Five FAQs about mediation


What is mediation?

Often linked to industrial disputes, if you are having problems with your employer, mediation can be an effective way to deal with the dispute. Mediation uses an impartial third party to help the parties come to a mutually agreeable solution to the dispute. If your dispute has a legal component (perhaps alleged discrimination), you should ensure you have an employment law solicitor advising you.

Do I have to pay for any mediation service I want to use?

Generally if you agree to mediation with your employer, you would not have to pay for this service. Employers tend to cover the cost of mediation, as it can often result in an agreement that avoids employment tribunal action. However, if you need to use an employment law solicitor, you would have to meet the cost of these fees.

What happens if mediation fails?

If you have gone through the mediation process and still not reached an agreement, you can still take your grievance to an employment tribunal. Mediation is not like arbitration where you would give up your rights to use a tribunal if you agree to be legally bound by the decision of an arbitrator. Your employment law solicitors can explain the legal differences between mediation and arbitration.

Do mediators belong to any accredited services?

Yes, their respective governing bodies oversee mediators. If you are in England and Wales, the Civil Mediation Council would provide a mediator. In Scotland, an accredited mediator will usually belong to the Scottish Mediation Service which is managed by the Scottish Mediation Network. And in Northern Ireland, an accredited mediator can be found at the Mediation Northern Ireland service.

How can a solicitor help me with mediation?

Mediation is only an agreement to use a third party to resolve the dispute. As often the dispute can have a legal component, it is vitally important to have legal advice from an employment law solicitor. They can ensure that any agreement reached is in your best interests and can be enforced.

If you would like to obtain legal advice on mediation, Contact Law can put you in touch with a local employment solicitor free of charge. So, if you have any questions or would like our help in finding local employment solicitors please call us on 0800 1777 162 or complete the web-form above.

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