7th January 2016

Mediation Messenger


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A reminder for anyone hoping to stand for election to the Board of the Civil Mediation Council that nominations must be with the Registrar by 5.00pm tomorrow, Friday 8th January.

If you are intending to stand for election but have not yet submitted your nomination then please advise the Registrar now via email at registrar@civilmediation.org.


Read the full Notice of Elections to the Board

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Call for Judges

The UK Mediation Competition for Law Schools 2016

The UK Mediation Competition for Law Schools 2016 will be hosted by the University of Central Lancashire on Friday 29th and Saturday 30th January 2016. 


The organisers are looking for judges. In the past CMC members have contributed their valuable time and once again we are asking for mediators to come forward to act as competition judges.


If you are interested and would like to assist, please contact Orla McAllister at the University of Central Lancashire on OMcAllister1@uclan.ac.uk and/or Emma Mcandry on ERMcandry@uclan.ac.uk

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UK Mediation Journal Issue 2

Produced by Hannah Randolph of Iconic Media Solutions, the second issue of this excellent Mediation Journal is now available to all on the below link:

UK Mediation Journal Issue 2

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Do you comply with the ADR DIRECTIVE?  A Reminder

All Businesses in UK must offer consumers an independent ADR provider after 1 October 2015


Businesses in the B2C sector must provide access to an external ADR provider to deal with any contractual disputes with consumers from 1 October 2015.  Details of the scheme must be easily accessible to the consumer.  This represents a sea change in ADR in the UK- even though use of ADR is not compulsory, providing information to consumers about ADR options is- with fines possible for offenders.  




In July 2013 the EU issued a Directive which applies to UK businesses – where there is a contractual dispute between a consumer and a business, the business must ensure ADR requirements are met, including:


•independent/external ADR must be available for a nominal fee or free of charge to the consumer,

•within three weeks of receiving the papers the ADR provider must state if it cannot deal with the papers,

•the ADR process must be completed within 90 days; and

•consumers must be able to submit their complaint online and by post.  It is hoped that ODR will be boosted by this use.


The idea is to ensure that ADR  provided by a certified ADR body is available for any dispute between a consumer and a business. All relevant businesses which did not have an existing external ADR scheme in place should have made arrangements.  An in house complaints service does not meet the requirements.  ADR providers are being certified by competent authorities such as the Chartered Institute of Trading Standards and a list will be maintained by the Citizens Advice Bureau, for the benefit of consumers. 


ADR need not mean mediation in this context but the Civil Mediation Council believes that mediation is an appropriate choice.  It is an independent and voluntary process which does not seek to impose a solution on the parties.


The Civil Mediation Council has a list of Registered Mediation providers and mediators, some of whom are certified by Trading Standards to provide this service to consumers and businesses.  We recommend the use of mediation to resolve these disputes.


Information Requirements


By October 2015 businesses must be compliant with the information requirements of the ADR Directive.   The UK Regulations impose obligations on businesses/traders to provide certain information to consumers.  Under Regulation 19(1), where a trader is required to use ADR services as a condition of membership of a trade association or is obliged to use a certain body by statute then the name and address of the ADR entity must be available on the trader’s website and in the trader’s general terms and conditions.


In addition, for those businesses which do not fall into that category, Regulation 19(2) stipulates that, where a consumer has exhausted an internal complaints handling system in relation to a dispute relating to the sales or service contract, the trader must, on a “durable medium”: inform the consumer that the trader cannot settle the dispute; provide the consumer with the name and address of a certified ADR entity, should the consumer want to use ADR; and tell the consumer whether the trader is obliged, or prepared, to submit to an ADR process with that entity.  


So, providing the information is obligatory but actually using ADR is voluntary.


Online Dispute Resolution Platform


All businesses selling goods or services online need to provide a link to the Online Dispute Resolution (“ODR”) platform on their website, by 15th February 2016.  This is in the process of development.




Part 5 of the first set of implementing regulations amends the Enterprise Act to include offences under ADR. The penalty for non-compliance would be an action in the civil court which could lead to a fine. The Consumer Rights Act extends the range of penalties that an enforcer such as Trading Standards can seek in the civil courts for breaches of the Enterprise Act. From 1 October enforcers are able to seek a range of penalties aimed at giving consumers redress, giving consumers more information on the business that has broken the law and/or measures to reduce the chances of the business re-offending.


What do you need to do?


1.Review your arrangements and consider which certified ADR Provider you will put forward in the event of a dispute. This needs to apply for sales/services offline and online.


2.If you already have an ADR provider as part of a trade association, or as a statutory obligation, make sure that your terms and conditions of business and website comply with the Regulations – again online and offline.

3.if you are a mediator or a provider- check your Registration with the CMC is up to date and renewed for 2016. And check out approval from Trading Standards if you want to take on consumer disputes under the Directive.


For questions contact petercauston@btinternet.com  or if you are a CMC member, join the CMC LinkedIn group to comment.

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Mediators' New Breakfast Club

Time: 8.30 for 9.00am

Date: 13th January 2016

Venue: The Punch Tavern, 99 Fleet Street, London

Speaker: Jay Welsh, Executive Vice President and General Counsel, JAMS

Topic: Messages from the market: what users want from mediation and where we'll be 5 years from now

Cost: £5 to cover the cost of refreshments

To book please email Dave Owen on dwo@pengaron.co.uk


Mediation and RP in Schools & Universities Mediation Group - Inaugural meeting

Organiser: Dave Owen

Time: 8.30 for 9.00am

Date: 20th January 2016

Venue: The Punch Tavern, 99 Fleet Street, London

Topic: Is "embedding" mediation in schools and universities the way forward to a better understanding of mediation in the whole of society?

Cost: £5 to cover the cost of refreshments

To book please email Dave Owen on dwo@pengaron.co.uk


Employment & Workplace Mediation Group - inaugural meeting

Organiser: Dave Owen

Time: 8.30 for 9.00am

Date: 27th January 2016

Venue: The Punch Tavern, 99 Fleet Street, London

Topic: The state of employment and workplace mediation today

Cost: £5 to cover the cost of refreshments

To book please email Dave Owen on dwo@pengaron.co.uk

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The events listed in this newsletter and on the website are not organised by the CMC. The information about such events has been provided to the CMC by third parties and the CMC has not checked and has no responsibility for its accuracy. The CMC has not investigated the merits of the events listed or their providers and inclusion of an event is not to be taken as any recommendation or endorsement on the part of the CMC.

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