In the majority of cases, the best way to resolve disputes is through face-to-face discussion. If this has not been possible, until recently the only alternative was to go to court. Over the past fifteen years or so mediation has provided a welcome alternative to litigation.
In mediation a trained neutral mediator will actively help the parties attempt to reach a settlement. The mediator has no power to impose a settlement and so the resolution of the dispute will be one that the parties will have agreed to. Mediation is also completely confidential.
Between 75-80% of mediations of civil and commercial disputes reach resolution and it has proven to be significantly cheaper than going to court. It is a swift and economical process which not only takes account of legal arguments but also of commercial needs.
Most mediations involve a meeting between the parties, which is chaired by the mediator. Before the meeting the mediator will have asked all parties to provide material to allow the mediator to understand the fundamentals of the dispute.