Are you unable to resolve a dispute and considering taking the case to court?
In court you hand over the decision making to the judge, whose role is to rule in matters of the law. In mediation, the role of the mediator is to work with both parties to reach a fair resolution both parties find agreeable. During this process, both parties actively contribute to proposals for resolution; very different from court proceedings.
Other benefits of mediation include:
- The process is less costly than court. Mediation costs are usually split between both parties equally. However, in certain professions and industries a free mediation service may be available for consumers/patients. For example, the Veterinary Client Mediation Service (VCMS) and Optical Consumer Complaints Service (OCCS) offer free telephone mediation service and consumers/clients can contact the services directly;
- Preparing and participating in mediation is far simpler and less time consuming than preparing for litigation;
- Mediation is private and not subject to public knowledge;
- Resolution can be achieved within a few days of the mediation discussions, often on the same day. If telephone mediation is possible, then neither party has to leave their home / workplace to take the call;
- The mediation process can assist both parties to assess their positions. Using questions to explore, clarify and dive deep into feelings, the mediator aims to establish real needs behind fixed positions. Mediation can focus on the emotional and personal issues involved in a dispute, not yet the financial elements. This is essential in order to bring forth proposals that are realistic, fair and reasonable.
The VCMS is a telephone based mediation service, assisting with complaints between veterinary practices and their clients. The VCMS has a resolution rate of 92%.
If you thought taking your complaint to court, think again! Mediation is an effective, low cost, less time consuming alternative dispute resolution option.