Things between community members don’t always go smoothly. It’s always best to try to resolve any disputes between community members by talking to them and seeing if you can reach a mutual agreement. You can even write them a letter setting out the problem and how you’d like to resolve it. But if those don’t work, the next best step is mediation. At CAB, we offer a low-cost Community Mediation Service where community members in a dispute can come together with trained mediators to negotiate a fair and workable solution for everyone.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is mediation?
Mediation is an alternative way of resolving a dispute where the parties sit down together and, guided by mediators, negotiate a practical and fair solution to their problem. It gives everyone the opportunity to tell their side of the story, define issues, consider options, and settle on a solution that suits them. Mediation is guided by experienced and professionally qualified mediators. They’re impartial and don’t give any advice or make any decisions for the parties; they’re there to help parties focus on the best way forward.
If mediation is successful, the result is a mutual agreement that is written in the parties own words. This isn’t legally binding, but it can be used as a basis for court applications.
How does mediation work?
Once the parties have agreed to mediation, we’ll book a separate pre-mediation interview for each party. This is an opportunity for you to tell your side of the story without the other party there. It’s also a good time to ask any questions or raise any issues you’re unsure about. The mediator will explain how mediation works so you’re fully prepared.
After the pre-mediation interview, we'll complete an assessment of suitability for mediation. If mediation proceeds, we'll book a mediation appointment for the parties to attend together, in the presence of our mediators. We use a co-mediation model with two mediators to make sure the process is balanced and unbiased.
How much does community mediation cost?
A pre-mediation appointment costs $75 per party. A community mediation costs $150 per party.
Types of community disputes we can help with:
- Dividing Fences;
- Retaining Walls;
- Encroaching Roots & Branches;
- Disputes in Community Groups;
- Dog Ownership;
- Harassment; and
- Public Nuisance Disputes.
For more information about community mediation at CAB, contact us.