Mediation v Litigation

  • Mediation is a more comfortable and convenient environment than litigation for disputing parties
  • Mediation offers greater flexibility in scheduling than litigation
  • Mediation is more cost effective than litigation
  • Mediation is much less expensive. It is important to realize that mediation does not lessen the workload. It takes the workload that your attorney and the court would be handling and shifts much of that work to you. A mediator’s role in this is to help you handle this workload
  • Mediation can offer a productive alternative for couples going through a divorce. By avoiding the courts couples may avoid unnecessary stress, costs and fighting. Divorces are never easy, but with the help of a mediator it may help alleviate some of the strain
  • While not mandatory, when disputes come before a Judge they are often referred to mediation prior to any court ruling.
  • Mediation provides personalised results suiting all parties. In family and separating couple mediation, it allows you to be creative and find a result that works for you and your family. The courts try hard to give everybody a fair result, but with the limited time they have they cannot understand your family as well as you. Your day to day knowledge of the people and relationships that make up your family allow you to find creative solutions that take into account your families specific needs.
  • Along with numerous benefits mediation does have one particular challenge. Managing conversations about difficult issues between two people who probably do not like each other very much at the moment can be challenging. This is part of what a mediator brings to the table. The mediator will direct discussions, in a came respectful manner. The mediator will limit fighting by controlling blame, accusations and insults and make sure both parties are heard and stay focused on the issues. These are not always easy things and require many judgment calls on the part of the mediator, but it should be little more than a bump in the road as long as both parties are motivated to reach a settlement.

Mediation is currently unregulated in Ireland – anyone may call themselves a mediator and seek mediation work. However, the Mediators’ Institute of Ireland (MII), a member organisation with over seven hundred accredited mediator members, is an accrediting body for mediators. The MII requires MII-approved mediators to have completed a recognised mediation training programme, to have successfully completed an approved, skills-based assessment, to engage in annual continual professional development in mediation, and to hold appropriate professional indemnity insurance reflecting the scale of their practice.

MII-approved mediators are bound by the MII Code of Ethics and Practice. The MII provides a public database on its website ( which lists MII-approved mediators who are available for private work. I am a certified member of the Mediators Institute of Ireland and I hold a masters (MSSc) degree in mediation through Queens University Belfast.



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