Alternative Dispute Resolution

Mediation After Hours

Evenings, Weekends….Whatever it Takes to Settle Your Case at Mediation.

Who says that mediations should only take place on Mondays to Fridays from 10:00 am – 5:00 pm ? This is not Court. This is Alternative Dispute Resolution !

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“No, and it doesn’t depend!” – The Riveting Conclusion to ‘Should Mediators Work on Contingency?’

September 2018  – 5 minute read

Welcome to the riveting conclusion of last week’s post, entitled Should Mediators Work on Contingency?  I appreciate the ‘negative’ response it generated (as in, “no, they should not work on contingency”). There should be no surprise then that, unlike the lawyer-side of my brain that often answers tough legal questions with “well, it depends”, the mediator-side is clear and unequivocal on the issue of whether mediators should charge contingency fees: “No, and it doesn’t depend (on anything, anyone, or any result)!”.

5 reasons mediators should not charge contingency fees

As mentioned previously, if ADRIC’s prohibition on mediator contingency fees is not enough to convince you that non-member mediators should follow suit, I’m prepared to try to convince you. Although I am not aware of the precise reasons why ADRIC chose to ban contingency fees, I suspect the drafters of the Code were mindful of several of the following arguments against mediator contingency fees (particularly the first two):

Reason 1: Mediators are supposed to be neutral and impartial. However, if you make the mediator’s fee – or part of that fee – dependent on achieving a settlement (or certain terms of settlement) then neutrality can be compromised since the mediation outcome affects the mediators’ ability to get paid. As Cyndi Lauper sang, Read more →

Should Mediators Work on Contingency ?

August, 2018 – 5 minute read

Recently, someone asked me if mediators ever work on contingency. The question took me by surprise. To me, the answer seemed obvious, and so I replied: “No, of course not”. As a mediator, I have never charged a contingency fee, nor do I know any mediators where I practise (Ontario, Canada) who do so. Frankly, I don’t believe the thought had ever crossed my mind. However, as a lawyer (I am a lawyer and a mediator – just not for the same dispute), I will enter into contingency fee arrangements for legal services with clients from time-to-time, and for certain types of matters.

Nevertheless, I was curious about my instant aversion to charging contingency fees as a mediator, and I thought that the person who raised the issue deserved a fulsome answer.

In this post (and its conclusion next week), I will address the following questions: 1. Are mediators in Ontario and other parts of Canada permitted to charge contingency fees? 2. If so, are contingency fees a good idea?

What are contingency fees? Read more →