1. Conduct of Mediation Process
The mediator shall make reasonable efforts at the start of the mediation session to ensure that the parties and their advisors understand the mediation process, their roles and the role of the mediator, and the enforceability of any resulting agreement.
The mediator must ensure that all parties have adequate opportunities to be involved in the process, conduct the mediation session in an appropriate manner, take into account the circumstances of the case, and include any wishes that parties may wish to express as well as their need for a prompt settlement of the dispute.
The mediator must take all appropriate measures to ensure that it is through informed consent by both parties that an agreement is reached and that all parties must understand the terms of the agreement.
The mediator shall act professionally at all times and shall not engage in behaviour that will bring the mediator or the Institute into disrepute.
The mediator may terminate the mediation session having informed the parties, if the mediator considers that continuing the mediation is unlikely to result in a settlement or if a settlement is being reached, the settlement appears to the mediator illegal or unenforceable, having regard to the circumstances of the case and also to the competency level of the mediator relevant to the subject matter in question. The mediator will terminate the session if requested by a party and/or the parties.
The mediator shall, before accepting an assignment, satisfy himself that he has the appropriate time available to enable him to conduct the mediation in an expeditious and diligent manner, and has the necessary expertise, skills and experience to competently conduct the mediation.
The mediator must disclose to the parties before acting or continuing to act if there are circumstances that may, or may be seen to, affect the mediator’s independence or give rise to a conflict of interest.
A conflict of interest includes any personal or business relationship with one or more parties; and the mediator or a member of his firm had previously acted in any capacity for one or more parties. In such cases, the mediator may only agree to act or continue to act if he is certain that he can exercise full independence in order to ensure impartiality and /or the parties explicitly consent to him continuing to act.
4. Principle of self-determination
The mediator shall inform the parties that the authority for decision-making rests with the parties and not with the mediator.
The mediator shall not provide legal or professional advice to the parties. The mediator may express views or opinions on the matters at issue, and may use an evaluative approach, and where the mediator does so it shall not be construed as providing legal or professional advice to the party.
The mediator shall, where appropriate, advise the parties of the need to consult with other professionals to help parties make informed decisions.
The mediator must act and endeavour to be seen to act with impartiality towards the parties, and be committed to conduct the mediation session fairly and equally to the parties.
The mediator must keep confidential all information arising out of or in connection with the mediation, unless on grounds of public policy or compelled by law to disclose it.