LASPO 1 year on – where’s Mediation now?

When the government sought to reduce civil legal aid expenditure by taking specific areas of law out of scope, it comforted itself that disputes could still be solved, but more cheaply, by the increased use of mediation. Since then the news has consistently reported an alarming reduction in the use of mediation, particularly family mediation. What’s going on?

David Watkinson reflects on ‘What went wrong with Mediation?’

So why is there less resort to mediation happening than might be expected, considering all the advantages? Because, as suggested by the article circulated by mediationworld this February,  these advantages are less apparent to parties to a dispute (users) than they are to mediators and courts – and for good reason. This article is […]

Mediation Takes Time – Helen Curtis marks mediation time

It seems a long time ago since I bemoaned the ending of my Italian holiday. Today, four months later, the cheque arrived! I hadn’t had the chance to meet with anyone from Trenitalia to tell them how I felt, but I was very grateful for the existence of their mediation service which enabled me to […]

PGF II SA v OMFS Company 1 Ltd – The Court of Appeal decides

Most litigants now know that silence is not golden. Could the defendant in PGF II SA v OMFS Company 1 Limited [2013] EWCA Civ 1288 have foreseen that the price of silence would have been over £500,000?  Time will tell how many litigants appreciate the potential cost of silence has just turned platinum.

Helen Curtis applies to the Mediation Commission

Rail travel is more eco-friendly. And slower. Which is great when you’ve got time to look at the scenery and not so great when your train is so slow and delayed that you risk not getting to Rome in time to connect with the overnight sleeper to Paris. When our very late train limped into […]

Helen Curtis greets the NMPA’s phoneline with relief

Apologies for blogblock recently. Not so much an exended summer, more holding our breath to see whether the rise in LIP (litigants in person) or SRL (self represented litigants) at courts around the country or the increase in the small claims limit to £10,000 is prompting an uptake of mediation. For civil disputes it’s difficult […]

Liz Davies welcomes Andrew Arden QC’s conversion to mediation for housing cases

In the latest issue of the Journal of Housing Law ([2013] JHL Issue 4), Andrew Arden QC, the Journal’s Editor and well-known “godfather of housing law” (Chambers and Partners), tells us how his views on mediation have developed. In 2005 he was “a fairly cautious convert”, concerned that mediation might not be appropriate for housing […]

David Watkinson suggests how to be an effective Advocate at a Mediation

Being an advocate at a mediation requires a different approach and different skills to being an advocate at a trial or other hearing. The advocate is not there: to convince a judge or jury of his/her client’s case to present evidence, examine his/her client and witnesses and cross-examine the other party and his/her witnesses to […]

July tax bill? HMRC has mediators

It may not be the most widely known fact: Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs have officials who are specially trained as mediators. Maybe you already knew this? If you didn’t and you advise businesses it could be information worth passing on.

Is the Mediation Agreement enforceable?

In the recent case of Frost v Wake Smith & Tofields Solicitors [2013] EWCA Civ 772, the mediator was said to have “performed a small miracle in producing an agreement in principle which ultimately matured into a perfected agreement pursuant to which the brothers were able to disentangle their interests”. The Judge went on to […]