation in Civil Matters. These were the first pan-European regulations governing the institute of Mediation and they became the basis of its legal settlement in the European Union. They were also the basis for the development of the Green Paper and for the opening of discussion among all interested in the field of ADR in civil and commercial matters.

Regulations from this period highlight the growing interest in the field of Mediation in three directions:
- as a means of improving access to justice;
- as a response to the Member States' legislation for ADR promotion;
- as a political priority based on debates in the field of information technology and international Internet disputes.
The discussions were followed by a legislative initiative for regulation of the institute on European Union level - Directive 2008/52/EC was adopted and it elaborates the recommendations of the European Council.

Facts about different types of Mediation

Mediation has a long tradition as a means of out-of-court settlement of commercial disputes. Its effectiveness is proved by the fact that in many U.S. states parties cannot refer to court certain categories of commercial disputes if they have not previously tried to resolve the conflict through a professional intermediary. In England around 21% and in China about 25% of the commercial disputes are settled out of court through mediation.

Mediation has also a long history in labor disputes. It developed in the U.S. in the 60s of the last century and quickly gained popularity among employers. Many companies proceeded to mediation for settlement of hidden and overt conflicts, thus cutting the expenses for court proceedings, reducing significantly the number of legal actions and as a result reporting high rates of out-of-court resolved labor disputes.

Since the early 90s of last century mediation in labor disputes develops in Europe even faster than before.