Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of using mediation to solve civil disputes. [12]

Practice exam question on using mediation to solve civil disputes, 12 marks. 9 for knowledge, 3 for quality of writing. Marked by teacher and got 12 out of 12. Hope it helps! 

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  • Created on: 18-02-13 12:04
Preview of Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of using mediation to solve civil disputes. [12]

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Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of using mediation to solve civil disputes?
One of the main advantages of mediation is that it is the parties which come to a
compromise, not the courts. This is good because the result will be something that both
parties have agreed upon and not a decision imposed upon them by the courts. Both parties
will be satisfied by the end result as they have both agreed to it. This means that both sides
are more likely to adhere to it as they were the ones who came to a compromise and made
the decision. However given that the process is not subject to supervision of the courts, the
final decision can be unfair, it can also be against the law. For these reasons, not having
court involvement can cause issues.
A disadvantage of mediation is that a lot depends on the mediator. The mediator has a big
responsibility in relaying messages from each side. The mediator may sometimes need to
withhold information in the interest of progression. This gives the mediator a lot of power
and given that they are not necessarily experts on law, they can make bad decisions which
can lead to a breakdown in communication between both parties due to the mistake of the
mediator. This could lead to a non resolved issue through no fault of the parties. However,
this lack of formality can be seen as an advantage as are no definite procedures that need to
be followed. Should the mediator not have the power to do as he wishes with the
information, mediation would not be as successful nor fulfil it's purpose of coming to a
compromise as presenting all information is a procedure in court and can be something that
stops an agreement being made.
Another advantage of mediation is that it is fast and convenient for both parties for the
reason that they do not have to wait for a court date. The parties can decide on a convenient
time and place. This could result in the dispute being resolved weeks if not months before a
court could. This is very helpful for parties as speed and convenience can be very important
in moving on with domestic issues. However, this haste could result in rash decisions being
made. The time period in waiting for the court date to arrive can help people cool off and
make better informed decisions than they would in the moment during mediation. The layout
of mediation is also subject to rash decisions being made whereas a court situation prevents


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