Working It Out Together.
Mediation is a form of Alternative Dispute Resolution in which a neutral trained third party (the Mediator), facilitate confidential discussions between disputing parties, who come together voluntarily in a relaxed but controlled environment, to discuss and resolve their differences.
It is non-adversarial and each party is heard and recognized as important to finding a solution and is treated equally and empowered to use their own ideas as a motivation to resolve the dispute.
Mediation saves time and money that may otherwise be spent sending correspondence back and forth and dealing with other court related backlogs, delays and adjournments. Litigation can be an expensive, long drawn out process and some cases takes years to get through the court system and in some cases, the costs spent on litigation can exceed the amount in dispute.
Mediation is significantly different to other forms of dispute resolution such as the Courts or Arbitration because the parties to a dispute resolve their issues themselves.
The courts are adversarial and therefore, the duty of an Attorney is to protect his client’s “position” to the best of his ability. After hearing arguments from different sides, the court forms its opinion and imposes its decision on the parties which inevitably creates a win or lose situation for either a claimant or defendant.
In Arbitration, a person with knowledge of the subject matter in dispute, hears both sides and then applies inter alia, his knowledge of the issue, his thoughts and his opinion to the existing facts and comes to his conclusion which is also imposed on the parties as a decision.
In many cases, persons will abide by arbitration or court imposed decisions, not because they agree or think they are absolutely right, but because of the possible sanctions of non-compliance.
In Mediation, the process is geared towards protecting the parties real “interests”” and not necessarily their “position”.
A mother and her 15 year old son were arguing over for the last orange left in the refrigerator.
Both parties “position”; they both want the single orange, but what is their “interest”?
Through dialogue at Mediation, it was established that the mother’s “interest” was that she wanted the orange for the rind while the son’s “interest” was that he wanted the orange for the flesh.
The parties agreed that their “interest” could be properly served by setting aside their “position”. They decided to peel the orange and give the mother the rind, while the son took the flesh. A mutually satisfying resolution reached and problem solved through discussions and getting to the real issue.
Mediation isolates and deals with the real issue or issues in dispute. The parties then collaborate to identify the available options and work together to attain a mutually satisfying resolution of the issue, or issues. The parties create their own resolution and on their own terms and conditions and are more likely to continue their personal or professional relationships after Mediation, than if the matter went to court.
Mediation is more cost effective, less stressful and less time consuming. Mediated decisions are more likely to be respected and adhered to by parties, because each party was involved in the decision making process and played an active part in reaching the final agreement.
Mediation is a win- win situation.
Most disputes can be settled during a process of Mediation. Usually, matters that are mediated include but are not limited to Family Law matters such as divorce settlements, child custody care and control, visitation rights, maintenance and child support, alimony and other ancillary matters. Couples who have decided to separate can visit Barbados Mediation Services and formalize a separation agreement in respect of any children, assets or other property, in a fraction of the time and at a fraction of the cost and stress.
Other matters such as, Landlord and Tenant disputes, debt recovery, contract disputes, personal injury and other insurance claims, employment disputes, family disputes can also be mediated but disputes which are expected to recover punitive or other damages which are behaviorally sanctioned are not recommended for Mediation, since these type of damages can only be awarded by the court.
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Some Mediators are qualified Attorneys-at-Law but Mediators are not required to have legal training... FAQS
Yes, of course, because Mediators do not give legal advice or counseling, mediators encourage parties to bring their respective attorneys to mediation... FAQS