What is an agreement to mediate?
The mediator will generally provide an 'Agreement to Mediate' to the parties engaging in mediation for signing during the pre-mediation meeting when the mediator meets each participant individually.
The agreement is a vital document that sets out the terms and conditions under which mediation will proceed. Mediators will use slightly different agreements to mediate, depending upon their requirements and how they operate.
The agreement covers confidentiality, obligations of the parties and the mediator, fees, the role of the mediator and a complaints mechanism.
Adelaide Workplace Mediation advises the parties that we require an agreement to be signed. Rarely does anyone object. We will generally send them a copy when confirming their joint session and ask them to review it and see if they have questions or concerns.
At the joint mediation session, I summarise the Agreement To Mediate to confirm understanding. I will also again remind clients of the obligations regarding confidentiality and its limits.
The agreement offers assurance to the parties involved. Having a written commitment to confidentiality helps ensure compliance and the parties' breaching the trust essential to successful mediation.
There are many reasons why signing an Agreement To Mediate makes sense. Most importantly, you are protected through the process and clear on what is expected of everyone involved.