What is Mediation?
Mediation is an alternative method of dispute resolution and the Court’s will look at the parties to try to resolve matters before going to Court.
Mediation will often be carried out between the parties’ legal representatives who will act as ‘Mediators’ through correspondence or a round the table meeting. Alternatively, parties to the dispute can instruct an independent professionally trained mediator.
The role of the mediator or your legal representative is to help each of the parties reach a solution to their problem and to arrive at an outcome that all the parties can accept and agree upon.
Will the Court be made aware of what was discussed? Can the other party rely on this?
Mediation is a voluntary and confidential process where the contents of the mediation are not disclosed to any party outside of the mediation. It is not uncommon for meetings to take place and for each party to sit in a separate room with their legal representative; the mediator will then move between the parties and may discuss matters separately with the parties’ legal representative. If you do not wish to see the other party face-to-face you will not be pressured or forced into this.
In the event that mediation fails the parties can still proceed to Court. As the process is confidential the Court will not be made aware of the details of what went on at the mediation.
How much does mediation cost?
If a professional Mediator is instructed it is common practice for the parties to jointly share the cost of the mediation; the costs of mediation vary depending upon the value and complexity of the claim and the number of individuals involved.
We are aware that contesting a Will or defending a claim is a difficult time for those involved; not only is there the pressure, stress and strain of being involved in legal action but this is at a time when you are grieving for a loved one and often involves family members. We pride ourselves on conducting inheritance disputes with the compassion and sensitivity required.
We can provide you with a unique service, as our team are specialised not only in bringing contested claims after the event, but also in administering estates and Will drafting, so we can advise on steps to be taken to avoid claims.