Helen is a trained, accredited mediator – including online training – with ‘excellent interpersonal skills’ and an ability to ‘keep the focus on coming to an agreement’. Helen’s experience is in mediating disputes where there is a high degree of strong emotion, sensitivity or parties are seemingly entrenched. Helen’s constructive approach begins at the first point of contact, prior to the mediation itself when she listens to what the parties are looking for from their mediation. She is noted for her calm and relaxed style, ‘remaining unbiased’ and she adapts the mediation process to accommodate the parties’ concerns. These will vary depending on the issues within the dispute, the nature and size of the claim. Helen helps parties reach resolution in cases which are commercially sensitive and complex, and where disputes have been ongoing for years. She doesn’t shy away from grasping what lies at the heart of the dispute, even where parties are poles apart. Helen brings the skills used in litigation namely energy, insight and stamina to effective use in the mediation process. At the moment, Helen arranges separate online meetings via zoom prior to the mediation to ensure the parties are comfortable with the technology and can get the most out of the mediation process.
Helen’s experience of dealing with vulnerable clients in litigation infuses the mediation process with stability and enables her to build rapport whether via zoom, skype or phone. In the workplace, Helen facilitates teams in conflict to build consensus and find where parties’ mutual interests and needs overlap. This can happen over a number of sessions and transforms work environments into productive, pleasant places to be. Helen facilitates restorative justice conferences between victims and offenders especially in loss of life cases.
Helen enjoys mediating regularly. She speaks at seminars to raise awareness and understanding of mediation and has previously volunteered with CALM to mediate community neighbourhood disputes and facilitate restorative conferences. Helen was one of the Judges at the International Chamber of Commerce Mediation Competition in Paris in 2015. Having been instrumental in organising Mediation Awareness Week in 2016, 2017 and 2018, Helen remains committed to furthering the understanding and use of mediation across the conflict spectrum. As a mediator on the panel approved for Court of Protection disputes, Helen mediates at legal aid rates for these disputes.
- Family Mediation – For better or worse, co-author with Kate Aubrey-Johnson, LAG April 2011
- Making Mediation work for you: a practical handbook – Kate Aubrey-Johnson with Helen Curtis, LAG, June 2012
- Civil Mediation Council Ltd
- Restorative Justice Council
What the parties say
- Remained unbiased – party in civil dispute
- Very personable and has excellent interpersonal skills – counsel in discrimination dispute
- Very calm nature showing empathy to the situation – party in multi-party insurance claim
- Helen was very good at managing the situation…and keeping the focus on coming to an agreement – party in landlord/tenant dispute
- Personable, straight to the point, kind – solicitor in probate dispute
- Very professional and did a wonderful job summarizing the issues…Helen gave each party ample time to speak and there was no feeling of being rushed – party in landlord/tenant dispute
- Firm but fair. Relaxed and matter of fact. Very clear – parties to a harassment dispute
- Helen was approachable, friendly and very clear throughout…she was extremely patient dealing with a difficult and longstanding issue – solicitor in a housing dispute
- honesty, straight-forward and direct, very professional and friendly and engaging – parties to a damages claim
- Very well prepared, engaged very sympathetically with emotional client – solicitor for party in IT dispute
- Stamina! Patience too. Explained things in advance – party in deputyship dispute
- Helen was excellent – well-prepared, knowledgeable, very pleasant and sympathetic to my client – counsel in statutory will dispute