‘No fault divorce’ – finally

The Government’s announcement in April 2019 of an intention to revise the 50-year-old legalities surrounding divorce proceedings has been met with a sense of cautious optimism.

Mediation – meeting sectors’ needs

In Singapore, the Singapore Mediation Centre (SMC) has dealt with over 4000 mediations since it opened in 1997 and construction disputes currently make up around 40% of the cases heard there each year. In March 2019, the Singapore Construction Mediation Centre (SCMC) was set up by the Singapore Contractors Association in response to demand from […]

Housing Disputes – a new system?

David Watkinson examines proposals to establish a Housing Complaints Resolution Service (HCRS) as put forward by the Government Introduction The recent Mediation World newsletter included an article by Bill Marsh (8/2/2019) headed “Housing dispute resolution proposals will impact developers” (and landlords as it appeared). A planning law expert was quoted as describing the proposals as […]

ADR and Civil Justice – Paving the Way?

David Watkinson looks at the Civil Justice Council’s report dated November 2018 Introduction Last December (2018) the Civil Justice Council published “ADR and Civil Justice” – the Final Report of its ADR Working Group. The 6 man (I mean that) group included 3 practising mediators, one being the Chair, and are all persons of distinction. […]

Leave the parties’ agreement in tact

Mediation, as mediators are very well aware, relies on agreement. Agreement is central to the process, from the initial agreement to mediate to, we hope, finalising the details of a Mediation Agreement. One of the powerful attractions of mediation is the parties’ control over the terms of any agreement reached, as opposed to handing control […]


Background The latest twist in the issue of cost consequences for a party which has refused a proposal to mediate a dispute has been played out in a specific ruling on costs by Mr Justice Arnold in Shakir Ali and Anr v Channel 5 Broadcast Ltd [2018] EWHC 840 on 28th April 2018.

A signed agreement is final

One of the attractions of mediation is that those involved in a dispute reach resolution and end it in a legally binding agreement, often a Tomlin order. The recent case of Johal v Elm Property Finance Ltd, decided by May J on 13 March 2018, had to consider the circumstances in which a Tomlin order […]

Greece Introduces Compulsory Mediation – by David Watkinson

Introduction       In 5th century BC Athens, the laws of the city were inscribed on pillars, originally made of wood, later of stone. An orator at a trial, therefore, wishing to refer the jury of citizens to the law (for it was not the role of the presiding magistrate to do so) literally pointed to […]

Dispute Systems Design (DSD) – ADR activism

DSD isn’t new. William Ury and colleagues in Harvard over 35 years ago developed a new possibility of resolving industry disputes based on mutual interests.  On 8th February 2018 at Kings College, Dr Diego Faleck described the practical impact of designing a relatively recent dispute resolution system in Brazil following the plane crash on 17 July 2007 in which 199 people tragically […]

Mediation competitions encourage confidence

The Civil Justice Council’s ADR Working Party produced its ADR Interim Report last October, appropriately during Mediation Awareness Week. Within the Report is the recognition that there is a challenge to make ADR ‘culturally normal’. One way of trying to achieve this is to ensure that today’s students – including law students – are very […]