“Hi, I’m Rick. I’m your mediator for today. I can’t decide what happens in this dumb dispute or how you resolve issues. My job is just to help people who are incapable of resolving conflict, like yourselves, find areas that you can agree on. That means I get to control what appears in the messages,…

Although infrequent, court cases against mediators are illuminating, helping us avoid being dragged into court ourselves. Here’s an example In Tapoohi v Lewenberg & Ors (No 2) [2003] VSC 410, the Supreme Court of Victoria, Australia, considered it arguable that a mediator owes a duty of care to the disputants. The mediated dispute This was…

There is an old debate in mediation circles about the qualifications (formal and informal) that mediators need to mediate, and what specialist knowledge they are expected to have. In some countries, mediators are required to be qualified lawyers – so that the legislator has answered at least one of the questions in this old debate…

While The Kluwer Mediation Blog is aimed at an international audience and often deals with issues of transcendent import to those interested in the mediation process (like Bill Marsh’s recent inspiring post on Leadership) I can’t help but comment on recent Ontario decision that will be of interest to the mediation community here, and perhaps…

In one of my recent cases, the question of impartiality appeared in quite an irregular way. It happened when I entered the mediation room where both parties were seated together with their lawyers. They were drinking coffee and making small talk. To my surprise, one of the lawyers looked quite familiar. Just for a moment,…

Having looked at The Rise of Co Mediation in Mega Mediations last month and the challenges such cases pose for mediators, let’s get a little closer to the inner workings of these mediations, especially at the intake stage. So many moving parts – the people, the paper, the posturing –  like a long haul plane sitting…

With the rise of the mega case – often funded class actions – a unique challenge for mediation is emerging. It is just as Danny McFadden says in his recent post on China’s modern day silk road initiative Big Projects, Big Disputes – Bring in the Mediators; “mediation is a proven dispute resolution tool for…

Troubling trends observed as an Ontario commercial mediator compel me to once again take up my chiclet-keyed sabre. That the following are indeed trends in commercial mediation in Ontario is unsupported by any reliable data – because no one keeps track. No one records. It’s all anecdotal. Still, I’m now closing in on 30 years…