Gary Naftel BSc(Hons) MCIArb MRICS
ADR Group Accredited Mediator
Q: What Is Mediation?
Unfortunately there are sometimes disputes between two parties involved on a building project. Mediation is an effective means of resolving disputes.
Litigation or arbitation looks at the law, reviewing evidence, legal standings and precedence and will rule in favour of one side. It will not usually resolve a dispute, but will tend to result in the ‘losing’ party being liquidated or made bankrupt.
A skilled mediator, on the other hand will look at the dispute structure, asking why the dispute started in the first place. The aim is to arrive at a solution that will prevent the same dispute arising again. Provided the parties are willing, mediation will save you money, paperwork and time, and no lawyers’ fees are required.
Q: How Long Does It Take?
Mediation might take one hour or a number of days. We will attempt to resolve differences quickly and cheaply in the first instance and only escalate if need be.
‘In his opening statement, a home owner claimed their builder owed him £25,000 for works yet to be completed but already paid. In his reply, the builder gave an opening statement saying he agreed with the home owner. I thought it was going to be the shortest mediation on record… In the end it took four hours’ discussing the finer points of how the builder was either going to pay back the money or complete further work. It was more complicated than I had anticipated, but our dispute structure was the tool required to resolve their differences’. – Gary Naftel