Mediation Experts Serving Vancouver, and British Columbia
Parties to a dispute may face significant hurdles in reaching their own resolution. Mediation is a voluntary process where the disputing parties engage an experienced, neutral and impartial mediator to help them overcome hurdles or roadblocks impeding a resolution to their problem. Mediation can be effectively used at any stage of a dispute, whether or not any other process has been commenced, including a lawsuit.
The mediator’s role is to ensure the parties have a fair airing of their interests and concerns and encourage a respectful, constructive and confidential discussion of the issues. This helps the parties to identify and explore solutions so that they can come to a voluntary settlement of their own making.
Mediation often occurs before parties decide to go to arbitration or court. Parties agree on a schedule for their mediation, including an end point.
In our process, we meet parties in pre-mediation meetings or teleconferences. We will examine whether all documents have been exchanged, consider who will attend the session, identify preliminary issues for discussion or resolution, so that the parties may make the most productive use of their time at the mediation.
The costs of mediation are limited to the fees and expenses of the mediator. If parties choose to have lawyers present, the parties are responsible for their own lawyers’ fees. However, unlike in the court process, the outcome of mediation will not result in a party having to compensate the other for their legal fees.
Mediation is private and confidential. In mediation, there will be no resulting public records. This makes mediation especially suitable for resolving disputes involving sensitive issues or information.
Most often, parties to a mediation choose the mediator. Mediators will work with the parties to agree on the most efficient and productive mediation process. No party is “captive” in a mediation session, as any party may end the mediation at any time. The ground rules for how a mediation is to be conducted is captured in the Agreement to Mediate which all the parties must sign before mediating.
During mediation, parties will have discussions as a group (open session) and may also break out into smaller groups where appropriate (caucus). A mediator will help parties identify:
- Their legal position and the other parties’ positions;
- Their non-legal interests and needs;
- The other parties’ non-legal interests and needs;
- Common and shared interests, needs, or goals;
- Potential solutions and alternatives; and
- The risks – legal, business, and practical – in not reaching a satisfactory solution through mediation.
The mediator will help the parties effectively and productively communicate, explore as many alternatives as possible, and ensure that the interests and needs of all the parties are addressed.
The parties’ goal at mediation is to reach a mutually satisfactory resolution of their dispute. It is a voluntary process.
If the parties reach a resolution, the terms will be drafted into a settlement agreement – a contract between the parties – which will only bind the parties once executed.
Should the parties not reach a mutually acceptable decision, the parties can proceed to arbitration or court to resolve their dispute. The parties, now armed with the mediation experience, will proceed further with their dispute with a clearer understanding of the conflict and depth of their disagreements.
Issues Typically Dealt With At Mediation
- Alleged Wrongdoing
- Budget and Resource Allocation
- Bullying and Harassment
- Class Size
- Conflicts of Interest
- Contracting Out
- Drug Testing
- Employer Policy
- Hiring Practices
- Managerial Oversight
- Red Lining
- Sexual Harassment
- Shift Scheduling
- Short and Long Term Insurance
- Tech Change
- Termination and Reinstatement
Contact us to discuss how we can help resolve your dispute.
Areas of Focus
- Business Disintegration
- Conflicts of Interest
- Contractual Rights and Entitlements
- Covid-19 & Mandatory Vaccination Policies
- Discipline and Termination
- Drug and Alcohol Policies and Testing
- First Nations & Municipal Government
- Pay Equity
- Privacy Policies
- Remote Work (WFH)
- School Law
- Sexual Harassment
- Whistler Blower Protection
- Workplace Health and Safety
Contact Neil Hain to discuss a Mediation matter
Neil Hain has prepared this document for information only; it is not intended to be legal advice. You should consult Neil Hain about your unique circumstances before acting on this information.
© Neil Hain 2021. All rights reserved.
Neil Hain Dispute Resolution
With over twenty years of legal experience and responsible for thousands of workplace investigations, mediations and administrative law decisions, Neil uses his expertise as a neutral third party to support organizations achieve business and workplace excellence. Neil Hain is based in Vancouver, BC, and his practice services clients across British Columbia and the country.
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300-1275 West 6th Avenue
Vancouver, BC V6H 1A6