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The Mediation Centre has adopted an enhanced version of the European Code of Conduct for Mediators as follows:
1. COMPETENCE AND APPOINTMENT OF MEDIATORS
Mediators must be competent and knowledgeable in the process of mediation. Relevant factors shall include proper training and continuous updating of their education and practice in mediation skills, having regard to any relevant standards or accreditation schemes.
Mediators must confer with all sides regarding suitable dates on which the mediation may take place. The mediator must verify that they have the appropriate background and competence to conduct the mediation in a given case before accepting an appointment. Upon request, they must disclose information concerning his/her background and experience.
Where not already provided, the mediator must always supply all sides with complete information as to the mode of remuneration which they intend to apply. They must not agree to act in a mediation before the principles of their remuneration have been accepted by everyone concerned.
1.4 Promotion of the mediator’s services.
Mediators may promote their practice provided they do so in a professional, truthful and dignified way.
2. INDEPENDENCE AND IMPARTIALITY
2.1 Independence and neutrality.
If there are any circumstances that may, or may be seen to, affect a mediators independence or give rise to a conflict of interests , the mediator must disclose those circumstances before acing or continuing to act.
Such circumstances include:
• any personal or business relationship with one or more of the parties;
• any financial or other interest, direct or indirect, in the outcome of the mediation;
• the mediator, or a member of his or her firm, having acted in any capacity other than mediator for one of the parties.
In such cases the mediator may only agree to act or continue to act if they are certain of being able to carry out the mediation in full independence in order to ensure complete impartiality and that the parties explicitly consent.
The duty to disclose is a continuing obligation throughout the process of mediation.
The mediator must at all times act, and endeavour to be seen to act, with impartiality towards all sides and be committed to serve all parties equally with respect to the process of mediation.
3. THE MEDIATION AGREEMENT, PROCESS AND SETTLEMENT
The mediator must ensure that the parties to the mediation understand the characteristics of the mediation process and the role of the mediator and everyone in it.
The mediator must in particular ensure that prior to commencement of the mediation all parties have understood and expressly agreed the terms and conditions of the mediation agreement including in particular any applicable provisions relating to obligations of confidentiality on the mediator and everyone taking place in the mediation.
The mediation agreement will be drawn up in writing.
The mediator must conduct the proceedings in an appropriate manner, taking into account the circumstances of the case, including possible power imbalances and any wishes each side may express, the rule of law and the need for a prompt settlement of the dispute. The parties may agree with the mediator on the manner in which the mediation is to be conducted, by reference to a set of rules or otherwise, .
The mediator may hear a party or individual members of a party separately, if they deem it useful.
3.2 Fairness of the process.
The mediator must ensure that everyone has adequate opportunities to be involved in the process.
The mediator must inform the parties, and may terminate the mediation, if:
• a settlement is being reached that for the mediator appears unenforceable or illegal, having regard to the circumstances of the case and the competence of the mediator for making such an assessment, or
• the mediator considers that continuing the mediation is unlikely to result in a settlement.
3.3 The end of the process.
The mediator must take all appropriate measures to ensure that any agreement is reached through informed consent, and that all parties understand the terms of the agreement.
Anyone may withdraw from the mediation at any time without giving any justification.
The mediator must, upon request and within the limits of their competence, inform the parties as to how they may formalise the agreement and as to the possibilities for making the agreement enforceable.
The mediator must keep confidential all information arising out of or in connection with the mediation, including the fact that the mediation is to take place or has taken place, unless compelled by law or public policy grounds.
Any information disclosed in confidence to mediators by one of the parties shall not be disclosed to the other parties without permission or unless compelled by law or grounds of public policy to disclose it.
In addition to the provisions of the European Code of Conduct above, all mediators:
Warrant that they shall maintain and continue to maintain Professional Indemnity cover up to a minimum limit of £1,000,000.
European Code of Conduct for Mediators:
To download a copy of the European Code of Conduct for Mediators click here