Conciliation and mediation

Opting for conciliation or mediation rather than arbitration makes it possible to save both time and money, as both conciliation and mediation enable the opposing parties to resolve their differences or clear up misunderstandings and underlying disagreements instead of devoting resources to trying to convince an arbitration tribunal of the correctness of their claims through the exchange of pleadings, tribunal hearings, etc.

Conciliation should be used if the parties want a conciliator with technical expertise to conciliate between the parties and, on request, present a proposal for settlement. The conciliator will typically have experience from working for the Arbitration Board as a technical arbitrator, a specialist expert or an expert appraiser.

Mediation should be chosen if the parties want an independent and impartial negotiator who does not provide legal or technical advice and does not present any proposals for settlement. Through the mediation procedures the parties receive help in coming up with the best solution themselves. The mediator will always have good knowledge of the industry in question, and only mediators who have received special mediator training are used.

The parties may challenge the appointment of a conciliator or mediator within three days of the appointment. Generally, the parties are requested to finalise the conciliation or mediation procedure within fifteen days following the date of appointment. It is up to the parties to decide whether they wish the assistance of an adviser, for example a lawyer.

In the event of a successful outcome, an agreement is drafted and signed by the parties. If the outcome is not successful, it will be necessary to resolve the dispute in some other way, which will typically be in the form of an arbitration case. The parties are likely to find that the preceding conciliation or mediation has reduced the areas of disagreement and has reduced the scale of the case.

The Arbitration Board has rules for both conciliation and mediation. The rules of procedure are the same, but there are great differences in the roles of conciliators and mediators.

Conciliation and mediation rules

The conciliation and mediation rules were first issued in 2004 and revised in 2015. The cases are referred to as Q-cases and P-cases respectively.

The Arbitration Board has prepared a proposal for a clause on the use of conciliation, mediation or anticipatory dispute resolution, which can be inserted into new agreements and contracts or be used as a schedule to already signed agreements or contracts if desirable.

Consiliation and mediation

When is conciliation and mediation used?

A clear prerequisite for conciliation and mediation is that the parties agree on such a dispute resolution approach, either because it was agreed in advance or because they agreed upon it after the dispute arose. Conciliation and mediation can be used in cases of all sizes with few or many parties involved.

The rules were introduced in 2004. The success rate for conciliation is relatively high, as the parties have managed to resolve their dispute in the vast majority of cases. To date, mediation has only been used to a very limited extent.