Minimising the cost of business disputes with Mediation
Anyone becoming involved in a legal dispute will know how complex, time-consuming and expensive it can become. For those involved in business, disputes need to be resolved and resolved quickly before unnecessary time is wasted, positions become entrenched and heavy costs incurred. Nevertheless, it is often easier said than done, principles and personalities are involved, and there’s always the hope that the problem will just go away.
Mediation is fast becoming recognised in many areas of business and public life as offering a highly advantageous way of resolving disputes. In mediation, the parties are helped to resolve the issues themselves by a mediator, who works with them to find practical solutions, which can meet the particular needs of the occasion. Disputes are seldom only about money. There are issues of communication, professional integrity and personal worth. In commercial transactions restoring the trust underpinning an ongoing relationship can be more important than financial compensation. Frequently what the disgruntled customer really wants is an acknowledgement that things weren’t done as well as they should have been.
Mediation saves time and costs and enables the parties to stay in control. The mediator can fit the process to the particular needs and convenience of the parties. Meeting together or separately, the mediator will help the parties to find areas of common ground, build bridges and eventually lead them to a solution, which if nothing else they can both live with. The majority of cases can be resolved within a day and cost a fraction of that of a Court case.
Nicholas von Benzon
Civil, Commercial and Family Mediator and Director of Cheltenham Mediation Services Ltd