Mediation and how to prepare for it
Mediation is one of the extrajudicial dispute resolution means. It has nothing to do with meditation, media or medication. It is an informal and private process, which is led by an independent third party - the mediator.
Under Czech legislation, only a person entered in the Ministry of Justice Registry of mediators may provide services of a certified mediator. A mediator is an expert on effective negotiation that uses various communication techniques and strategies to help the mediation participants reach a settlement of their dispute and find a mutually acceptable solution. Mediators usually have legal or psychological education which closely relates to conflict resolution and communication. A mediator is always impartial and bound to maintain confidentiality.Compared to a judicial or arbitration process, mediation has many advantages:
Mediation works with concepts such as interests, needs and priorities of the participants, not the guilt, truth or justice;
Mediation searches for a solution, not for the culprit;
Participants may interrupt and terminate the process at any time;
Mediation respects the privacy of the parties and the confidentiality of the information communicated;
It is faster than the court - the average length of civil proceedings is at least 2 years, mediation offers solutions usually within days or months at the most;
It's cheaper than a lawsuit - the mediator´s fee is shared by both parties equally;
The parties form the content of the final mediation
agreement, they decide their own case rather than relying on other
authorities. To make the agreement enforceable, the parties present it to
the court, which approves it in the form of court settlement in accordance
§ 99 of the Civil Procedure Code. The approved settlement has the same effect as a final court judgment;
Mediation is a voluntary process, which starts with the signing of the agreement to mediate;
Each participant is entitled to terminate the mediation at any time by a written notice to the other participants, with no need to spell out any reasons for the termination.
Commencing mediation does not prejudice the parties' right to seek protection of their rights and interests in a court.
Mediation success rate
The success rate of mediation is about 70% and depends on the willingness of the parties to agree.
Cases suitable for mediation:
Parties are linked by personal or business relationships that must or may last;
If emotions complicate the search for a solution;
Costs, risks and stress associated with litigation are too big;
The dispute is complex and the outcome is uncertain;
The dispute is tricky, because its solution involves classified information;
It is necessary to avoid publicity of the dispute;
Costs related to arbitration or litigation are disproportionate to the disputed value;
Litigation takes too long.
How to prepare for mediation
It is important to prepare for the mediation to make is as effective as possible:
It is important to assess the situation realistically and creatively;
Leaving emotions and feelings aside, what are the facts;
What is the best and the worst possible outcome;
What are the main arguments of the other party and how they can be taken into account;
Is there any solution attractive for both parties;
What happens if mediation fails to resolve the dispute;
Your lawyer should explain the legal risks of the dispute and costs and time needed to resolve the dispute through litigation.