How does it work?
Equillore’s unique multi-tiered managed conciliation, mediation and arbitration process is uncomplicated, innovative and integrated with the formal court processes.
Disputing parties enter into a binding consent agreement, following which we will convene an initial meeting seeking conciliation. If no settlement is reached, the parties can then elect a skilled mediator from our panel of internationally accredited experts, and enter into a more formal mediation.
Should the mediation still not result in settlement, the parties then have the final and conclusive options of appointing an arbitrator or if needs be, reverting back to litigation in court.
At this stage the judge or magistrate will request you to provide confirmation of attempts to settle the matter as a condition for allocating a court date.
Who are the mediators and arbitrators?
Our panel of internationally accredited mediators and arbitrators are trained and experienced in resolving disputes and guiding parties to settlement.
They are neutral: they do not take sides. They help people explore the problem and find new options to resolve the dispute.
They do not judge who is right or wrong and do not give legal advice. They are governed by a strict code of ethics under the stewardship of the African Centre for Dispute Settlement.
What are the benefits?
Mediation can in most instances resolve disputes without going to trial. This translates to significant savings in time and money.
The adversarial nature of litigation often damages relationships and keeps parties apart from finding the common ground required for settlement.
Mediation sessions are private and confidential, and the deliberations cannot be used against you in court (without prejudice).
You may consult an attorney to advise you and if required, attend the settlement meetings with you.
Mediation empowers parties to find their own solution.
How do I prepare?
- Clear your mind of the dispute
- Focus on settlement and where you will be willing to compromise.
- Collect documents – such as invoices, correspondence, statements and photographs – that support your case.
- Be prepared to:
- discuss what is important to you;
- listen to the other party; and
- work on resolving the matter.
How long will it take?
Typically Equillore will convene a two-hour conciliation meeting as soon as it receives the referral and advise both parties of the date within 24 hours.
Mediation will typically take two to six sessions of two hours.
You will be able to bring the matter to closure in days and weeks, and not the months and years associated with litigation.
How much does it cost?
All disputes referred to Equillore start with a preparatory meeting of two hours.
A minimum fee of R4 950 will be charged, and is payable on referral. This includes the services of a trained conciliator (a qualified mediator) who will attempt to negotiate a settlement, failing which will assist in the planning of a mediation (or an arbitration if preferred).
If the matter does not settle at this stage, the parties can then decide to:
- Arrange follow-up concilliation session
- Proceed to a formal mediation
- Proceed to a formal arbitration
Subsequent costs will be determined by the duration of the matter and the seniority of mediator/arbitrator selected.
Mediator and Arbitrator fees are determined on a sliding scale based on seniority and experience, starting from R2,500 per day for a conciliator on the low end of the scale.
Costs are agreed on at all times by the parties themselves as part of the forward planning of the settlement process.
Fees charged by your attorney are not included.
How do I start?
Since the use of appropriate dispute mechanisms is voluntary, consent from the opposing party is required. If no consent is obtained before the matter is referred to Equillore, we will endeavour to facilitate the consent from the opposing party.
From the point of referral onwards we take care of all of the administration on your behalf to free you up to focus on the preparation of your case.