3 Key Messages for General Election Candidates

As the official general election campaign gets underway, now is a very opportune time for us, as individual members of the MII, to engage candidates calling to our doors in relation to the Mediation Bill.

Although all parties are on the record as supporting the Draft Mediation Bill, which was published in 2012, the Bill never made it to the floor of the Dáil for enactment.

The MII met each of the major political parties in the latter half of 2015 to press for the Bill’s enactment. We will be pressing the new government to make the Bill a priority and ensure the bill is enacted as soon as possible, once they take office. By raising the Mediation Bill directly with candidates you will enhance the prospects of an early enactment of the Bill, so I urge you to communicate the following;

 

3 Key Messages for General Election Candidates

 

Ask each candidate to commit to pressing for the early enactment of the Mediation Bill and let them know that your vote depends on them committing to dealing with this issue

 

  1. The Draft Mediation Bill (2012) although ready for publication & listed in the Programme for Government never made it to the floor of the Dáil to be enacted.

     
  2. The Mediators’ Institute of Ireland estimated that legal costs in relation to civil cases in 2011 represented a sum of €1.17 billion. The enactment of the Mediation Bill would greatly reduce the cost for the individuals, organisations and businesses involved. It would also deliver better outcomes for the parties involved.

     
  3. If elected to government will you (and your party) take immediate action to ensure the Mediation Bill is enacted as soon as possible?

 

 
Candidates may be interested in learning about the Mediation Bill so the following information and statistics may be of interest to them.
 
Draft Mediation Bill 2012
Please follow this link to a copy of the draft version of the Bill which can also be found on the website of the Department of Justice http://www.justice.ie/en/JELR/MedBillGSFinal.pdf/Files/MedBillGSFinal.pdf
 
The Government's Legislative Programme for the autumn session, which was posted on the Department of the Taoiseach's website on 22.09.2015 http://www.taoiseach.gov.ie/eng/Taoiseach_and_Government/Government_Legislation_Programme lists the Mediation Bill at No. 59 in their B List – “Bills for which Heads of Bill have been agreed and text is being prepared”. However, they gave its expected publication date as 2016.
 
The 2011 Programme for Government called for the encouragement and facilitation of mediation to resolve civil disputes.  The programme states that mediation will deliver significant cost and time savings for businesses and the State, and the MII has demonstrated significant savings can be made through mediation. The MII estimates that legal costs in relation to civil cases in 2011 are estimated to have been €1.17 billion – a huge figure considering our current financial situation.  This figure is calculated from figures contained in the 2011 Court’s Services Annual Report.  The formula takes costs claimed by the winning party, multiplies this by two to get the costs for both sides of the case and then takes account of the fact that 90 per cent of civil cases are settled before Court.  The MII has estimated that litigation costs relating to civil cases in 2010 was €1.3 billion and in 2009 it was €1.2 billion.
 
 

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