Two stories currently making headlines in Canada provide the occasion to harken back to previous posts on this blog. Mediation Backlog – Ontario No-Fault Auto Insurance Disputes  In March of this year I blogged about the consequences of under-resourcing mandatory mediation programs. The Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO) had (and still has) a huge…

In June 2012 the Hong Kong Legislative Council passed the Mediation Ordinance (MO), the first piece of legislation on mediation in Hong Kong SAR. The MO was a much awaited and highly anticipated law and some mediation advocates have been disappointed in what they see as much ado about nothing. After all the MO appears…

I would like to focus this blog entry on a recent development of Singapore relating to agreements to agree/negotiate in good faith and some of the practical consequences that can arise from this case. In the English common law, the traditional position has been that an agreement to agree or an agreement to negotiate was…

The Czech Republic joined the EU Member States that have put the necessary rules in place to transpose the Directive 2008/52/EC on mediation in civil and commercial matters. The new Mediation Act (Act No. 202/2012 Coll., “the Act”) became effective on 1 September 2012. Whereas the Directive’s implementation was significantly delayed (Article 12(1) required Member…

To paraphrase Jane Austen, it is a truth universally acknowledged that mediation is confidential. Go on any training course, listen to any mediator’s opening speech, and the secrecy/privacy of the process will be affirmed and reaffirmed. In the commercial mediation arena, and these days most other practice areas, you will also sign a contractual undertaking…

“Thank God for the last minute; otherwise nothing would ever happen.” This old saying rolls through my mind as I sit to type this on my iPad in the departures lounge at Toronto’s Billy Bishop Airport located on the island just opposite the heart of this great city. My blog post is due at midnight…

Scotland is a practical nation. The list of its inventions includes penicillin, anaesthetics, steam engines, tarmac roads and even the decimal point (see http://www.magicdragon.com/Wallace/thingscot.html#Ta). Like the rest of the UK its culture was in part forged by the ‘practical man’ of the Industrial Revolution, rejecting grand theory in favour of trial and error. Its lawyers,…

It is a fact of life that lawyers will be involved in many mediations, particularly where they involve litigation matters. Despite initial reluctance to embrace mediation, the tide is turning as Sabine Walsh explains in her posting, Of Turkeys and Christmas – The Role of Lawyers in Mediation. A specialised form of legal practice is…

Our local mediator’s association here in the Northwest of Ireland recently ran a public seminar on mediation and the future of alternative dispute resolution. The two keynote speakers were two very distinguished lawyers, a High Court Judge and a Senior Barrister. As I looked around the room, it struck me just how many lawyers were…