Confidentiality

"Confidentiality is a really important feature of Mediation.  Participants find the privacy of the process highly attractive - it certainly plays a big part in the 'nothing to lose' approach that many people have to Mediation.  If it works confidentiality protects the outcome to make it effective.  If it doesn't work no-one will even know it happened.  Confidentiality is the driving force behind a lot of Mediation's successes."

All aspects of a Mediation are confidential and remain known to only the parties and the Mediator.  All participants are obliged to keep confidential everything that transpires during a Mediation.  The Mediation agreement is confidential.  This clear rule pertaining to privacy of process and outcomes is secured by:

  • the Mediation taking place in private, behind closed doors.
  • there being no recording of the Mediation meeting.
  • the prohibition on publicising any aspect of the Mediation.
  • the role of outsiders to the process being determined only by agreement between the participants.

Confidentiality and privacy are powerful encouragement to agreement - there is nothing to be gained from posturing, no audience to perform to and no scrutiny to impose pressure on the parties.  The fact that everything remains private makes mediation a very attractive and much less stressful experience than going to court.  Confidentiality encourages participation and facilitates the process of cooperation.

Can details of a Mediation form part of later court proceedings between the parties?

No, in the vast majority of situations the confidentiality of a mediation is absolute and cannot be used by either party or any other person in litigation.  If this wasn't the case it would provide a powerful disincentive to try mediation in the first place.  Mediation closes no doors and does not preclude the parties from utilising other processes should the Mediation fail to resolve the dispute.

Are there any circumstances in which Mediator's can be obliged or compelled to disclose details of a Mediation?

Yes, in very limited circumstances when there is material pertaining to the well being of children or actual or threatened criminal acts confidentiality may be set aside.  If you have any concerns about confidentiality ask your mediator to fully explain the position - if further issues arise seek legal advice.

 

Join Now APPLY

Certified Training Courses

The MII accredits mediation training courses which meet set training standards. The following training programmes have been recognised as MII approved training programmes.

view upcoming courses

CPD Training

The purpose of CPD is to ensure that Mediators keep their knowledge and skills up to date for the benefit of users of their service and for their own personal and professional development.

view courses