A process whereby a mediation can become an arbitration if no settlement is reached in the course of the mediation.

The ‘threat’ of an arbitration may encourage parties to reach their own settlement. Parties should consider carefully whether this option is suitable for them, and in particular query the extent to which they may be prepared to share confidences which may subsequently prejudice their position before the same individual deciding the case.

Consensus Mediation recommends that parties only consent to this process if the arbitrator is a different individual to the mediator – parties may prefer to try mediation first then reconsider their options if settlement is not reached.

Distinguish the mediator who is appointed arbitrator AFTER the parties have reached agreement in order to make the settlement an enforceable arbitrator’s award.