Independent review of mediation: our response

Our response to the independent review of mediation in Scotland.

Next Steps

A Scottish Dispute Resolution Delivery Group will meet for the first time early in 2020 with representatives from key organisations including Scottish Mediation and the Scottish Courts and Tribunal Service to develop and shape an evidence-based package of reform.

The work of the Group is expected to focus on:

  • Consideration of how the Early Dispute Resolution Office would work in practice.
  • Consideration of the wider Dispute Resolution infrastructure to ensure that that provision of advice, assistance and representation for resolving civil disputes is co-ordinated, seamless, effective and efficient.
  • Consideration of the standards required for mediators and complaints process
  • Consideration of the possible financial model for mediation and other forms of Dispute Resolution in the civil justice system in Scotland.
  • Consideration of the need for public awareness raising of a range of options for resolving disputes effectively and within a reasonable timeframe.
  • Consideration of what training is required for the legal profession on dispute resolution. The Scottish Government is clear that any such training must involve training on dealing with domestic abuse to ensure that victims of domestic abuse and children are not put at risk.
  • Consideration of whether legislation is required and to what extent amendments can be made to the current system of dispute resolution without the need for legislation.
  • Consideration of implementation arrangements (for example, whether the approach would be phased in initially through particular court or tribunals).

Following initial discussions with the delivery group and the Collaborative Partnership in 2020, the Scottish Government will issue a public consultation to seek the views of the general public, stakeholders and other interested parties on the proposed package of reform for dispute resolution.

We will publish a public consultation to seek to build consensus on the way forward for Mediation and wider dispute resolution reforms in the civil justice system in Scotland in 2020.

In moving this work forward, it will be critical to focus on the user of the system to ensure that the reforms empower our people, our organisations and our communities to resolve disputes and other civil justice problems at the earliest opportunity and in the most appropriate way, whilst always retaining the rights of people in Scotland to access courts in determination of their rights.



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