With little fanfare or news coverage, the four sexual coercion lawsuits confronting Bishop Eddie Long had the first hearing recently, with both sides opting for mediation to avoid a trial. Why no major news outlet or editorial columnist has discussed the implications of such a move is nothing less than egregious in nature. Despite the initial media crush and coverage and the incessant analysis of Bishop Long's statement on his website and "sermon," there's been nary a peep in response to the quest for mediation.
The Uganda Judiciary has announced plans to enhance mediation as a leading strategy to deal with all civil disputes filed in courts in order to fight case backlog. Speaking at the opening of a weeklong training of judicial officers in Kampala yesterday, acting Chief Justice Steven Kavuma said the initiative will tremendously reduce case backlog as well as improve public confidence in the Judiciary. “Resolution of disputes is faster. The parties design their own solutions rather than have one impose upon them and a win-win situation is created. Reconciliation, which is a cardinal principle in our Constitutional dispute resolution process, is therefore achieved,” Justice Kavuma said.
Employment lawyers don’t spend all their time in court, or acting as counsel to employers and employees. We also enjoy the opportunity to take on the role of an objective third party whose goal is to assist in dispute resolution. This blog post contains a series of tips on how parties should approach mediation, written based upon my attendance at hundreds of mediation hearings as counsel for the employee, counsel for the employer and as mediator.
A dispute over the constitutionality of Cleveland’s unique way of taxing visiting professional athletes has been referred to mediation, the Ohio Supreme Court announced Tuesday. In the lawsuit, former Indianapolis Colts center Jeff Saturday and his wife Karen allege that Cleveland unfairly charges visiting players higher municipal income taxes than other out-of-town workers.
How can policymakers and conflict mediation practitioners effectively engage with religion? Indeed, how can practitioners mainstream such engagement with religious actors and organizations? And, what do we even mean when we ask these questions? These were just some of the questions posed at Religion, Foreign Policy and Development: Making Better Policy to Make a Bigger Difference a recent conference held at the UK Foreign Office’s Wilton Park that brought together policymakers, academics and practitioners for two days of wide-ranging and intense discussions.
Current negotiations with Iran over its nuclear program in Geneva have raised hopes that there may be rapprochement between Iran and the West. This recalls an earlier potential 'thaw' in U.S.-Iran relations on January 7, 1998 when some U.S. officials reacted to the then Iranian President Mohammad Khatami's call for better relations between the United States and Iran in an interview with CNN correspondent Christiane Amanpour. But American analysts have apparently not learned from that event. The 'thaw' failed, largely because the Americans at that time focused narrowly on what they mistakenly thought to be the substance of President Khatami's pronouncements, namely that Iran was willing to capitulate to a whole list of American demands for 'better behaviour'. In so doing, they missed the real message that Khatami wished to send. His was a message outlining how rapprochement could proceed in terms of salutary communication dynamics between the two nations. The United States has largely repeated these misunderstandings in cross-cultural communication in the current negotiations, making them exceptionally difficult.
When Summit County Probate Judge Elinore Marsh Stormer took office in January 2013, she declared her intention to use mediation as one means of resolving disputes brought to her court. Judge Stormer developed a mediation program, and longtime Akron attorneys William Dowling and Douglas Godshall were appointed as court mediators. Concluding its first year of operation, the mediation program has proven to be a success, enabling the parties involved to resolve numerous disputes without the need for lengthy litigation and court trials.
A northern New Jersey honor student who has sued to get her parents to support her after she moved out of their home had her initial request denied Tuesday by a judge who cautioned that the case could lead to a 'potentially slippery slope' of claims by teenagers against their parents. Rachel Canning had sought immediate relief in the form of $650 in weekly child support and the payment of the remainder of her tuition at Morris Catholic High School, as well as attorney's fees. State Superior Court Judge Peter Bogaard denied those motions but ordered the parties to return to court on April 22, when they will present evidence and testimony on the over-arching question of whether the Cannings are obligated to financially support their daughter. Rachel Canning, a high school senior, has already been accepted by at least one college and is seeking to have her parents pay some or all of her tuition, attorney Tanya Helfand told Bogaard Tuesday.
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What Movie Do You Want To Make? (3/08/14) Jeffrey Krivis The arc of a litigated case has many narratives, particularly when it comes to settlement opportunities. While some cases fall into standard, often repeated formulas, others cannot be scripted. Yet, there are moments in the cycle of a case where some litigators simply react to events as they unfold rather than actively creating the settlement drama. The drama of a case is like storytelling in a trial, where events unfold in front of an audience of people who are in a position to evaluate and put a price on the story. Knowing what scripts are available in advance will assist in being less reactive and more resilient in achieving a better process and successful resolution.
A Practical Guide to Comprehensive Conflict Management Systems (3/07/14) Carole Houk, Deborah Katz Many organizations have embraced alternative dispute resolution. Yet, they continue to search for more comprehensive approaches that help them not only to resolve conflicts that have escalated into disputes but also to manage risk, manage relationships and manage their bottom line. Is the answer to this search integrated conflict management systems (ICMS)?
Lessons in Mediation: Use Your Words (3/07/14) Gary Harper How often have found yourself in conflict with someone who you felt was “acting like a spoiled brat” or “behaving like a child”? If you have, you’re in good company. You’re also closer to understanding these situations than you thought you were, for difficult behaviour in adults often reflects strategies learned as children. 1 Comment
Bilingual Mediation, Part 2 (3/07/14) Bernard Nguyen As a dispute resolution practitioner, one must constantly assess oneself in various elements, aspects and total competency before taking a task, assignment, or mission to manage the process of mediation where parties are not able to communicate in a culturally competent level. To be an effective bilingual mediator, one should possess the cultural sensibility and linguistic competency to quickly create a rapport that subsequently opens parties up for amicable dialogue.
The Case for Forgiveness in Legal Disputes, Part 2 (3/07/14) Eileen Barker The case for forgiveness in legal disputes. Without emotional healing and forgiveness, even when a case is settled in mediation, parties are often left with more hostility and mistrust than when they began. This article discusses the importance of encouraging forgiveness in clients.
Mediation Feedback: Who is it For? (2/28/14) Michael Jacobs This article is the result of switching seats – moving from practitioner to party. Every mediation service I've worked for sends out feedback forms. Sometimes immediately after sessions, sometimes a few weeks later. This experience made me question the importance of mediation evaluation.
Bilingual Mediation (2/28/14) Bernard Nguyen Recently, numerous websites marketing bilingual mediation services in the States have appeared. To many, this may be a negligible appearance, but to some, it is a core part of their own breath and heartbeat, because they are either active amongst the community that inherited a culture and language other than English; or they are living isolated, sustained by a culture and language other than English; for instance, the deaf community and perhaps the blind community as well.
The Case for Forgiveness in Legal Disputes (2/28/14) Eileen Barker Although the notion of forgiveness may seem far afield from the world of law, forgiveness is a powerful and important tool for conflict resolution. Litigants need legal solutions, but they also need peace, healing, and closure. Forgiveness provides a vehicle for achieving all of these. 3 Comments
WYSI[N]WYG (2/28/14) Ian MacDuff In the early days of personal computing, the development of the “graphical user interface” was accompanied by the acronym, WYSIWYG: “What you see is what you get.” While some frustrated computer users know that this was never entirely true, or might only have been true for the computer boffins who designed the interface, the idea was nevertheless an important one: what was there on the surface was what you had to deal with – folder and files and trash cans were all there on the virtual “desktop.”
Best Practice Guide on the Use of Mediation in Cross-Border Disputes (2/21/14) Jamie Walker, Zeno Daniel Sustac Sometimes, the act of justice leaves one or more parties being unsatisfied with a judicial decision and generates a resolution based on the “loser-winner” paradigm. The consequence is often, in addition to the preservation of their conflicted status, the prolonging of the expensive and stressful judicial dispute. Mediation, as an alternative method of conflict resolution, starts with the principle of seeking to most capably satisfy the parties’ interests with a sustainable agreement based on free will. This approach, in the context of globalization, confers mediation with the quality of being an effective cross-border and cross-cultural method of conflict resolution. This article is an excerpt of a thesis analyzing the benefits and unforeseen consequences of mediation in cross-border disputes. This article focuses on the importance of training mediators on cross-border disputes.
Third Party Assisted Negotiation and High Pressure Settlement of Disputes (2/21/14) Rachel Virk After twenty years of marriage, two parties separate. They are each college educated and gainfully employed. The parties have two children whom they hope to send to college, ages 13 and 15. They have amassed many assets during their marriage. This articles discusses how our current legal system does not have an effective way of dividing the mutually valued sum of these two people's lives.
Compassionate or Benevolent Divorce (2/21/14) Roger Ley This is an essay on compassionate divorce and the role of lawyers in the divorce or dispute resolution process. For the parties, the core of my system is to negotiate for the welfare of both sides. For the lawyers, the core is to throw away the law books and let imagination help the lawyers find creative resolutions to their cases.
The Argument As A Persuasive Tool In Negotiation (2/16/14) Jeffrey Krivis Mediation, like the sketches in Monty Python, is like theatre. In order to succeed, the actors must keep the scene going forward without denying the other actors the opportunity to be heard. Arguments work on the stage provided they are done in a way that maintains the flow of the scene, allows conversation to be fluid, and doesn’t box in the other players. 2 Comments
Marital Mediation is Not Therapy (2/14/14) Dr. Lynne C. Halem Mediation is not therapy. Mediation is a problem solving process in which the three participants, husband, wife, mediator, determine the issues to be tackled, what information is needed to embark on the process and what were the objectives to be gained. 4 Comments
Like other briefs, a quality mediation brief starts with a careful evaluation of the audience. Who will see your brief? Who is making the settlement decision? Who are you trying to influence? Too many mediation briefs try to influence only the mediator. Every mediation is different. Every case has its own settlement personality. But there are recurring themes and issues that confront attorneys whose clients are heading to mediation.
Whose Fault Is It? (2/07/14) Shannon Rios Paulsen When parents are arguing, children are typically caught in the middle. The children try to figure out who is at fault and what they can do to stop it. This article suggests that what children need is not a place to assign blame, but a place of peace.
What Went Wrong with Mediation? (2/07/14) Constantin-Adi Gavrila Presenting recently the results of the study on ‘Rebooting’ the Mediation Directive, Giuseppe de Palo talked about the “European Union mediation paradox” – the existence of a “highly acclaimed, efficient, effective process that very few people use”, in his own words – and the need of “rebooting” the implementation of mediation process in the EU in the light of the limited effects of current legislation upon the number of civil cases mediated. 4 Comments
Curso de Posgrado (2/06/14) Alberto Elisavetsky Nuestro siglo nos presenta permanentemente situaciones paradójicas. La Globalización puede lograr que los avatares económicos de Gambia tengan decidida influencia en Bolivia, pese a que crecen y se multiplican los medios de comunicación, cada vez las personas se sienten más solas. La fragmentación del saber llega hasta límites tan increíbles que el grado de sofisticación en las especialidades parece no tener fin y a veces se pierde la noción del todo por el imperio de las partes. Internet irrumpió en nuestras vidas para quedarse, como sobreponernos al alud de información, de qué manera articular los avances tecnológicos con todas las profesiones.
Mediate is Top Ranked Mediation Website (2/04/14) Mediate.com Mediate.com is ranked the top mediation and dispute resolution website by Alexa in its February 1, 2014 global website rankings. In business since 1996, Mediate.com has over 15,000 searchable mediation articles, blog posts, news items and videos. Mediate.com also hosts the most used mediator directory and offers mobile friendly website development, professional promotional services and cloud-based case management systems.
The Best Mediation Secrets (1/31/14) Jacques Joubert Naturally not all clients are expected to be amenable to mediate their disputes, but if given the choice, they will be fully responsible for getting on the path to the courthouse of the mediation table. The clients will be able to make an empowered decision, and attorneys can rest knowing that their clients had enough information to make the right choice for them. This author shares his views on this from the mediation world in Cape Town.
Intercultural Mediation (1/31/14) Guillermo Kleinlein Throughout time, Intercultural Mediation in China has become the preferred method for Dispute Resolution. It preserves social peace in a country with huge extensions and diverse orography, and with a population of various ethnic origins. We shall compare the subjacent conditions with those in the Argentine Republic and propose some alternatives to implement such method as a Dispute Resolution System.
Cultural Diversity in Mediation and Conflict Resolution (1/31/14) Farhana Chowdhury As a Mediator, we have the role to steer clients to reconcile their differences in an arena where they mutually agree to a resolution. In order to navigate our clients to a resolution that is amicable and comfortable, we have to identify the underlying issues of the conflict. To fully identify the underlying issues of a conflict for clients that are culturally diverse, it is pertinent to attain a basic understanding of the client’s cultural background and anticipate how it may impact the issues leading to the conflict. For mediators who practice in areas where cultural diversity is eminent, a basic understanding of their cultural differences is often the key to evaluate strategies employed to reach an agreement.
Mediación Intercultural (1/30/14) Guillermo Kleinlein A través de los tiempos, la Mediación Intercultural en China se ha convertido en un método preferido para la Resolución de Disputas, a la par de preservar la paz social en un país de grandes extensiones y disímil orografía, con población de variados orígenes étnicos. Analizamos sus condiciones subyacentes comparadas con las existentes en la República Argentina y proponemos alternativas de implementación de tal método como sistema para la Resolución de Disputas.
Demystifying American Divorce Law (1/24/14) Larry Gaughan The misconception that there may be a fixed "legal" solution for many mediated divorce cases has created unnecessary difficulties in communication between mediators of different professions. A proper understanding of how the formal system of divorce law works (and often doesn't work) may help to bridge these gaps. This article is intended to enable mediators who are not attorneys to be more comfortable with some useful concepts and guidelines inside the legal box. It is also intended to enable mediators who are lawyers to expand the scope of their skills and knowledge into the important areas of divorce settlements outside of the legal box.
The Parents Left Standing (1/23/14) Shannon Rios Paulsen There are many different scenarios where parents leave the life of their child. This article goes over some of these scenarios, as well as what to say to a young child, such as the parent is learning to be a better parent and person and having your child write a letter to or draw a picture for the other parent. Remember you chose to have your children, please continue to choose them. I can tell you that adults are much less forgiving than children.
Mediation Skills: Non-Violent Communication and Aikido (1/18/14) Jerry Green What is the relationship between Non-Violent Communication (NVC) and Embodied Compassionate Communication or Emotional Aikido? The answer to this question begins by understanding that NVC is a language skill and does not encompass somatic training.
Mediation in Hotels (1/17/14) Sandra Untrojb The relationship between employees of different hierarchies and each of the departments that are part of the organization chart of a hotel such as Food and Beverage, Front office, Housekeeping, etc., results in that although all parts of the structure tend to say that no one in their company takes bad to anyone, if you look a little more closely, you discover behaviors they pit a sector against another by opposing interests.
Mediacion Aplicada a Empresas Hoteleras (1/15/14) Sandra Untrojb El situación de relación permanente entre los empleados de las distintas jerarquías y de cada uno de los departamentos que componen el organigrama del hotel como ser Alimentos y Bebidas, Front- office, Housekeeping , etc, trae como consecuencia que aunque todas las partes componentes de la estructura tiendan a decir que en su Empresa nadie se lleva mal con nadie, si se analiza con un poco más de detenimiento, se descubran comportamientos que enfrentan a los integrantes de un sector con los de otro por intereses opuestos.
The Role of Diversity in Mediation (1/10/14) Amanda Maxted, Jeffrey J. Beaton As mediators we have been taught that disputes are more likely to be people-problems than legal-problems. Instead of listening only to a participant’s position, we should search for underlying interests, wants, values, and needs. Mediators discover that by learning more about human nature, they are able to understand people's motives. In turn we can encourage participants to reach agreement or helpful change. 3 Comments
Mediacion Escolar y Los Derechos de Ninos Y Adolescents (1/10/14) María victoria Marun Enseñar las habilidades de resolución de conflictos en las escuelas provocará el descenso de los problemas disciplinarios y proveerá de cimientos y habilidades para la próxima generación. Es nuestra intención que todos los estudiantes tengan la posibilidad de ser instruidos acerca de la resolución de conflictos y habilidades comunicacionales
Mediation Works for Family-Run Enterprises (1/10/14) James MacPherson In the Arab World, family firms make up 85 per cent of the region's non-oil GDP. While many are small to medium-sized enterprises -
the cornerstone of any successful economy - the success of the GCC economies, coupled with the enterprising minds of business
leaders during the region's boom years mean that a significant number of these organisations have become multinational and highly
Downton Abbey Negotiations: A Primer on Surviving in Turbulent Times, Then and Now (1/09/14) Robert Benjamin The PBS television drama series, Downton Abbey, depicting the turbulent social, cultural, and economic times in England a century ago, has justifiably captured the imagination and interest of many viewers. Less noticed is the unusual attention given to the negotiations that necessarily occurred and allowed people to endure those disruptions. Negotiation strategies and techniques are presented throughout in a thoughtful and realistic manner that makes the program relevant to present day practice and worthy of study. 1 Comment
ADR, ODR, e-Mediación y Negociación Automática (1/05/14) Andres Vazquez Los mecanismos en línea que se vienen implementando en todo el mundo para la resolución alternativa de conflictos, abarcan procedimientos con características propias, y diferentes perfiles conceptuales, en donde las fronteras –en ocasiones extremadamente sutiles- existen y determinan su naturaleza jurídica.
Are More Changes Afoot? Mediation Trends in 2014 (1/02/14) Don Cripe Personal injury law is far more complicated in application than many people might believe. The title of this piece is thus phrased as a question because… frankly… I don’t know the answer. This article discusses the future of the mediation field.