13 June 2000
CEDR figures show rapid mediation growth
New statistics from CEDR (the Centre for Dispute Resolution) reveal a 141 per cent increase in the number of commercial disputes mediated by the organisation in the year April 1999 to March 2000, indicating that the use of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) since the implementation of the Woolf reforms is continuing to grow at a rapid rate.
CEDR, the UK's largest commercial mediation provider, arranged 462 commercial mediations in the first year after the implementation of Lord Woolf's reforms to the Civil Procedure Rules (CPR), which place ADR in the mainstream of the civil justice system and empower judges to direct cases to mediation.
19 per cent of cases were referred by judges (compared with eight per cent in the previous year) and more than three-quarters of these were in the last six-months of the year, suggesting it has taken time for judges to get to grips with their new case management powers. However, court referrals account for only 38 per cent of the 141 per cent increase.
Professor Karl Mackie, Chief Executive of CEDR, said: "The rapid rise of mediation is continuing to gain momentum. Court referrals have added to the increase but more importantly we are witnessing a real change in culture. We have always believed that once people experience the benefits of mediation they will use the process again, and this is clearly happening."
For the first time in CEDR's ten-year history the majority of mediations are being referred from outside London (54 per cent). However, London is still the preferred venue, with 57 per cent of cases mediated in the capital.
Bill Marsh, CEDR's Director of ADR Services, said: "CEDR has had a phenomenal year and we have more than doubled our case management team to ensure that CEDR's high standards are rigorously maintained. Over 80 per cent of cases reach settlement during the mediation or shortly after."
Commercial contract disputes account for 31 per cent of cases, compared to 15 per cent last year, reflecting the increased use of ADR clauses in contracts. Professional negligence and construction / engineering / property cases both account for 17 per cent.
The largest single industry sector using mediation is construction (12 per cent) followed by banking and finance (eight per cent), law firms (seven per cent), manufacturers (seven per cent), IT & telecommunications (six per cent), insurers and re-insurers (five per cent) and shipping (three per cent).
Anthony Monaghan, CEDR's Senior Case Manager, said: "We have retained our breadth of work from multi-million pound to low value disputes, commercial to personal injury, private and public sector, court referred and voluntary."
Notes to Editors:
CEDR (the Centre for Dispute Resolution) is internationally recognised as providing expert third party conflict management and unparalleled mediator training.
CEDR is a non-profit organisation and its mission is to encourage cost effective dispute prevention and dispute resolution in commercial and public sector disputes and in civil litigation. CEDR operates in the UK and internationally and has been instrumental in helping to bring ADR into the heart of business practice and into the judicial system.
CEDR has managed over 3,000 mediation referrals covering every industry sector and a wide-ranging cross section of disputes and case values ranging from less than £5,000 to £1bn with an average settlement rate of over 80 per cent.
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