Maybe because it is unlikely to be cost-effective or quick enough. Or where a client is anxious to keep a dispute private or not to jeopardise business.
1 Shareholder disputes: Take a shareholder dispute, for instance. Unless the termination provisions in the shareholder agreement are crystal clear, the business will probably suffer whoever wins a legal battle. However, if you mediate, you can usually clarify whether the relationship is salvageable (and what needs to be done to get it back on track) and if it isn’t, use the mediation to work out the best way of divorcing safely and inexpensively without destroying the business.
2 Family businesses: These are probably an even more obvious example, with the additional complicating factor of the dynamics of the family relationships and how these tie in with ownership or business needs.
3 Nipping problems early: Why wait until problems become litigious? Mediation can be a very effective way of helping people who are experiencing difficulties, either with third parties like clients or suppliers or with work colleagues inside the business. Either way, problems can be addressed before they escalate and sometimes the relationship can even be strengthened. Think of it as commercial marriage guidance.
4 Boosting year-end figures: With year-ends approaching and an eye on the bottom line, clients may respond favourably when you take stock of an outstanding dispute, particularly if it means that a litigation could be taken off the books or an accounting provision might be substantially reduced.
5 Disputes involving overseas partners: Mediating is considerably easier than litigating or enforcing abroad, while allowing you to retain greater control over conduct of the case.
6 Lower value disputes: Where the amounts involved are relatively small and litigating is unlikely to be cost-effective, mediation offers businesses an efficient way of handling disputes that, especially for smaller or start-up companies, may have a significant financial impact. Please contact me if you would like to know more about how I do this for disputes with a claim value of up to £75,000.