 he following is a checklist of things you should be considering ahead of your mediation.


  •  Sign the mediation agreement before the mediation (either your client(s) or you on their behalf).
  •  Get your non-party attendees to sign the confidentiality agreement.
  •  Make sure each side and the mediator knows exactly who will be attending the mediation – unexpected attendees can derail a mediation before it gets going.
  •  Pay the mediator’s fee 😊

Preparing your clients

  • What does your client (i.e. not you or counsel) want out of the mediation? Have they considered parameters for settlement? Does it include non-monetary matters? If so, what are they?
  • What will they do if they do not achieve resolution at the mediation and what are the implications of that in time, money and quality of life?
  • What does your client think about meeting one or more people from the other side at some point during the day?
  • Explain what the current costs position is, including best information about the other side’s costs.
  • Go through your negotiation strategy with them (see below).

Online Pre-mediation meeting with the mediator

  • Consider having the client attend for an introduction and to put questions to the mediator.
  • Tell the mediator about previous offers.
  • Tell the mediator how you think she/he can help you and your client.
  • Consider what information you have about the matter or the parties that it would be helpful for the mediator to know.

Settlement considerations

  • Prepare updates to things like property valuations, schedules (and counter schedules) of loss and statements of needs and resources.
  • Consider tax and other incidental implications of settlement and where necessary take advice about it from colleagues/counsel.
  • Check you have authority to settle, especially from any parties not involved in the mediation.
  • Would further disclosure be helpful to my opponent?
  • Chase up any outstanding disclosure from the other side.
  • Prepare a draft settlement template to avoid starting a lengthy drafting process at the end of a hard negotiation. Keep the drafting concise and avoid long boilerplate belt and braces clauses.

Position statement

  • Identify and acknowledge areas of agreement.
  • Outline the strengths of your case and the weaknesses of your opponents.
  • State in broad terms what your client wants to achieve at the mediation and how that can be done.
  • Start the process of persuading the other side.
  • Consider if you need to prepare a further “mediator only” statement.

Mediation Bundle

  • Less is more.
  • Include the essential documents to enable the mediator to help the parties negotiate their own settlement.
  • Do not prepare a trial bundle.
  • Items such as bank statements or wage slips are virtually never looked at in a mediation so leave them out of the bundle.

Negotiation strategy

  • As a minimum, where are you going to start the negotiation, where will you end and how will you move between those two points. Be flexible as the plan may change in the light of new information.
  • Who will make the first offer? What are the pros and cons?

In Person Mediations

  • Consider if the mediation can be done online.
  • Agree timings for the party arrivals to avoid unpleasant scenes at the start of the day.
  • Check the accessibility needs of your clients/colleagues/counsel.
  • Check dietary needs if catering is being provided and make arrangements for sustenance if they are not.
  • Check travel arrangements, parking availability and (in 2023) if there are any rail strikes.

Online Mediations

  • Check the video platform you are using and make sure all your attendees have the link and know how to use the platform.
  • Get the mediator’s mobile number so you can contact her/him if you have technical issues.
  • If your client is attending your office for the mediation:
    • Avoid using one camera for all of you.
    • Make sure there is no echo.
    • Have another room available for when you want to speak to the mediator or the other side without your client.