Both parties have to agree to participate.
A mediator helps to prioritise and clarify issues and assist parties in the search for solutions. A mediator will guide parties through negotiations to avoid escalations of conflict and find a resolution. For all Construction Mediation in London Please contact us.
Mediation is voluntary and cannot take place unless both parties have agreed to participate. On some occasions, parties are advised to mediate by way of a judicial recommendation, with a risk of cost sanctions being imposed against the non-compliant party. A mediation process can only be successful with the participation of all parties and will cease if one party refuses to participate further. As it is a voluntary process a party is free to leave the process at any time.
Mediation is non-binding and entering a mediation process does not bind the parties to reach a settlement with each other. The mediator has no authority to make a binding determination unless the parties specifically agree that he or she should do so. So, if no settlement is reached the dispute will proceed to the next stage in the litigation process. However, if a settlement is agreed the details of the agreement will form part of an enforceable contract. If mediation does not end in a settlement, it can, and often does, act as a catalyst to settle. Most cases that do not settle on the day, settle soon after.
Mediation is private. Its confidential nature appeals to parties who wish to avoid courtroom scenarios, which are public and can cause potential embarrassment. The mediation process is ‘without prejudice’ and confidential to the extent permitted by law. This can assist parties reach a settlement as it means they are able to disclose information, express views, make suggestions and offer concessions safe in the knowledge it will not be held against them if the dispute was to proceed further to trial. A party is free to refuse other offers made during mediation and can choose to walk out without the risk of this being held against them if a court determines costs in the future. (If mediation breaks down, a party can formalise an offer made during mediation by way of a Part 36 offer which would carry the usual cost implications).
Another benefit of the private nature of mediation is that details of any settlement agreed upon are confidential. This can be an important part of dispute resolution as some parties wish to keep private the terms of a settlement from the public or other interested parties.
Firstly, both parties need to agree to mediation. Once that has been established, we ask both parties to sign a mediation agreement. A venue and date are agreed then the mediation itself takes place. Mediation can also be conducted online if both parties agree.
Prior to the actual mediation day itself, the mediator will contact each party separately to begin preparation work. This would involve a telephone conversation or online meeting and the reviewing of relevant documentation.
We endeavour to conduct proceedings with a view to helping the parties reach an agreement on the day of mediation. Whilst desirable, this is not always possible. We will carry out extra work to help reach a settlement.
Your mediator will be a RICS accredited mediator with the relevant training, expertise and experience of the construction industry to help both parties achieve a satisfactory outcome.