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June 2013 - Resolving Commercial Disputes through Mediation

By Howard Gardener, director and solicitor at Phillips.  Howard is nationally accredited as a Commercial/Civil Mediator and is head of Mediation at Town Gate Mediation, the sister business of Phillips Solicitors. 

Commercial mediation is a well established within the UK, which has a strong reputation in this area.  As mediation has become more mainstream in the past 15 years, courts and judges are making efforts to develop the practice and factor it into pre-litigation procedures.

According to figures given by The Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (“CEDR”) in 2012, the size of the civil and commercial mediation market in the UK is in the region of 8,000 cases per year, and has been growing by approximately 15 per cent each year since 2010. 

 ‘Our approach emphasises practical understanding of our clients' business problems and we have experience across every segment of the corporate and financial world.  We specialise in managing complex cases involving multiple claims and parties. We also aim to develop compliance initiatives and other techniques to help our clients reduce litigation risk.' 

'In my role as a mediator, I act as an impartial third party, attempting to make sure both points of view are heard and understood.  It is difficult to say how many sessions are needed in commercial disputes and often the mediation goes on until a resolution is found.'

'The subject matter and the amount of information needed to help clients make an informed decision can be vastly different from one case to another; however as mediator, I will always be determined to bring things to resolution as soon as possible and I will also try to ensure that a settlement is reasonable for both parties and that a satisfactory conclusion is reached.'* 

'Evidence shows that business conflicts which are taken to mediation are not only resolved faster, but also allow for a better relationship between the two parties afterwards.'

If you would like more information on the Commercial Mediation services offered by Town Gate Mediation, contact 01256 854627 or email

*The above extract is taken from an article written by Howard Gardener that appears in the latest issue of Acquisition International magazine.