Mediation is a process in which an independent, neutral Mediator assists two or more disputing parties in resolving the dispute in a collaborative, consensual manner.
"Mediation is the most significant development in dispute resolution in my lifetime. The development of Mediation has been a dynamic break-through in how we resolve our differences. The practice of mediation will come to dominate the landscape of dispute resolution. This will happen simply because Mediation is such an effective way of resolving disputes. Like everyone here at the MII I passionately believe in Mediation's potential to resolve even the most complex, intractable disputes. But it goes much further - in fostering resolution through negotiation rather than confrontation Mediation creates resolutions which last and promote well being and happiness."
"The role of Mediator is a fascinating and challenging one. To be a facailitator rather than a protagonist, to be neutral rather than partial might give the impression that the role is passive, almost boring and unimportant. The reality is very different - the standard of the Mediator and their training has a profound impact on the success of the process. It takes a lot of qualities to interpret the communication of conflict and transform it into negotiation and agreement - it is a role which demands maturity, discipline, subtelty and highly developed communication skills."
The mediator's primary role is as an impartial neutral facilitator who assists the parties toward conciliation, negotiation and agreement. A skilled Mediator will use a variety of communication techniques to instigate or improve dialogue and empathy between the parties. The Mediator provides a safe, confidential and inspirational environment in order to give the parties the best possible opportunity to resolve their dispute.
The structure of the mediation process will vary depending on the type of dispute. Generally, an agreement to Mediate will be signed at the outset and the mediator will then meet with the parties together and / or separately, over the course of one day or in sessions over a number of days or weeks. Solicitors or other advisors may attend mediation sessions if required. If agreement is reached this will be recorded and signed at the mediation, and further steps which may be required to make the agreement legally enforceable may follow.
It is important to choose a mediator according to your needs and the type of dispute, who is properly trained and accredited. All accredited, practising MII mediators submit a profile which you can view in the “Find a Mediator” section, which will permit you to search based on area of speciality and geographical location as well. You can telephone or e mail the mediator and ask them for details of their service including the price and their expertise and availability. MII mediators are the best trained and most skilled in the country and have been assessed as competent to carry out mediations. They are obliged to adhere to the MII’s Code of Ethics and Practice, engage in continuing professional education (CPD) and hold professional indemnity insurance.
This again depends on the nature of the dispute and how complex it is. Sometimes mediation will be carried out in one day, and sometimes in a series of sessions over weeks or even months. The parties and the mediator will decide how best to structure the mediation. Mediation can be extremely effective in a very short period of time.