ICC’s new Mediation Rules to star in 2014 world tour

  • 30 January 2014
ICC Publications

The new ICC Mediation Rules, which came into force on 1 January 2014, will be the focus of a series of regional launch events for business people, in-house counsel, mediators and other dispute resolution specialists around the world.

From London in March, to Sao Paolo in May and Tokyo in October, ICC Mediation Rules regional launches are planned in at least 12 countries, offering participants a comprehensive overview of the new rules, and a chance to meet some of the people who drafted them.

The rules were built by a taskforce of dispute resolution specialists and company representatives from 29 countries, organized by the ICC Commission on Arbitration and ADR. They replace the ICC ADR Rules, used for amicable dispute resolution since 2001.

“ICC’s regional launch conferences are unmissable for anyone interested in the efficient resolution of complex commercial disputes through mediation,” said Hannah Tuempel, Senior Counsel and Manager of the ICC International Centre for ADR, the body that supervises cases filed under the new rules.

Ms Tuempel added: “The new ICC Rules of Mediation are built for any party involved in a commercial dispute, whether ICC members or not; and in all fields, from construction, to trade and energy to pharmaceuticals.”

With top speakers from ICC, experienced international mediators and in-house counsel, each conference will explain changes to the rules, which include amendments to the confidentiality provision and the standard ICC model clauses, and a strengthened role for the ICC International Centre for ADR. Participants will also hear about combining mediation with arbitration.

Chris Newmark, newly appointed Chair of the ICC Commission on Arbitration and ADR, who also chaired the taskforce that drafted the rules said: “For me, the new ICC Mediation Rules and accompanying ICC Mediation Guidance Notes have two particularly important features. First, the Rules themselves offer simplicity by focusing on mediation rather than ADR more generally. Second, the Guidance Notes give practical guidance, enabling users and their advisers to see how ICC mediation proceedings can be organized and conducted so as to maximize the chances of a successful resolution of the parties’ dispute.”

Businesses choosing mediation

Mediation is usually considerably faster and cheaper than other dispute resolution procedures, taking parties just one or two meetings with a trained mediator to overcome stalemates often encountered in direct negotiations. It also allows parties to decide the exact terms of their settlement, helping reach an outcome that respects their financial, legal, reputational and future business interests.

Speaking at the ICC Mediation Rules global launch in December 2013, Abhijit Mukhopadhyay, President (Legal), Hinduja Group, said: “We turn to mediation because as a business, we’re there to do business, not to litigate or arbitrate. We will always try to see how to resolve a dispute preferably through institutionalized Mediation process: that is the declared policy of the Group. Whosoever we are fighting today, may tomorrow be our business partner, so we must find a settlement at the first instance.”

Kai-Uwe Karl, Senior Counsel Litigation, GE Oil & Gas, Member of the Task Force for the Revision of the ICC ADR Rules, added: “We use mediation for all types of disputes. I find large complex technical disputes are particularly suitable for mediation. The flexibility you have in developing creative solutions means you simply have to attempt mediation! But mediation also makes a lot of sense for small disputes, where courts would simply be too expensive. The beauty of mediation is that we control the proceedings. We decide.”

Since 2001, the ICC International Centre for ADR has mediated cases worldwide involving more than 70 nationalities. Over 75% of the cases transferred to the mediator concluded with a settlement.

The ICC Mediation Rules are currently available in print and online in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.

To view the dates and venues of the different Launch Events visit ICC Events & Trainings