An informal process during which an impartial third party assists disputing third parties in reaching a mutually acceptable agreement regarding their dispute.
Mediation typically involves five phases, one in advance of the mediation and the others on the day of the mediation;
1. Preparation – Get the information ready
2. Introduction – Welcomes & opening from each party
3. Communication – Discover the story of each party
4. Generating options and negotiation – Dig deeper
5. Agreement – Build agreement
Mediation costs may be significantly less than taking a case to court, especially if mediation is chosen prior to filing a lawsuit.
Parties keep control over the outcome of their own problem but can have their advisors present to assist and guide them. In a court the control lies with the judge or jury. Mediation is voluntary, and may be terminated at any time by a party or the mediator.
Mediation is confidential and without prejudice to any proceedings.. The mediator and parties must maintain, to the full extent required by law, the confidentiality of the information disclosed.
Mediators are trained in working in difficult situations. Both the facts and feelings are considered with the help of an impartial third party. The mediator helps parties think “outside the box” for possible solutions, broadening the range of possible solutions.
Since the result is attained by both parties and is mutually agreeable, compliance with the agreement is usually high. This again reduces costs as the parties do not have to pay lawyers to enforce the agreement.
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“The cost of litigation is a deterrent to any but the rich, the courageous and the foolhardy. Court cases, where one side wins and the other loses, is the nuclear option. It seems to me that this ownership of both the problem and the solution is one of the great attractions of Mediation” – Hon Mr Justice Peart
Mediation is a facilitative and confidential process in which Read more
Historically there has been little information available from prior family law cases to couples to help them determine how their case may be dealt with in Court.
To tackle this issue the Courts and Civil Law (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2013 was introduced and became operative in January 2014.
The 2013 Act allows members of the media to attend and report on family and child care hearings. The Act specifically prohibits publication that:-
A breach can lead to a fine of €50,000 and/or a term of imprisonment of up to 12 months.
If a party to a family or child care hearing is concerned about the publication of sensitive information or that a witness may be hindered from giving evidence they should apply for a media restriction.
If you are seeking advice in relation to family law cases please contact Paul Leonard or Lisa Byrne of our forensic and mediation team who have worked on a large number of these cases. Call 01 677 9000 or email: Paul firstname.lastname@example.org or Lisa email@example.com.
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