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26 January 2016

Mediation - assisted negotiation - is now an accepted alternative to Litigation and in a new initiative, England’s Cathedrals are getting behind this process for resolving business conflicts. Having a suitable neutral venue for mediation can be vital to its prospects of success and, according to a specialist commercial litigator at Hewitsons solicitors (England), buildings in Cathedral precincts can provide ideal neutral, cost effective and convenient mediation venues for organisations in conflict with each other.[caption id="attachment_1484" align="alignnone" width="132"] Dominic Hopkins[/caption]Dominic Hopkins, partner and head of dispute resolution and litigation at Hewitsons and a Trustee at Peterborough Cathedral, has been instrumental in the development of a new scheme (Mediation at the Cathedral) that will provide neutral Cathedral building venues to those arranging mediations in commercial cases. The first ‘Mediation at the Cathedral’ venue is the Almoner’s Hall at Peterborough Cathedral. With the Hall now taking bookings, and with the support of the Association of English Cathedrals, plans are also afoot for the establishment of a national network of similar mediation venues up and down the country.[caption id="attachment_3110" align="alignleft" width="150"] Peterborough Cathedral[/caption]Hopkins comments: “Recent changes in Civil Justice procedures and rules on litigation costs are designed to encourage parties towards mediation or one of the other Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) procedures at an early stage of a case.  Whilst mediation won’t be appropriate for every dispute, it often is, and can save substantial costs and time and achieve a very positive outcome in many cases. Mediation is a tried and tested tool in the toolbox of the commercial litigator, but finding somewhere suitable for the occasion, and acceptable to both parties, can be a frustratingly time consuming process. There are many ‘must haves’ to consider, such as convenience of location, price, accessibility, adequate technology and flexibility.”Click here for further details.

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