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Mediation on the Heels of Arbitration – Competition or Peaceful Coexistence?

Thursday, 7th October 2016

"Arbitration has long been the favorite of the ADR family. Mediation, however, has established an increasingly relevant position for itself when it comes to resolving (international) commercial disputes quickly, cost-efficiently, and successfully. Efforts to render mediated settlement agreements enforceable persist and will likely further bolster mediation as an independent and, possibly, even superior alternative to arbitration. Yet, as a closer analysis suggests, mediation, just as arbitration, has its place and purpose. 

Commercial mediation offers many advantages, such as, in particular, a broad scope of application, flexibility of procedure, compatibility with other dispute resolution methods, time and cost-efficiency, and confidentiality. For all these benefits, many commercial agreements even require efforts to mediate before arbitration may be commenced. 

The statistics are also straightforward. According to the International Chamber of Commerce (‘ICC’), over three thirds of its mediation cases are settled successfully – on average in only 4 months and for about just 1 % of the amount in dispute. A simple analysis of costs, risks, and benefits easily explains why mediation was chosen for amounts in dispute ranging from below US$ 20,000 to well above US$ 500 million."

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Language: English
Contact: Victoria Pernt and Sebastian Lukic

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