08/09/2014 by Braithwaite Boyle
Mediation/Judicial Dispute Resolution
Mediation is a process that takes place if the Plaintiff’s lawyer and the Defendant’s lawyer cannot resolve the matter after the Questioning stage. This normally occurs when the two parties are too far apart on the amount of the proper compensation payable to the Plaintiff.
The parties will agree on a mediator who acts as a facilitator to try to resolve the matter. A mediation session is usually a one day event where both parties meet and present their case to the mediator. The mediator’s role is to try and bring the parties together so a proper settlement can be reached. If the mediation session is not successful the case will continue to the next stage which may be a Judicial Dispute Resolution (JDR) or trial.
Judicial Dispute Resolution is a procedure that is presided over by a Judge of the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta. Before a case goes to trial a JDR must occur. During the JDR each party presents their case to the Judge who then makes a non-binding recommendation as to the outcome of the case if it goes to trial. The JDR Judge’s opinion about liability and compensation recoverable by the Plaintiff, is non-binding and confidential. Cases that proceed to a JDR are usually settled without a court trial as both sides have the considered opinion of the JDR Judge about the probable outcome if the case were to proceed to trial.