From time to time I am asked what tips I have for people thinking about choosing a mediator or someone to help them negotiate a deal.  The following list isn’t exhaustive, just some of the main things it is useful to be aware of and consider before choosing who to assist you in what can be a time of need.

  • Choose your mediator carefully!  Make sure they have recognised accreditation, are insured and have the sort of experience you need - I am insured with Towergate Insurance and can provide a copy of my policy upon request

  • Have all the documents you need - there is no point trying to ambush the other side, and no fun being ambushed - share whatever you can and try to have a jointly agreed mediation bundle

  • Make sure your representatives have authority to settle on the day - there is nothing more frustrating than reaching agreement only to find a party does not have authority to settle.  The mediator should ask you to confirm this on the day

  • Don't mediate too early but mediate as early as you can - formulate your arguments first, don't be left not knowing answers or not knowing how to respond to negotiations on the day

  • Make sure any third party help is on hand.  Try and have insurers at the mediation if required, and have accountants or other experts ready at the end of a phone line.  At the very least, make sure they are aware that you are in a mediation and may be required and may need to access documents to assist

Founder of Gregory Hunt Mediation providing Ombudsman Services and Commercial Mediation.