On 15 May 2012 the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (“CEDR”) published its Fifth Mediation Audit, a survey of commercial mediator attitudes and experience.
The survey was open to all mediators in the United Kingdom and was completed by 238 mediators. Some of the key findings are as follows:
- As a result of the survey CEDR was able to estimate that some 8,000 cases or so per annum are being referred to mediation. This is about a 15% year on year increase from CEDR’s 2010 Audit.
- The market continues to be dominated by a select few mediators with just over 100 individuals being involved in around 85% of non-scheme commercial cases.
- 39% characterised themselves as “full-time” mediators, an increase from 37% in the 2010 Audit.
- 62% are legally qualified, an increase of 2% from the 2010 Audit.
- The average fees for a less experienced mediator for a one-day mediation have increased from around £1,390 in 2010 to £1,517. For experienced mediators the average fees for a one-day mediation have increased from £3,450 to £4,279.
- The average fees masked a wide range of fees. Just under 70% of respondents indicated average earning for a one-day mediation of up to £2,500.
- The key factor identified by both mediators and lawyers in determining why an individual secured a mediation appointment was professional reputation – experience/status. For lawyers fee levels was the next most important factor followed by availability. Mediators identified availability as the second most important factor followed by professional background/qualifications.
- Settlement statistics were largely unchanged from 2010 with mediators reporting 70% settlement rates on the day of the mediation with 20% settling shortly thereafter. (In 2010 the figures were 75% and 14% suggesting a slight move away from settlement on the day).
- Mediators spend on average 16.8 hours on a typical mediation with more experienced mediators spending less time in preparation and post-mediation follow up.
- 66% of the mediators surveyed favoured the civil justice system taking a more directive approach towards the promotion of mediation with 10% supporting a fully mandatory system (an increase from 3% in 2010).
- 61.7% of mediators questioned and 73% of the lawyers who responded favoured a single regulatory body for setting and monitoring professional standard of commercial mediators.
- CEDR also combined the results with statistics from its own workload to estimate that the value of cases mediated each year (excluding mega-cases) is approximately £7.5 billion – an increase from £5.1 billion in 2010.
- Perhaps of most interest to businesses – CEDR estimated that by resolving cases earlier through mediation mediators have saved businesses around £2billion a year in wasted management time, damaged relationships, lost productivity and legal fees.
Consistent with our policy when giving comment and advice on a non-specific basis, we cannot assume legal responsibility for the accuracy of any particular statement. In the case of specific problems we recommend that professional advice be sought.