We hope that you would consider us, Mediation Solutions Ireland, if you decide to use mediation to resolve your dispute. We have the expertise in many areas of mediation so we are confident we can be of help to you. Whoever you choose, it helps to know where to start and what happens:
- Firstly, think positively about mediation – it’s a private process, you remain in control, you still have legal advice on hand and you get to explore all viable options. Importantly, if you do not get the desired result from mediation, you still have the option of going to court.
- Your particular dispute will dictate the type of Mediator you require – see “Types” on this site. Whatever the dispute, we are confident we can be of service to you and we will travel anywhere in Ireland to assist
- You need to be comfortable with the Mediator. Talk to us and we will give you profiles of our Mediators – you can then choose one with whom you think can address your needs
- Look for a pre-mediation meeting so that the process can be explained to you and you in turn can ask all the pertinent questions: how long will it take? / how much will it cost? / where will it be?
- When you are satisfied with that you should require the Mediator to contact the other party (or your solicitor can also do that) to see if they are willing to partake in the process
- If both parties decide to go ahead, then both sides should be prepared to sign the Mediation Agreement – this is an agreement which lays down the ground rules for what will transpire during the mediation hearing and it covers areas such as fees, confidentiality, etc. The Mediator will not proceed until this agreement is signed by both parties – this agreement has nothing to do with the outcome of the mediation process, it is merely an acknowledgement by both parties that they will abide by the rules
- You should bring your solicitor to the mediation hearing – your solicitor is a support, can advise on any legal implications of your options and will cooperate with the opposing solicitor in drawing up a final agreement if such is arrived at
- The Mediator may wish to receive documentation relating to the dispute beforehand so that there is an awareness of the issues on both sides
- You must have the authority to make an agreement if one is concluded – there is no point in being at this process otherwise
- The Mediator will then make all arrangements – book a room / rooms at a hotel, arrange dates and timings, arrange meals, etc
- The process will start with both parties and their solicitors at the table – the Mediator will then explain his role, the rules governing the process, confidentiality and “without prejudice”, politeness, authority to settle, etc
- The process will continue as a “plenary” session (all parties at the table) unless the Mediator calls “caucus” meetings (meeting one or other party separately) to clarify issues or allow a party to explore an avenue – what is said at a caucus meeting remains confidential unless the Mediator is allowed to make information available to the other side
- The process is facilitated by the Mediator in this fashion towards an agreement unless something happens to disrupt the hearing or cause the Mediator to terminate the process – for example, if it became clear that one side was lying or using the mediation process improperly (for example, if evidence of money-laundering became apparent) then the Mediator is entitled to terminate.
- However, the process usually runs more smoothly and if agreement is reached, then the Mediator’s job is complete – it is the responsibility of the opposing solicitors to write up the agreement and get it signed by both parties. It then becomes binding unless it has been expressly agreed at the outset that the agreement need not be binding.