Under most construction contracts, the contractor takes on the ground conditions risk. However, a recent case has demonstrated that the risk can fall on the employer.
Our experienced mediation solicitors can help you reach a workable outcome and avoid the need for costly and lengthy court proceedings.
The litigation landscape has changed over the last decade, and although mediation is not technically compulsory, the court civil-procedure rules and the judiciary strongly encourage parties to seek to settle their disputes through alternative means, such as mediation, at an early stage.
Mediation is a very effective means of resolving disputes: it has a success rate in reaching a binding settlement of around 75-80%. As such, we recommend exploring mediation because as well as saving money, it avoids the disruption of contested court proceedings, as well as potential damage to an organisation’s reputation. In fact, without trying mediation, you may subsequently be criticised by the judge, should your case go to court.
Our mediation services
We guide our clients and provide experienced and insightful representation throughout the process of mediation. As part of our deep understanding of the sectors that we serve, we know how damaging internal and external disputes can be in distracting our clients from their key purposes. We have helped our clients to devise solutions in seemingly impossible situations, and we use the strength and depth of our health and social care sector knowledge to achieve this. Mediation saves management time and money: it is a cost-effective and efficient means to resolve disputes.
We help clients facing serious disputes and manage them in a planned way from the outset. We can assist in finding alternative and creative solutions to disputes. Through mediation we can help solve disputes including the following:
- public procurement disputes;
- workplace issues to address dysfunctional teams, relationship/performance capability issues, and any situation within a health or social care provider that is impacting on effectiveness;
- disputes between a health or social care provider and its tenants/customers;
- serious disputes that disrupt an organisation and that may have reputational consequences/risks;
- difficulties with suppliers, contractors and other parties; and
- property disputes.
We can also provide training in the correct procedures to implement to be best placed to manage problems when they arise. This helps keep your organisation on track, and even allows it to benefit from the lessons that flow from managing disputes.
Outcomes we have achieved when representing our clients in mediation include:
- resolving a dispute for around 15% of the likely costs of continuing the case to trial; and
- resolving a dispute, on behalf of a defendant party, on the basis of our client only paying around 13% of the sum claimed.
Andrew is a Partner in our construction and public procurement team operating within the local government, care and social housing sectors. He is a specialist in helping clients to manage construction
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