Mediation is a collaborative process where parties who are in dispute are assisted by a Mediator, who is a third party neutral independent of the dispute, to come to an agreed resolution.
The mediator has no power to impose a decision but instead assists the parties to work out a solution that they want. The techniques employed include information exchange and exploring options to resolve the dispute, rather than focusing on legal rights.
The options available to the parties and the solutions reached at mediation, are much broader and more creative than can be made by a court charged with resolving the dispute. The process is confidential and governed by the mediation agreement entered into between the parties and allows their lawyers to fully assist during the process.
Mediation gives the parties to a dispute the opportunity to express their feelings about what has happened to cause the dispute. They are also principally involved in the process of option generation, settlement discussions and ultimate resolution by agreement.
There is no “search for the truth” that occupies most court hearings. Instead, parties have the flexibility to construct outcomes that are creative and based on their in-depth knowledge of the dispute.
Most matters that are dealt with at mediation settle.