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Mediation Costs and Fees – What to Expect.

Posted on 23/04/2018 · Posted in Mediation

Mediation is one of the fastest growing forms of Alternative Dispute Resolution (‘ADR‘) and is positively encouraged by the courts as a way of solving disputes in both civil and commercial matters, with disputing parties reaping ability to resolve the dispute in a confidential environment, time and cost benefits versus more formal judicial proceedings.

But how much does mediation cost? Mediation involves hiring a trained mediator to listen to both sides of a dispute and facilitate the disputing parties with the ultimate aim of coming to a mutually agreeable solution. So while a mediator is not a lawyer, he or she is a highly trained and skilled professional who must charge a fee for his or her time and service.

Communication leads to community, that is, to understanding, intimacy and mutual valuing”
Rollo May

The cost of mediation will depend on the specific mediator you hire and their level of experience, but will also depend on the length of time it takes to complete the mediation process, and may also vary based on the type of mediation, or even where the mediation takes place. The mediator might also charge additionally for specific ad hoc services such as letter drafting.

The CEDR (The Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution) charges the following fees for the mediation process:

Dispute Value Mediation Cost
Up to £65,000 £650 (£325 per party) plus VAT
£65,001 to £100,000 £1,000 (£500 per party) plus VAT
£100,001 and above 1% of amount claimed plus VAT

The fee covers a maximum of 6 hours of the mediator’s time. This will be divided between pre-mediation preparation and engagement with the parties of up to 2 hours and 4 hours mediation time. Should the parties wish to have more time with the mediator an hourly rate of £200 plus VAT will apply to the extra time as appropriate. When using this service the Parties are responsible for paying the mediation fees in advance and also for any reading time if the mediator is provided with a large amount of evidence.

Parties should also be aware that there are additional costs that they will need to allow for. The most important is the venue for the mediation. It will be necessary to find three rooms in close proximity to each other and with adequate sound proofing so that discussions may be held in confidence. Two of the rooms will need to be adequate for the number of people in each party and the mediator’s room will need to be adequate in size to accommodate everyone at the same time. As mediations can sometimes go on for some time, it is best to have facilities for tea, coffee and sandwiches available so that people are comfortable and relaxed. Mediations can prove very difficult if people are continually popping out to a coffee shop and sometimes they do not return. If this happens the mediation is over. The mediator can normally find suitable facilities if the parties do not have such available. It is also much better if the venue is in a neutral place such that both parties feel that they feel at home. Finally there are the travel costs for the mediator to get to the venue and if a long way from the mediators residence and the mediation goes on late in to the evening accommodation for the night may be necessary.

While mediation is not free of charge, versus court proceedings it can be a comparably very cost-efficient route to dispute resolution. Fees are generally split between the two disputing parties and are payable upfront, before the mediation begins. It is normally dealt with at the same time as the mediation agreement.

It is not surprising that mediation is frequently used where both parties can agree that the dispute needs resolving. As it is a voluntary facility, it is no surprise that if one party is not willing to enter into discussions, it is not possible to go down this route, unless there is a contractual arrangement to do so. Once the parties have agreed on the mediation, it can prove to be the best alternative for resolving disputes and can allow parties to remain with a relationship after the process is complete.

Expert Evidence is a professional firm concentrating on the four main areas of dispute resolution; acting as expert witnesses in financial litigation, mediation, arbitration and adjudication. The firm has a civil, criminal and international practice and has advised in many recent cases. Areas of specialisation include banking, lending, regulation, investment, and tax.

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Disclaimer – Please confirm any of the above views with your solicitor. Expert Evidence takes no responsibility or provides any guarantee that the views above are correct for your particular case or jurisdiction.