Mediator needs to assess the clients suitability for mediation or counselling

Mediator needs to assess the clients suitability for

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negotiation of practical disputes less effect. Mediator needs to assess the clients’ suitability for mediation or counselling/ therapy. - Model of co-mediation team combining legal and social work/counselling background is useful and provides a convenient structure to by-pass some of the difficulties of choosing between mediation or counselling as two potentially beneficial forms of skilled help. F. Mediation and other Dispute Resolution Options Disputes can be dealt with at three levels (Boulle, 1996, Chapter 3): a) The power level : parties in dispute engage in a contest of strength, through political process, armed conflict or industrial action. Party with low resources will normally display power in a more destructive way. E.g. terrorists activities. b) The rights level : parties resolve disputes through the process of law or other authorities figure e.g. parent. The decision will be in accordance with the law or the prevailing social standards. E.g. abortion, land rights, human rights issues. c) The interest level : parties attempt to negotiate and settle dispute by addressing the interests of the parties. Rights and power may not be of major importance in negotiation. E.g. divorce mediation Indicators of suitability for mediation: a) when conflict between the parties is moderate e.g. couples’ hostility need to be contained in order to be constructive in discussion and decision-making b) both parties are committed to achieving a negotiated settlement including their respective lawyers e.g. undermining of process by extended family c) there is a continuing relationship between the parties e.g. couple with children d) there is a rough equality of bargaining power between the disputing parties e.g. lack of financial information or intimidation to settle when there is disparity of power between couple e) the parties have the capacity and abilities to negotiate e.g. to make informed decision need to be of 7
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sound mind f) there is more than a single issue in dispute and the issues are sufficiently tangible for trade-offs etc. e.g. in most family cases, there are multiple issues g) there are adequate resources e.g. funds, time and information h) there are no clear legal principles or other standards to guide the parties’ decision-making e.g. equitable division of property in matrimonial cases i) the parties can accept that the process is private and the outcome is confidential e.g. celebrities in a matrimonial dispute j) there is some external encouragement for the parties to settle in mediation e.g. pilot scheme in family court Indicators of non-suitability: a) there are broad matters of policy at stake affecting many people or the whole society e.g. human rights b) the dispute involves a pure legal question e.g. interpretation of a statute or contract c) the parties have ulterior motives for using mediation e.g. getting the housing tenancy d) the use of mediation could involve the risk of personal danger for one or more parties e.g. child abuse or family violence e) the dispute cannot be resolved without making complicated findings of fact e.g. party’s liability for
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