Mediation and Alternative Dispute Resolution

Many of our members have strong experience of acting as advocates and advisers in mediations.

5 Stone Buildings’ members are fully up to date with the increasing prominence of mediation and other forms of alternative dispute resolution in civil litigation, recognising that case law now directly encourages attempts to mediate and/or to attend hearings for early neutral evaluation of a claim, and that there are potential costs penalties for failing to attempt to settle claims in this way.

The potential benefits of mediation to the parties to a dispute include:

  • The appointment of a mediator of the parties’ choice, with relevant knowledge and experience
  • The scope for a negotiated compromise to include terms which meet the parties’ needs more flexibly and fully than an order of the Court following a trial of the dispute
  • Saving time and costs
  • Confidentiality of disclosure of evidence, negotiations and terms of settlement

Mediation advice, advocacy and early neutral evaluation

Members of chambers at all levels of seniority are experienced as advocates and advisers at mediation, and at early neutral evaluation or dispute resolution hearings, which are becoming increasingly frequent in the Chancery Division and in the Court of Protection. Members also have experience of acting as appointed specialists to provide non-binding neutral evaluation of a claim to parties to a dispute.

Our members’ specialist knowledge of the law, including the law of mental capacity, trusts, wills and intestacy, tax, and the technical requirements of ensuring that a compromise is binding on all beneficiaries of an estate, including children and adults who lack capacity, assists clients in reaching terms of settlement which are workable and are in their best interests.

Specialist mediators

Henry Harrod - 5 Stone Buildings

A number of members of chambers are also accredited and experienced mediators, with specialist experience of complex trusts and inheritance disputes and of the property and affairs jurisdiction of the Court of Protection, and with insight into the sensitivities of clients involved in such disputes. Our mediators are familiar with multi-party mediations and those involving high-value and/or complex assets and interests in property, and are willing to travel in England and Wales or internationally.

Instructing a 5 Stone Buildings mediator

Members of chambers who are mediators cover a wide range of seniority, and the clerks will advise on suitability and availability of individual mediators for any particular case. The clerks will also advise on each mediator’s contractual and charging terms and deal with the circulation of a draft mediation agreement for signature, and arrange contact between the solicitors representing parties to a dispute and the appointed mediator.

We have limited mediation facilities in chambers, but the clerks can give up to date advice and contact information on mediation venues in London.