Mediation has long been thought of as a more ideal mode of conflict resolution than when the parties involved instigate proceedings against one another. In the adversarial model, conflict-resolution is possible; however it is based largely on a concrete and relevant appraisal of the chronological particulars and the events that took place between the different parties when determining the best course of action to take in conflict resolution. This system is no doubt worthy, but it places a strain on the relationships of the parties involved and it has a tendency to skew the different positions and viewpoints in conflicting directions, portraying them in a relatively indifferent and stagnant way. In this type of system, one in which conflict-resolution is brought to the courts in the standard adversarial, the results tend to polarize the parties involved, which can run the risk of missing the point of mediation and conflict resolution altogether.
[...] There are of course other incentives as well, including the cost and time-saving benefits and the degree of certainty that goes along with mandatory mediation. It is for this reason that mandatory mediation should be considered as a plausible option as a requirement before taking litigation through the clogged court system. It certainly should not be forsaken just because it does not abide by the procedural rules that typically characterize litigation proceedings. Its intended goals are worthy, and should be built upon, not taken away from. [...]
[...] This statement was agreed upon by the provincial Civil Rules Evaluation Committee's evaluation of the program in 2001, about two years after it was initially implemented. This same sentiment was expressed by the Law Times who reported that the mandatory mediation initiative “disposes of cases quickly, reduces costs to litigants, and should therefore be expanded.” The reports and the observations have made it clear that the benefits associated with mandatory mediation are undeniable. Even in cases where a solution was not agreed upon in the mediation process, there was still value to be had in the process, as it often resulted in significant progress in the conflict-resolution process for those involved. On-going Incentives It has been shown since mandatory mediation was adopted in Ontario as a means of taking the dispute-resolution process out of the courts, that there are many advantages to it, such that it is a worthwhile endeavour. [...]
[...] Incentives for Settlement The concerns associated with mandatory mediation have been highlighted, and they are no doubt worthy concerns. However, there are also many positive aspects, in terms of the interests of the parties involved that support the idea of mandatory mediation. In the case of voluntary mediation, parties involved often have much to gain by coming to resolutions outside of the usual adversarial process. The various parties involved often have great incentives to settle disputes in this way, cost-effectiveness being one of the primary reasons. [...]
[...] A third benefit of mandatory mediation that is worth noting is the value that is to be had in the creation of certainty, or to put it in other words, the conciliation of the risk indisposed. Those participants who are weary of the risk involved in typical litigation are given the opportunity, through mediation, to have some element of control over the outcome. They are given control in the sense that they can either accept or reject the mediator's decision at the end of the proceedings. [...]
[...] This essay will serve to investigate the positive and negative attributes of the mandatory mediation initiative, and in doing so it will be clear what benefits have been increased from the old, voluntary mediation process, and which have been lost in the process. From this it will be clear that, in cases where the court orders the mediation process to take place, the will to sustain a continued relationship between the parties in dispute is not typically an option. As such, the mandatory mediation process is better suited for those parties who place less of an emphasis on maintaining their relationship throughout, and after the mandatory mediation process. [...]
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