Mediation in Today's News

August 2014

Home Share Now wins award for mediation

The American College of Civil Trial Mediators, a professional association, recently gave a cash award to Home Share Now for its efforts in home sharing mediation. The award came in support of applying dispute resolution in the alternative setting of facilitated home sharing. Home Share Now has facilitated the sharing of housing, such as by multigenerational housemates, since 2003. The organization said it views conflict resolution as the most important skill necessary for successful home sharing.

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Bangalore: Mediation a big success

Mediation is catching on in the city with more than 60 per cent of all cases referred to the Bangalore Mediation Centre being resolved out of court. The centre, just off KH (Double) Road, handles about a 100 cases every day, according to mediators who volunteer at the centre. As a free alternative to litigation, mediation centres bring relief to an already burdened legislative system. The rules for mediation were framed by the High Court of Karnataka in 2006 and the centre was set up in 2007. Prashanth Chandra, a mediator for seven years and an advocate

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Mediation of Insurance Coverage Cases

Resolving insurance coverage disputes through mediation requires careful assessment of three unique elements: the insurance policy, the rules applicable to the application of the policy and the cases construing the policy. Evaluative mediation provides the best approach for resolving these disputes. It requires parties, counsel and the mediator to evaluate the strength and weaknesses of coverage issues, and it provides for input from the mediator as to possible outcomes of the case. There are also other issues unique to insurance coverage cases that must be addressed in the mediation process.

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10 Tips for a Successful Mediation

If your company is headed to a mediation, you’re in good company. A recent study of more than 350 Fortune 1000 companies showed that nearly all of them have used mediation in the last three years to resolve a dispute. Compared to other dispute resolution mechanisms, mediation can be attractive for any number of reasons, not the least of which is that you are the master of your own fate and you have the opportunity to resolve matters early on—privately and without the extended costs and risks of litigation.  But successful mediations do not simply happen. Here are 10 tips you can use to increase the likelihood that your mediation is a success.

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Gunmen wound Lebanese religious mediators

Gunmen attacked a delegation of clerics sent to mediate between the Lebanese army and Islamic extremists from neighboring Syria that took over a Lebanese town, wounding a prominent Sunni sheik who then left on Tuesday to be treated at a hospital. Sheik Salem al-Rafei of the Association of Muslim Scholars suffered wounds in the leg during the attack late Monday. The association declined to comment on the results of the mediation but in an apparent gesture of goodwill, militants released three policemen they had been holding captive.

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DirecTV CEO says he's open to mediation to resolve Dodgers TV dispute

Satellite broadcaster DirecTV said it would be open to some sort of mediation to resolve its dispute with Time Warner Cable over carriage of SportsNet LA, the new local TV home for the Dodgers. Speaking to analysts and investors during its second-quarter earnings conference call, DirecTV Chief Executive Mike White said he is "frustrated" with the negotiations with Time Warner Cable, which has distribution rights for the Dodgers-owned channel.  While White's remarks may be seen as cause for optimism for Dodgers fans, he also suggested that the team should be part of any talks. "Without active participation of the Dodgers I'm not sure how you get any resolution to this dispute," White said.

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Mediation Perspectives: The Shia Imami Ismaili Muslims in Dialogue With the World

Conflicts with a religious dimension are increasingly commanding global attention and have become a focal point for those working in the field of dialogue and mediation. While the role of religion in conflict is salient, focusing excessively on this relationship runs the risk of losing track of the unifying capacity of religious institutions and the work that is being done by their members to transcend cultural, religious and political boundaries. Against the backdrop of intensifying unrest between Sunni and Shia Islamic communities in many different regions of the world, it is pertinent to remind ourselves of the many initiatives from within these communities to bridge differences. What can we learn from the Shia Imami Ismaili Muslim community regarding the promotion of peaceful co-existence worldwide?

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The psychology of mediation

studies show that an individual’s satisfaction with a court proceeding, arbitration or mediation depend on whether that person perceives the process as “fair.” Parties are more willing to enter into a settlement, and to comply with its terms, if they credit the process as a fair one. Reaching a negotiated result, and then abiding by the agreed-to terms, therefore, may hinge on the parties’ belief that the mediation has been fairly conducted. When evaluating “fairness,” most people ask themselves whether they had a voice in the process. Surprisingly, the actual result is of secondary importance. What people want is the ability to have substantive input into the ultimate decision.

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Metropolitan Opera Considers Mediation

The Metropolitan Opera has proposed bringing in a mediator to facilitate talks with its unions, a move that could delay a lockout that management had threatened for Friday. Opera officials broached the idea in a negotiation session Wednesday with the American Guild of Musical Artists, which represents singers, dancers and stage managers. Union head Alan Gordon said his group would agree to mediation if the unions representing the orchestra and stagehands were on board.

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Spectrum doctor's Facebook lawsuit: Mediator chosen; hospital responds

A mediator has been chosen for a lawsuit filed against Spectrum Health by an emergency room physician whose position was terminated after she made a comment on Facebook, according to a statement filed in U.S. District Court. Dr. Catherine Puetz filed the lawsuit March 14, saying she was abruptly let go and wrongfully accused of a HIPAA violation after she and other employees made comments online about a photo posted on Facebook. She accuses Spectrum of “defamation, false light invasion of privacy, breach of contract/covenant and tortious interference with business expectancy.” Also named in the suit are Kevin Splaine, the president of Spectrum Health Hospitals, and Jeanne Roode, director of emergency, trauma and neuroscience services.

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Why mediation is a model for problem solving

About eleven years ago, I was experiencing a life transition and thought it would be a great time to connect with the local community dispute resolution program. The exploration brought me to The Dispute Resolution Center in Ann Arbor, where a community of mediators worked together to provide an alternative approach to problem solving instead of going to court. What I found was a rich and engaged community of mediators committed to helping people problem solve and committed to making the DRC a vibrant, viable, and reliable choice for dispute resolution.

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Judge orders sexual abuse victims, Milwaukee archdiocese to mediation in bankruptcy case

A federal judge said Wednesday that she would send the Archdiocese of Milwaukee's bankruptcy case to mediation. Bankruptcy Judge Susan Kelley said she considers mediation the best bet for resolving the hard-fought, three-year-long case. The archdiocese filed for bankruptcy in 2011, saying it would not have the money to pay if it lost lawsuits filed on behalf of victims of clergy sexual abuse. More than 500 abuse victims have since filed claims in bankruptcy court. The mediation will involve attorneys for the archdiocese, sexual abuse victims and others owed money by the archdiocese. A previous attempt at mediation in 2012 failed. Kelley agreed to mediation before hearing arguments over whether the archdiocese should pay attorneys' legal fees now or later.

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“To See Ourselves as Others See Us”: The surprising potential of Online Dispute Resolution

Many of us have been hearing about Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) for years but haven’t quite got round to using it. It sounds like a nice idea when face-to-face mediation isn’t an option through distance and/or cost. And yet I suspect that for most mediators the ‘gold standard’ is being in the same room as our clients. We can see people, hear them, feel the emotional temperature; we can also speak, use our eyes, use our hands; even jump to our feet when things get stuck. A small screen, by contrast, seems flat, miniature and limited. However, if precedent is anything to go by, it would be foolish to bet against the forward march of technology.

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Judge Orders Mediation for SpaceX, US Air Force

A federal judge has asked the U.S. Air Force and Space Exploration Technologies Corp. to try mediation to resolve a lawsuit over the service’s $11 billion order of rockets from SpaceX-rival United Launch Alliance. SpaceX filed the lawsuit April 28, asking the U.S. Court of Federal Claims to void a large portion of the deal, under which the Air Force ordered 36 rocket cores from ULA on a sole-source basis. The U.S. Department of Justice, representing the Air Force, has asked the court to dismiss the case. But Judge Susan Braden on July 24 directed the two sides to explore a third alternative: mediation. Braden asked SpaceX to provide, by Sept. 10, a list of proposed issues for mediation, potential mediators and a timetable. The Air Force will then have until Oct. 14 to determine whether SpaceX’s proposed terms for mediation are acceptable.

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Five mediation secrets can change life

I’ve been a lawyer for almost 30 years and a mediator since 1990. I’ve learned how to help resolve people’s problems, getting them not only what they say they want, but what they really want and aren’t telling me. I have five secrets that have changed my life and those of the people I work and play with. I’ll let you in on these secrets. Use them wisely. They are powerful tools.

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July 2014

Divorcing Parents: 10 Questions to Ask Before Fighting Over the Kids

Divorce attorney Larry Sarezky has created a short film to stop divorcing parents from engaging in high-conflict custody battles for the sake of the kids. I saw the film, Talk to Strangers, and was dramatically impacted by its message. Larry also provides ten questions divorcing parents should ask themselves before fighting over the kids in court. His years of experience have shown him the consequences for the children involved -- effects they'll experience on a life-long basis. Here are Larry's 10 questions, along with his opening comments about high conflict divorce.

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India: Mediation to settle the trouble in family

Over 20,000 cases related to family disputes have been settled in Bangalore with the help of a third party mediator over the last 7 years.  
1. Total no: of cases referred to mediation: 35784
2. Total no: of cases mediated: 27915
3. Total cases not mediated and returned: 5864
4. Total cases mediated and settled: 20534

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Can we change the mediation paradigm from voluntary to mandatory?

I have just returned from an enjoyable but hectic visit to the United States. During my stay, I took some time to read up on the family law situation both in the US and north of the border in Canada. It is always intriguing to see such familiar family law touchstones as legal aid and mediation in a completely different context.

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Afghanistan election commission welcomes UN mediation

Welcoming an agreement between the two top candidates brokered by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and the United Nations, Afghanistan’s election commission hopes to finish an audit of 23,000 polling stations within three weeks. Ahmad Yousuf Nouristani, chairman of the Independent Election Commission, told reporters Sunday that the commission is ready to start auditing all 8 million votes cast in the June 14 presidential runoff as soon as possible. Nouristani said after training auditors, the audit can begin in the presence of representatives from both candidates as well as national and international observers. The Kerry-brokered deal Saturday night for a full ballot audit offers a path out of political crisis for Afghanistan. Both candidates had claimed victory and were talking of setting up competing governments.

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Judge Orders Mediation in US Rep. Sanford Divorce

A South Carolina Family Court judge has ordered U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford and his ex-wife, Jenny, to work with a mediator to resolve a dispute over money for their two youngest sons. The two appeared in court in Charleston on Monday. The issue is trust funds for the couple's two youngest boys. Their divorce agreement four years ago said the couple would try to work together to equalize the amount in the boys' trust funds so it's comparable with what was put in their older two boys' accounts at the time.

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Reality TV Discovers Mediation

Remember when we used to lament the fact that there were no mediation tv shows? Well we had Fairly Legal which was farcically formulaic and often a bit silly. Now we have Untying the Knot, a new reality series on the Bravo network. The show follows New Jersey divorce attorney-mediator Vikki Ziegler as she “mediates” property division issues for divorcing couples. The reason for the quotes? Here’s why:

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UC Davis Strawberry Breeding Program Mediation Continues

The California Strawberry Commission filed a lawsuit against UC Davis in October 2013 regarding its acclaimed strawberry breeding program. The commission expressed concern that the university was planning to end its breeding program. In April 2014, following months of meetings with the strawberry commission, the university filed a motion with the Alameda County Superior Court, asking that the lawsuit be dismissed as meritless. The university has assured the commission and other stakeholders that it is continuing the public breeding program, maintaining duplicate copies of each plant in the breeding program and recruiting for a new breeder with advanced genomic skills to join the program.

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Bloomingdale Big Box Development Gets Green Light As Mediation Reaches Agreement

The outcome of the much anticipated judge-ordered mediation process, following a law suit filed by the Bloomingdale community against Hillsborough County and developer Red Cast Bloomingdale LLC, turned out to be a bitter pill to swallow for residents this month.  The disappointment came in a statement to residents by Coordinated Active Neighborhoods for Development Organization (Can-Do), which has taken the role of representing the community. In joining Plaintiff Fred Brown, Bloomingdale Can-Do and its officers have resolved all claims against Hillsborough County and developer Red Cast Bloomingdale LLC. After several rounds of meetings with representatives from Red Cast Bloomingdale LLC and Hillsborough County, Brown and the officers of Can-Do acknowledge that the project has the potential to enhance the neighborhood and surrounding community. The developer has shown a willingness to cooperate and listen to the community’s concerns.

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Martin County, Jupiter Island officials met for mediation over dredging dispute

Sand is big business in Martin County. However, for people who live in the highly affluent community of Jupiter Island it can make or break their property values. It's also at the center of a debate that has raged for years between the county and the town which could end with a lawsuit. On Wednesday, county and town officials met for mediation. The two sides are at odds over the dredging of the St. Lucie inlet.

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De Mistura Reportedly to Succeed Brahimi as UN Syria Mediator

Veteran United Nations official Staffan de Mistura, a former U.N. special envoy to Afghanistan and Iraq, will replace Lakhdar Brahimi as the international mediator seeking an end to Syria's civil war, diplomats said on Wednesday. U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told reporters later on Wednesday that consultations were still continuing on the appointment and he hoped to make an announcement “very soon.”

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Early mediation: the sooner the better?

Time was, a lawyer looked forward to each new lawsuit as promising & enticing vistas of endless litigation.  More recently, however, the mantra has become "how soon can we resolve this?"  The benefits of mediation; cost effectiveness, certainty of outcome and the parties' ultimate control over the process; are well recognized.  The focus has recently shifted from "whether" to mediate to "when."

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Mediation and Mindfulness

Mindfulness has recently caught the popular imagination as a way to counter the stress of everyday life. Mediation has also caught on, as a way to minimise the suffering (both human and financial) caused by workplace conflict. On the surface, mindfulness and workplace mediation are very different: the former is most often considered a silent, solitary practice aimed at self-development; the latter typically involves a conversation between at least two parties and a mediator, and its aim is business improvement. Nevertheless, by placing these two practices side by side, we find some striking parallels and far-reaching implications as to where responsibility for conflict management lies. Jon Kabat-Zinn – probably the person most associated with the spread of mindfulness in the West – defines it as “the awareness that arises through paying attention on purpose in the present moment without judgement”. I will take each of the elements of his definition in turn.

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Argentina says to meet debt mediator again on Friday

Argentine officials will meet again with a mediator appointed by a U.S. court on Friday to try to resolve its legal battle with hedge funds suing for full repayment of defaulted sovereign bonds, the government said on Tuesday. President Cristina Fernandez's government has until July 30 to reach a deal with the funds in a dispute that has pushed Latin America's No. 3 economy to the brink of its second debt default in 12 years.

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AU: Mediation service hopes to ease pain of divorce

Bitter and costly court battles between warring former spouses could be minimised thanks to a new family mediation service being trialled at Queensland University of Technology health clinics.  Its aim, QUT family dispute Resolution Practitioner Jennifer Felton said, is to minimise the damage caused to children caught between divorcing parents by cutting down on time spent squabbling before a magistrate. She said negotiations before a qualified mediator gave former couples the opportunity to rationally resolve problems arising from their separation, without the added stress of doing it in a courtroom. "Mediation and family dispute resolution is increasingly used in Australia and offers a much more beneficial way of parents making decisions than using the legal system to argue against each other," she said.

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Mediation Forture Cookies?

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Mediator announces GM payments for crash victims

A plan developed by attorney Kenneth Feinberg on behalf of General Motors (GM) to provide compensation for people killed in accidents caused by faulty ignition switches in some of the automaker's vehicles will offer claimants at least $1 million, plus other payouts. Under guidelines for the so-called compensation protocol announced by Feinberg on Monday, families will be offered $1 million for the death of the victim, plus $300,000 for the surviving spouse and $300,000 for each of the victim's surviving dependents. Those payments are intended to cover "non-economic" losses, such as for emotional distress.

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Canada: Undergoing mediation? Both parties may be eligible for family lawyers

Separating couples who choose mediation may now both be eligible for legal aid family lawyers as Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) expands its pilot province-wide. Starting July 3, when one of the mediation clients is financially eligible for a lawyer, the other mediation client may also be eligible, as long as they earn up to a maximum of $50,000. This new service, which began as a pilot in select locations in February 2014, has LAO covering the cost of a family lawyer for up to six hours of support and advice for financially eligible clients participating in mediation. Clients can receive advice about the process before starting a mediation, assistance in preparing for the mediation and legal advice after the mediation to help them understand their rights and obligations under the mediated agreement. The lawyer can also assist with obtaining a court order or binding agreement based on the terms of the mediated agreement.

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New Oregon program allows mediation for medical errors instead of suing

A mediation program spearheaded by Gov. John Kitzhaber went into effect Tuesday, giving patients and their families an option besides suing when medical errors happen. But questions remain over how the mediation program will develop, including whether hospitals, doctors and other providers will take advantage of the program, or candidly discuss errors if they do. The result of a compromise between trial lawyers and the Oregon Medical Association approved in SB 483 last year, the Early Discussion and Resolution program is intended to cut down on lawsuits and boost the reporting of medical errors to help improve health care practices. Any patient or direct family member can use the law to file a notice over an incident in which someone has been seriously injured or died from medical care. The notice triggers what is intended to be a confidential discussion in which a provider or health care facility can even offer an apology or financial settlement. The two sides can use a mediator to come to some sort of settlement. If that is not successful, the patient or their family can sue.

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Hawaii Governor Signs Public Land Valuation Mediation Bill

On Tuesday, Governor Neil Abercrombie signed House Bill 1823 into law. The measure requires mediation in disputes regarding the fair market value or fair market rental of public lands and provides for binding arbitration in the event of unsuccessful mediation. During the ceremony held at the Hilo Yacht Club, the governor said that as the Big Island grows, the question of fair market public land value is a pertinent one, and “not easily subject to appraisals” because “criteria can vary.” The Governor continued: “Its not exactly ho’oponopono, but it certainly is a child of that concept. That we talk things over first, and then if its still in a situation where arbitration comes into the picture, than so be it. This is an excellent opportunity for us to recreate a sense of conversation rather than confrontation.”

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June 2014

Francisco Lorite Receives 2014 Imagen Award Nomination for "Mediation" with Freddy Rodriguez

Award-winning filmmaker Francisco Lorite has received a 2014 “Best Theatrical Short" Imagen Award nomination for his short film entitled “Mediation.” The Imagen Awards are given annually by the Imagen Foundation to recognize and reward the positive portrayal of Latinos in all media, as well as to honor the achievements of Latinos in the entertainment and communications industries. "Mediation" is the first project released by the brand new Film/TV production company entitled Top Rebel Productions - the brainchild of Francisco Lorite, actor Freddy Rodríguez (“Six Feet Under”, "Night Shift”) and veteran producer Bill Winett. The short tells the story of a divorce mediation that spirals completely out of control for a husband (Freddy Rodriguez), his soon-to-be ex-wife (Marley Shelton) and their court-appointed mediator (Lola Anthony).

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Target lawyer suggests mediation for resolving data breach lawsuits

More than 140 lawsuits related to the Target data breach are inching through the courts, but now there's talk of resolving them in a quicker and quieter way, an attorney for Target indicated Wednesday. In a federal courtroom in St. Paul, attorney Wendy Wildung, representing Minneapolis-based Target, told District Judge Paul Magnuson that Target is considering "the possibility of an early case resolution" for the data-breach lawsuits. She mentioned an Aug. 11 mediation meeting. If the mediation path ultimately proves successful, it could short-circuit the need for public trials related to Target's data breach -- and provide a confidential resolution for Target, which has already suffered a huge black eye with the public.

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Mediation: A Different Kind of Conversation

Two weeks ago, I spent four full days in training to become a volunteer mediator with the Community Dispute Resolution Center (“CDRC”). The experience was fascinating and superb, and I look forward to the next steps in my training for certification to begin actual mediation. While I have much to say in praise of both mediation and the process by which CDRC trains its mediators, this column will focus on some of the important differences between mediation and litigation, and the possibilities that those differences offer for approaching human conflict in a more empowering way. 

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Can Iran's Diplomatic Status Change from Meddler to Mediator?

The consistent rhetoric from Washington and its allies has been that Iran meddles in its neighbors’ affairs by sponsoring overseas terrorism –whether it be in supporting Hezbollah, targeting Israelis abroad or trying to stir up turmoil in the Middle East. But this is not a narrative you hear much of these days. Secretary of State John Kerry signaled a shift in attitude earlier this week, recognizing that Iran could play a crucial role in helping to quell Iraq’s violence. However, there are significant hurdles to overcome before Iran’s diplomatic reputation can change from meddler to mediator.

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Shaping the Rule of Law, Trust And Resolution in The Online Justice System

The changes resulting from the rise of the Internet are taking hold, and the legal community has yet to catch up to the way the world is now interacting. Bringing the rule of law online will be an essential part of determining how we shape the future of global normative behavior and present an opportunity to redefine what we believe to be the right way to act, based not only on the multiplicity of laws as they stand, but rather based on a new organic democracy that will define itself in an harmonized way. The ability to negotiate, reach consensus, and resolve disputes online will be an essential set of skills for all who participate.

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Shanghai mediation service offers cure for patient-hospital disputes

Shanghai's introduction of a mediation service to resolve patient-hospital disputes before they lead to lawsuits or even violence seems to be easing strains in the system, city authorities said. Almost 7,000 cases were heard in the first 30 months of the program, 82 percent of them with successful outcomes. In the first quarter of this year alone, mediation offices handled 855 cases, a 20 percent increase from last year, and 517 of them resulted in settlements involving nearly 25 million yuan (US$4 million) in compensation. "Mediation is free and fast, while litigation can be expensive and drawn-out," said Zhang Jie, a lawyer and experienced mediator in Shanghai.

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How Mediation Can Help Resolve a Technology Dispute

It may take all day (and sometimes all night) but more often than not the mediator is successful. This may be because the very fact that parties have agreed to mediate in the first place means a settlement is more likely. It may be because if you sit senior executives in a room for long enough they will want to do a deal just so they can escape. But whatever the reason, mediation works. Talk to any mediator and they will be justifiably proud of their success rate. Mediation is cheaper than litigation, more flexible in terms of the range of outcomes open to the parties to agree and it's confidential. What's not to like?

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Conflict Mediation Through Sport

This week, the world’s attention will refocus from domestic issues to the international stage of the World Cup in Brazil. While domestic Israeli politics never has a dull moment, today we bring you a story about the Italian football superclub “FC Inter Milan” and the social work they recently completed in Israel/Palestine. The initiative is called “Inter Campus”. On the website they write: “Since 1997, Inter Campus has implemented a flexible and long-term social and cooperation programme in 25 foreign countries, assisted by 200 local instructors. The aim of the programme is to use the game of football as an educational tool to restore the right to play to 10,000 needy children.” The program in Israel/Palestine brought together Israeli Jews, Palestinians, and African Refugees to compete, train, and play together.

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Besieged Iraqi forces in Tal-Afar seek tribal mediation to escape ISIS

The Iraqi army, besieged for days in the Iraqi airport of Tal-Afar, are seeking tribal mediation with ISIS to enable them to leave their positions safely, Anadolu news agency said yesterday. According to an officer, the army has been seeking a tribal mediation with ISIS in order to reach a "truce that guarantees them safe departure". He did not mention any details.

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Law Shielding Mediation Communications Doesn't Make Malpractice Claim Unprovable

A malpractice plaintiff who says his lawyer steered him into an inadequate settlement may be able to plead and prove his claim even though he is statutorily prohibited from disclosing the terms of the purportedly inadequate settlement or any communications that occurred during mediation, the Oregon Court of Appeals held June 11 (Alfieri v. Soloman).  A trial judge dismissed the case with prejudice after finding that Oregon's mediation confidentiality statute barred the plaintiff from disclosing three categories of information essential to proving damages: 1) the terms of the underlying settlement; 2) any “mediation communications,” including the lawyer's advice after the mediation conference but before the settlement was signed; and 3) post-signing communications in which the lawyer failed to inform the client that the other party's noncompliance with certain settlement terms called into question the enforceability of the agreement.  The appeals court said that while the first two categories of information were properly struck from the complaint, the post-settlement discussions were not covered by the confidentiality statute.

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Brooklyn judge asked to discard his own mediator

The Brooklyn judge deciding whether to disqualify certain scorers who evaluated proposals to purchase Long Island College Hospital is being asked to discard one of his own mediators.

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Airport board 'can mediate in good faith' on ex-director's discrimination complaint

The director of the Charleston County Aviation Authority said mediation is a possibility in the gender discrimination complaint filed by the former director of the county's three airports. "We can certainly mediate in good faith," said Airports Director Paul Campbell. "We want something that allows us to run the airport in a cost-effective manner." The resolution to the nearly year-old dispute with ex-airports Director Sue Stevens does not have to involve money entirely, Aviation Authority Chairman Andy Savage added. He did not elaborate.

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Court Must Mediate in Cases Involving Children

New Iowa Legislature-mandated mediation guidelines for court cases involving children will take effect next month. If you have a dissolution of marriage or a domestic relations case involving children, you'll be ordered to go through mediation to try and mediate the issues. Previously, mediation didn't happen unless the parties involved in the case did it on their own. There will be a mediator roster provided to the parties and they will choose their own." The mediator will then file a report saying whether it's been successful or not. Statistically, it's been proven that the parties in these cases are happier that they're a part of the outcome as opposed to going to trial.

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New mediation date set for Hope Mills and builders of Hope Mills Lake dam

A mediation date of July 9 was set Monday in a lawsuit filed by the town against the designers and builders of the failed Hope Mills Lake dam.  In a related matter, the judge said he would decide later on whether the town is required to release documents to Crowder Construction, one of the defendants in the case.  Morphis said Crowder wants emails and other communication regarding a settlement the town reached with Mosher Engineering, another of the defendants.  The town filed suit in October 2012 over the $14 million dam, which failed in June 2010. It seeks more than $10 million in repair costs.

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Norwegian Oil Industry Faces Mediation to Avoid Output Halt

Norwegian oil workers and employers will start mediation talks tomorrow to bridge differences and avoid a strike that threatens to halt about 115,000 barrels of oil a day. The mediation deadline is set for midnight tomorrow and involves two unions that broke off wage talks last month over pensions, according to the parties involved. Talks frequently run beyond the deadline. “We naturally hope for a solution,” Sverre Simen Hov, a spokesman for the Norwegian Organization of Managers and Executives, said by phone on June 13. It’s “very difficult” to predict the outcome, he said.

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Mediation on rise in matrimonial cases

The cost of a divorce or separation through mediation is typically 50 percent less and takes about half the time of a traditional court proceeding. Ultimately, 95 percent of such court cases end with a settlement anyway! Mediators discuss the benefits of mediation for many families.

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Mediation speeds Franklin County property-tax challenges

A mediation program designed to handle routine property-value challenges has been so successful that Franklin County officials say it could clear up a backlog of sometimes-years-old complaints by early next year. The program, the first of its kind in the state, allows homeowners to challenge the value that the auditor’s office sets for their property without having to go through the more traditional, formal hearing process before the county’s board of revision. Most of the cases are decided over the phone in a conference call with the property owner, a representative of the auditor’s office and an independent, third-party mediator.

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