Mediators’ Institute of Ireland (MII) Urges the 32nd Dáil to Expedite the Mediation Bill
MII opens new offices in the legal quarter
Thursday, 19th May 2016 – During her speech to mark the official opening of the MII’s new headquarters in Smithfield, Dublin, President of the MII Sabine Walsh said “We urge all members of the 32nd Dáil to support the publication and enactment of the Mediation Bill at the earliest possible opportunity.”
“The Mediation Bill, although cited in the last Programme for Government, published in draft form in 2012 and supported by all sides in the 31st Dáil, failed to reach the floor of the house”, said President Walsh. “Given the nature of the new political landscape, there is a great opportunity for this Dáil to demonstrate its effectiveness by enacting the Mediation Bill, which would divert many civil and commercial disputes from our courts and save billions in the process”.
As an example of the savings that would be delivered by the Bill, President Walsh pointed to the major cost savings that were identified by Tom Ward, Chief Clerk of the Dublin Circuit and District Courts during a pilot mediation programme that ended on 31 August 2013. Mr Ward reported that 831 cases reached agreement, which resulted in saving an estimated 11.33% of court sitting time and annual savings of €119,476 in courts service costs plus €225,164 in legal and board costs. This programme has now been extended in Dublin and Cork.
“The Mediation Bill would oblige lawyers to advise clients to consider mediation to resolve legal disputes. Our move to site our headquarters here in Smithfield provides us with the ideal base to collaborate proactively with the legal profession in the development and promotion of mediation”, stated President Walsh. “The fact that so many representatives of the legal profession have attended this evening’s opening demonstrates the professional interest in mediation. Our task now is to complete the job of making mediation an integral part of Ireland’s dispute resolution system and thereby making this cost effective, confidential and highly successful dispute resolution process readily available to everyone.”
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 previous Programme for Government called for the encouragement and facilitation of mediation to resolve civil disputes. The programme stated that mediation would 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.
About The Mediators’
Its registration number is 418250.
Registered Office: Unit 2.1, The Distillers Building, Smithfield, Dublin 7,
Mediation is a voluntary process of conflict prevention and resolution that allows the parties an opportunity to address their issues in a confidential, private and safe environment. Mediators are trained in conflict resolution skills and techniques and have the expertise needed to give people the best possible opportunity to resolve their disputes.
Mediation is effective:
The mediation process improves communication, narrows outstanding issues, defuses emotions and defines areas of agreement. Statistics show a success rate for mediation averaging 80 per cent.
For further information see www.themii.ie or contact The MII PR Director, Stiofán Nutty, at +353 87 6175488
The MII accredits mediation training courses which meet set training standards.
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.