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The cost of litigation, from discovery to judgment, generally continues to rise in recognised centres of excellence such as the US, UK and Germany, meaning that clients are more concerned than ever with dispute avoidance or resolution at the lowest possible price. In this commercial environment, and given that the cost of arbitration also continues to rise, contributors to our research have highlighted the opportunity to further mediation’s reputation as a user-friendly, cost-effective and flexible form of dispute resolution that cannot only resolve disputes amicably and confidentially but facilitate stronger working relationships between commercial parties. read
Lucky, a 55-year-old female elephant last year at the San Antonio Zoo, has lived alone for more than two years. Elephants are highly social animals. Still, zoo officials do not want to move her. Could mediation be a way to improve Lucky’s life? That’s the hope of City Councilman Joe Krier, who has called on the San Antonio Zoo and Animal Legal Defense Fund to head to mediation about Lucky’s inadequate living conditions. read
Established in 2014, the Kane County (IL) Mandatory Residential Foreclosure Mediation Program served 366 homeowners in its first year. The program, administered by Chicago-based Resolution Systems Institute ("RSI") through funding from the Illinois Office of the Attorney General and support from the Kane County Board, was established to assist homeowners struggling to navigate the court system with a fair and efficient process for resolving what happens to their homes. A recently completed evaluation found that the IL mediation programs are meeting this goal. read
In July 2014, during a session of UNCITRAL that took place in New York, a Proposal to undertake work on the preparation of a convention on the enforceability of international commercial settlement agreements reached through mediation/conciliation was put forward to UNCITRAL by the government of the United States of America. If the Convention is created and taken up, it will create a strong international legal framework for mediation. read
Police officials say they are using mediation to help work through the issue of a contentious traffic stop that was recorded on cellphone video. A statement from the city of Dayton said a Dayton police officer, who they didn't identify, pulled John Felton of Michigan over Aug. 15, 2015, for failing to signaling within 100 feet of a turn. "During the stop the Officer additionally acknowledged that Mr. Felton made sustained direct eye contact prior to being stopped," the city's statement reads. "The traffic infraction was verified by the video; however making direct eye contact with an officer is not a basis for a traffic stop." read
When a dispute arises, parties to a contract generally look for ways to stay out of court if they can. Including a clause requiring mediation before litigation is one way to accomplish that goal. This kind of clause can make good business sense: after all, being warned of a dispute and having the chance to try and resolve it in mediation is usually preferable to being served with a summons and a copy of a complaint. Plus, a successful mediation is faster and cheaper than litigation and often more private. But what happens if a party fails to honor a prelawsuit mediation requirement and instead runs directly to court? read
The state and the Seminole Tribe are headed into mediation — shepherded by a lawyer whose past clients include Mick Jagger and Leona Helmsley — to resolve a possible standoff over the future of blackjack and other banked card games at most of the tribe’s Florida casinos. The tribe formally requested mediation last month after negotiations over the card games — part of a $1 billion, five-year deal — stalled this spring. read
More and more couples getting divorced are battling over their pets. One woman in Charlottesville spent years in mediation working out a deal on how to split time with their little beagle mix. According to a survey, 22 percent of attorneys say they're seeing more courts allow pet custody cases and 20 percent say more courts are considering pets an asset during divorce cases. read
Various state and federal statutes exist to protect and compensate employees whose employers retaliate against them after they disclose certain fraudulent practices to the employers or government agencies. These are known as Whistleblower statutes. Employment claims under Whistleblower statutes are a complex and growing area of the law. Whistleblower actions typically involve highly sensitive information and serious allegations that companies would prefer to keep out of the public view. Therefore, ADR is ideally designed to address Whistleblower actions. read
Dealing With Defensiveness In High Conflict People (7/14/15) Bill Eddy When most people think of high conflict people (HCPs), they think of bad behavior. The goal seems to be to get them to STOP their bad behavior, by verbally motivating them to have insights into how bad they are acting. However, the high conflict behavior of HCPs is not driven by logic and self-awareness. If you don’t understand this and don’t accept this, you will waste your time arguing for insights and miss your opportunities to calm them down and set real limits on their behavior.
Conflict Resolution Day is October 16, 2014 (10/01/14) Donald Lloyd ACR's original intention was for Conflict Resolution Day to be promoted by community centers around the country. The belief is that if the public has a better understanding and awareness of mediation, they will be more likely to hire a mediator. And the more mediators that are hired, the better for all of us!
What Happens on the Bus, Shouldn’t Stay on the Bus! (9/02/14) Patricia Porter With the start of 2014-2015 school year in full swing, children across the country will be boarding the school bus to arrive before the morning bell sounds. According to the National Highway Safety Administration, school buses are the safest mode of transportation for getting children back and forth to school. But how safe is a child from the other children inside of the bus? School bus bullying is becoming a growing concern among parents, school administrations, and bus drivers. According to the U.S. Department of Education 10 percent of school bullying occurs on the school bus. Stopbullying.gov defines bullying as “unwanted, aggressive behavior among school aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time.
The Paradox of Creativity with Compassion in Mediation (5/10/14) Evan Ash Turn the other cheek, give more than is required, respond to the need of another person, all these when you may be faced with pain and loss. Do crazy things like love your enemy, pray for them? The great mystery is the power that comes from the paradoxes of life.
Behind Bars and Behind the Gun (11/04/13) Ken Johnson Behind bars and behind the gun: Answers for America's juvenile justice problem and catabolic ommunity-based conflicts. With a rise of deaths, abuse cases, and other atrocities in the Juvenile Justice System there has been questioning as to whether the present paradigm of understanding is the most appropriate solution available for handling issues of wrong behavior by adolescents. Ultimately, the author urges communities to become more involved in the justice system to urge Collaborative Justice-based solutions in juvenile justice issues.
Individual Admiration for Dominant Groups (7/08/13) Nick Redding Does our admiration for powerful and dominant groups maintain the social hierarchy? This is the question explored in a recent a study. The stud authors describe previous research suggesting that emotions play a key role in the maintenance of relationships between groups, and more specifically, that emotions such as anger and admiration influence whether groups will challenge dominant groups within the social order.
Poor Behavior 12: Lack of Openness or Honesty (5/21/12) Vivian Scott When people don’t know what’s happening they often get a movie going in their head that helps them explain the situation. The film versions they conjure up are rarely romantic comedies; rather, most resemble horror movies with terrible endings. A lack of honesty or openness at work can put everyone’s mental movie-making skills to the test.
On Beating Bullies (5/14/12) Michael Jacobs Tackling bullying may involve a counter-intuitive approach. While naming and shaming may leave us feeling morally superior, it might also produce ever more subtle forms of bullying. This article argues that we need to encourage those of us who feel like kicking butts to ‘come in from the cold’.
Suing Over an Online Review (1/30/12) Colin Rule ‘A Dallas law firm has filed a lawsuit seeking to learn the identity of a commenter calling himself “Ben” who posted a bad online review.
The Lenahan Law Firm claims defamation and seeks $50,000 in damages, Texas Lawyer reports. Partner Wes Black says the suit will allow the law firm to subpoena Google to learn the commenter’s identity.
Dismantling Systems of Bullying (11/28/11) Peter T. Coleman Bullying is a public health problem that affects 20% to 30% of students on a daily basis and is associated with depression, suicidal thoughts, substance abuse and a decreased sense of empathy for others. It is also a common problem in other adult workplaces.
Bullying Can Cause Lasting Injury But There Is Hope (12/13/10) Lorraine Segal According to a recent article in the Boston Globe, brain scans of teens who have been repeatedly bullied revealed the same changes as those who have been physically or sexually abused. In some individuals, the negative changes persisted years later.
Mishandling Bullying And Harassment Will Hijack The Diversity And Inclusion Agenda (9/13/10) John Crawley A crisis is brewing as two reports predict a potential surge in bullying and harassment grievances at work, and a lack of confidence in the ability of management (particularly in the public sector) to handle bullying and harassment, conflict and relationship issues. Bad practice on bullying and harassment and relationship issues will undermine employees’ and customers’ confidence in diversity and inclusion initiatives. The cost of mishandling these will also divert time and money away from building relationships and engagement through diverse workforces.
Bullying Responses (8/23/10) Jeff Thompson A new book by an Australian expert on bullying in schools has set out six methods used by teachers to tackle this scourge of the playground.
What Is A Bully? (8/09/10) Alan Sharland How a commonly used word is often not explored to clarify what is meant when someone uses it - and how that lack of clarity can lead to powerlessness.
Is It Time To Stop ‘Bullying’? (7/12/10) Tim Kingsbury I’ve been thinking for a while that the term ‘bullying’ may be becoming less and less useful. We all know it goes on around us, we all know people who have been damaged by it, and the scale of workplace bullying is worrying. To give just one indication of scale, at a recent conference Gill Dix of ACAS said that the ACAS Helpline receives 74,000 calls annually about bullying and harassment.
Yes, No or I'll Think About It (11/24/08) Bill Eddy Whether in a divorce, a workplace dispute, or a conflict with a neighbor, it’s easy to get caught up in defending our own behavior and point of view. This is especially true when we are dealing with a high conflict person.
Bullies At Work (10/14/08) Bill Eddy Workplace bullying is a growing international problem. It is more than a one-time incident. It is a pattern of behavior between a bully and another worker which can demoralize, isolate and trigger illness in the target of the bully.
"B" is for Bully Update: Mom Indicted for MySpace Bullying Leading to Teen's Suicide (5/19/08) Victoria Pynchon I've blogged several times about bullying, both here and over at the IP ADR Blog. We learned from Forbes.com today that federal prosecutors are seeking an indictment against the mom we wrote about here for her alleged role in an online hoax that caused a 13-year old girl to commit suicide. Here's the link with an excerpt below: Indictment sought in MySpace cyberbullying case.LOS ANGELES - Federal prosecutors are seeking an indictment against a Missouri mother for her...
"B" is for Bully: The ABC's of Conflict Resolution (5/05/08) Victoria Pynchon Here’s another familiar character. This is the kid who shook you down for your lunch money on the elementary school playground. The one who taunted you in gym whenever you failed to pass the basketball to the only guy able to sink it. The swaggering bad boy who threw the “dodge” ball in your face and then fell down laughing. But don't be fooled by ribbons and curls. Boys aren't the only bullies in town. There’s no bully quite so deadly as the high school ...
Workplace violence blog committed to making employees safer (2/11/08) Diane J. Levin PART27.com, a web site dedicated to providing resources that help organizations, companies, and agencies create safer workplaces, also publishes Workplace Violence, a blog that delivers news and links to resources for employers and others seeking ways to address and prevent violence at work.
Among the stories covered recently are:
“Bullying bad for business“
“Bullied at work: practice costs productivity, health” and
New European report highlights emerging...
When Mediators Turn a Blind Eye to Bullying (9/18/06) Barb Hastings Bullying isn't allowed in or around school anymore. Yet it is common practice in the legal profession. What is surprising to me is that mediators seem to turn a blind eye to it. They accept it as a part of the process.
The Mediator as Moralist Bully (4/30/05) Robert Benjamin As a presenter, I’d always wondered when I would be found out—maybe this audience would discover that I was living a lie: when I was a child I had been a bully. That’s not all. There are times I could qualify for being ‘abusive,’ certainly ‘passive-aggressive,’ and even that new descriptor that effortlessly rolls off the tongues of so many of my colleagues, the “Narcissistic Personal Disorder.” That fit me too. Would they see it?
Workplace Violence: Paranoid or Prepared? (3/08/02) Kimberly Larsen Workplace Violence costs American employers not only in dollars and cents, but also in a significant loss in productivity. It is estimated that American businesses lose approximately 36 billion dollars per year as a result of workplace violence. This figure includes monetary costs from lost productivity, legal fees, settlement costs and jury verdicts. Out-of-court settlements for lawsuits arising out of workplace violence average $500,000, with jury verdicts averaging about $3 million.
Decreasing Violence Through Conflict Resolution Education In Schools (2/15/01) Jeanne Asherman In an effort to address the fear of parents, “Zero Tolerance
Policies” are being applied in schools in such a way as to penalize minor conflicts. Research has consistently shown conflict resolution training to be a far more effective means of decreasing violence. This
article concludes that schools can not avoid being involved in teaching
children methods of conflict resolution and have a responsibility to
consciously insure that appropriate methods are being taught.
Talking With Kids About Violence (2/13/01) Talking with Kids Research shows that children, especially those between the ages
of 8 and 12, want their parents to talk with them about today's
toughest issues, including violence. Even when they reach adolescence,
they want to have a caring adult in their lives to talk about