Mediation

2Mediation

What is mediation?

Mediation is a confidential process which gives the complainer and the practitioner the opportunity to meet together with an independent third-party so they can both decide how to sort out the complaint. The third party ("the mediator") helps them talk through the problem to see if they can agree a fair and reasonable solution. Mediation is voluntary, which means both parties must agree to it.

Why use mediation?

It’s Free

There is no charge for the mediation service.

It’s Quick

Mediation provides a more speedy way of resolving disputes than the formal investigation process, as mediation can take place in a matter of weeks.  This means an agreement is reached quickly, which gives both parties the chance to move on with their lives.  While it is always preferable if you attend the mediation in person, we can organise mediation to take place via Skype or telephone conference.

You’re in Control

With the help of the SLCC appointed mediator, you are given the opportunity to explain your position and to negotiate a settlement that is acceptable to you.  You are the decision-maker and have control over the outcome; the settlement is not imposed on you. 

It’s Effective

Approximately, 4 out of 5 mediations result in an agreement. People who negotiate their own settlements often feel more empowered and pleased with the outcome than those who use a third-party decision maker.

Parties who have reached their own agreement in mediation are also generally more likely to willingly follow through and comply with its terms than those whose resolution has been imposed on them.

What Happens at Mediation?

The process is flexible. Sometimes the meeting starts with everyone together in one room. The mediator invites one person to tell the others the circumstances around the complaint from his or her point of view. The other side is asked not to interrupt but to listen carefully to what’s being said. Then it’s the other person’s turn to speak without interruption.

After that, the discussion may continue in the one room, or the parties may decide they want to have separate meetings with the mediator. In these circumstances, the mediator goes between rooms having confidential discussions with each party about possible ways to resolve the complaint.

Another alternative is that the mediator meets with each person separately first and then invites everyone for a joint meeting to move the discussion along to see if there’s scope for an agreement.

 Who are the mediators?

We provide independent, experienced mediators from a variety of backgrounds. They must meet the standards required by the Scottish Mediation Register. Their role is to listen carefully and to assist the discussions. They are not there to take sides or to give advice. They won't make any judgements or decisions. For more information visit the Scottish Mediation Register.

More information on Mediation for practitioners can be found here.

If Mediation does not resolve the complaint or is not accepted as an approach, the complaint is passed to an investigator.

We can provide information in accessible formats and in your language.

Please email us on enquiries@scottishlegalcomplaints.org.uk or call us on 0131 201 2130.