Mediation is an agreement-reaching process in which the mediator assists participants to reach agreement in a collaborative, consensual and informed manner. The mediator has no power to decide disputed issues for the participants. Mediation is not a substitute for independent legal advice.* Where legal advice is appropriate, participants are encouraged to secure such advice throughout the mediation process and are strongly advised to obtain independent legal review of any mediated agreement before signing that agreement. The mediator’s objective is to facilitate the participants themselves reaching their most constructive and fair agreement. The mediator has an obligation to work on behalf of each party equally, the mediator cannot render legal advice to any party, and the mediator will not render therapy within the mediation.
*Where legal advice is appropriate, participants are encouraged to secure such advice throughout the mediation process and are strongly advised to obtain independent legal review of any mediated agreement before signing that agreement. The mediator’s objective is to facilitate the participants themselves reaching their most constructive and fair agreement. The mediator has an obligation to work on behalf of each party equally, the mediator cannot render legal advice to any party, and the mediator will not render therapy within the mediation.
- Listening, clarifying, noticing
- Slowing things down, focusing attention
- Managing the process for your success
- Creating a space for productive dialogue
- Inviting into mutual understanding
- Guiding creative solution generation
- Helping you do what you need to do to arrive at fair and agreeable solutions together
Mediation Is Not…
- Legal advice or services
- Making decisions for you
The details which are shared in mediation are confidential except when disclosure is required by law. For instance, the law states that everyone has a duty to report a reason to believe that a child is in need of protection as defined by the Child, Family and Community Service Act. For a full description of the scope of confidentiality in mediation, refer to Mediate BC’s Standards of Conduct.
The nature of the mediation process requires participants to come voluntarily, freely willing and able to fully disclose all relevant information to the situation at hand, and ready to listen to information from the other parties.
The mediator must behave in an impartial manner throughout and after the mediation process. As such, the mediator shall not champion the interests of any party over another in the mediation. The mediator may communicate separately with an individual mediating party, in which case such “caucus” shall be confidential between the mediator and the individual mediating party unless they agree otherwise.
Mediators are bound by a mandate to cause no harm. As such, a mediator will not step into the mediator role unless she is confident she has the skill and experience to help.
Sharing your honest thoughts and feelings needs to be safe from coercion and manipulation, without repercussions of backlash outside of the mediation environment. If there are concerns about this dynamic in your situation, be sure to discuss those before beginning any mediation process.
A more detailed description of Mediation can be found in the Agreement to Mediate [PDF].
Reach out to me through this website, your own email account, or by phone. We’ll chat for a few minutes to get a good sense of whether mediation is a good fit for your particular situation. There is no charge for this initial conversation.
Agreement to Mediate
Once all parties have agreed to go ahead with mediation, they will sign an Agreement to Mediate [PDF]. This agreement also addresses the payment of fees.
Before meeting together, each party will talk with the mediator separately. These conversations may take between 30 – 60 minutes each and are billed at the regular hourly fee to each individual.
All parties meet together with the mediator. The time allotted for a mediation process is individual to the particular circumstance. The mediator will make a suggestion after pre-mediation as to how much time she believes is adequate. This time frame is open to adjustment as needed. Fees for group sessions are collected at the beginning of each session, and payment is typically divided equally among parties.
$125 per hour spent working directly with clients.
You are the experts on your situation and yourselves
The problem is not the other person, the problem is the problem
Most people want fairness for themselves AND for others
Most people are not “out to get” each other
Do you think mediation might help with your current situation?