“A good settlement is better than a good lawsuit.”

- Abraham Lincoln

What Is Mediation?

Conflicts are a fact of life. But they do not need to remain a problem.

Thanks to glossy portrayals in the media and its long history in the judicial system, the most commonly understood form of conflict resolution is litigation. This is followed closely by arbitration after the signing of the New York Convention on Arbitration in 1958. 

However, both litigation and arbitration tend to be very expensive, time-consuming and stressful for the parties. Above all, the outcome is not within the parties’ control.

And this is where mediation and its plethora of advantages emerge on the global stage.

Mediation is a dispute resolution mechanism which utilizes the skills of a neutral facilitator (the Mediator) whose main purpose is to help parties navigate the conflict resolution process effectively to the point where a settlement becomes possible.

The parties’ retain control over the outcome at all times and when conducted properly by a trained and accredited mediator, there is a higher chance of preserving relationships at the end of the session.

In recent decades there has been increasing universal recognition that disputants should explore non-adjudicatory processes such as mediation before turning to litigation or arbitration. With reference to the global survey done by the Global Pound Conference, the Working Committee identified three main advantages in using mediation: 

Cheaper and Faster

Commercial mediation is faster and cheaper than traditional dispute resolution mechanisms. Mediation would also reduce the litigation case load of courts.

An Effective Alternative

Mediation strengthens the dispute resolution eco-system by providing another avenue for disputes.

Preserves Business Relationships

Mediation is non-adversarial. It preserves business relationships and encourages parties to explore sustainable and mutually beneficial solutions thus building trust in the legal system.

With the promulgation of the Singapore Convention on the Enforceability of Mediated Settlements (“the Singapore Convention”) in 2019, we anticipate an escalating demand among for mediation among users for business-related conflicts. Mediation is able to combine the advantage of lower costs, faster turnaround times, and party control to provide a pathway towards a resolution. 

Parties may still choose arbitration or litigation as a second step towards resolution in the event of an unsuccessful mediation by way of a tiered dispute resolution clause in their contracts. But given the consistently high percentages for settlements as a result of mediation, parties are more likely to walk away from a mediation without a further need to pursue other options. 

If you think Mediation is right for you, we welcome you to find out more here.

As East Malaysia’s first full-fledged dispute resolution and mediation consulting firm, AMC aims to provide world-class conflict management consulting services to clients in the region and beyond. Our professional mediators are trained and accredited in dispute resolution and negotiation.

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© 2018-2022 Asia Mediation Centre & Concordia DRC Sdn Bhd (1338948-X). All Rights Reserved.
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