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Hatch Brenner Solicitors complete a Mediation via video conference technology


Author: Mark Fitch


Hatch Brenner Solicitors complete a Mediation via video conference technology

Hatch Brenner Solicitors complete a Mediation via video conference technology

Civil Mediation Council accredited Mediator, Mark Fitch, has completed his first Mediation entirely via video conference technology.

Resolved within a day, the Mediation successfully settled an inheritance claim for a significant-sized estate.

Hatch Brenner Solicitors Partner and Mediator Mark Fitch commented: “Given the ongoing social distancing requirements, we have all had to adapt to new ways of working. As in many Mediations, there were multiple parties who needed to be involved. Each individual was logged into the Mediation separately via their own computers in separate locations. From my office desk on Theatre Street in Norwich, I was able to utilise the video conference ‘waiting room’ and ‘break-out room’ features to manage the Mediation – holding the participants on separate lines or separate virtual rooms as needed. The breakout room feature in particular allowed each party to have their own separate virtual space to discuss matters both with myself virtually present, or amongst themselves confidentially. Despite myself being initially nervous should technology let us down, everything went very smoothly. Thank you to the guidance from the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution which proved very useful.

“I believe that Mediation has the edge on other negotiation options, as nothing which is said in one room goes across to the other room unless I am given express permission to do so by the parties involved. This allows the individuals to be completely honest about the strengths and weaknesses of the matter, and I am able to guide them towards a settlement. This advantage remained even via video technology thanks to the breakout room feature. I was genuinely surprised and pleased that we did not loose a great deal of personal interaction. Using video technology is never going to be the same as conducting a Mediation face to face, but it was good enough to realise where the individuals involved were coming from, and to gauge their feelings and emotions in a way that is not possible simply over the phone.

“We expect to see many more Mediations via video call technology in the coming weeks and months. As well as allowing disputes to be resolved during these post-covid times, they also provide an efficient, cost effective and environmentally friendly alternative.”

Mark Fitch has extensive experience as a Mediator, having qualified in 2005 and having completed over 75 Mediations covering property, commercial, contested probate and employment claims. He was recently recommended as a leading Mediator in the Legal 500 UK 2021 edition:

“Mark Fitch at Hatch Brenner LLP is ‘an excellent mediator who quickly understands the obvious points of conflict and aims to find common ground to settle as soon as possible’.”

If you would like to discuss using Mediation to resolve a dispute, please contact Mark Fitch via markfitch@hatchbrenner.co.uk or call 01603 660 811. We offer a fixed fee Mediation at £750 - £1,000 plus VAT per party. Our fixed fee workplace Mediation is £850 plus Vat per party.

If you would like further information about any service, call us on 01603 214220