What is Mediation?

Mediation is an alternative dispute resolution method through which two or more parties try to settle a dispute by reaching an agreement with the mediator's assistance.

Mediators are neutral persons assisting the parties in identifying their interests, resolving disputes, and reaching agreements. Additionally, mediators promote constructive communication between the parties and provide the required setting to reach an agreement.

A mediation process enables parties to discuss different views related to disputed issues and focus on achieving an outcome acceptable for each of them. Consequently, no party loses in mediation, and everyone eventually emerges a winner. Unlike the court and arbitration hearing, parties themselves make decisions in a mediation process. Furthermore, a mediation process focuses on parties and is entirely adjusted to their needs. At the mediation process, an agreement, which will result in a partial or full resolution of the conflict, is reached quickly and with fewer expenses.

Additionally, mediation is a confidential and voluntary process. Its sessions are conducted in a neutral and relatively informal setting in which parties can present their requirements, pursue their interests, and discuss views related to dispute resolution in order to maintain relations that are important to them and effectively settle the conflict.

Generally, a mediation process involves several meetings between the parties and a mediator; these meetings may also involve one or more confidential sessions or private meetings. Private meetings, during which additional confidentiality guarantees are ensured, are held between a party and the mediator.

During the mediation process, parties may have representatives. The role of representatives is essential when parties settle the dispute and conclude a written mediation agreement. The mediation agreement may be subject to voluntary or compulsory fulfilment. It may be forwarded to the court for approval for the purposes of issuance of an enforcement paper.

In the case of a failure to successfully end mediation, parties in dispute are entitled to resolve their disagreement via arbitration or in court.


How it works


What is mediation ?

According to the Law of Georgia on Mediation, mediation is a process, despite its name, in which two or more parties discuss their disputes with the assistance of a mediator who helps them resolve the dispute and reach an agreement regardless of whether the process started at the parties’ initiative or on the basis and under the procedure provided for by law.

What is Mandatory (Court) Mediation?
When a lawsuit is filed in the court, the judge may decide to refer the parties to mandatory court annexed mediation. Such referral is mandatory if the case falls within one of the following categories:
  • Family disputes, except for disputes related to adoption, annulment of adoption, revocation of adoption, restriction of parental rights, deprivation of parental rights, and violence against women and/or domestic violence

  • Inheritance and neighbourhood disputes;

  • Labour disputes, except for collective disputes envisaged under the Organic Law of Georgia "Labour Code of Georgia";

  • Cases regarding realization of co-ownership;

  • Property disputes, if the disputed amount does not exceed 20 000 GEL;

  • Disputes stemming from loan agreements (including electronic loan agreements) signed by banks, microfinance institutions or nonbank depositary institutions of Georgia, if the disputed amount does not exceed 10 000 GEL; and

  • Non-property disputes;

What is Court Mediation?

Court Mediation is not mandatory if it involves a case that does not fall under the categories when a judge can unilaterally refer the case to court mediation, or if the parties had signed a mediation agreement before the dispute arose and the private mediation procedure was undertaken but parties failed to achieve a mutual agreement. In such case the judge may transfer the case to court mediation only upon parties' consent.

What is Private Mediation?

Private Mediation takes place without any lawsuit being filed, on the basis of parties’ initiative, based on a mediation agreement.

What advantages does Mediation have as an alternative dispute resolution method?
  • Effectiveness and cost efficiency - Mediation as an alternative dispute resolution mechanism is faster and cheaper than litigation in courts.

  • Control over the outcome - Unlike litigation, in mediation the parties themselves make decisions, the risk of an unfavourable outcome is mitigated.

  • Confidentiality - Since the majority of court hearings are public, the confidential nature of mediation is attractive for many.

  • The potential to maintain important relationships - For many parties  it is important to maintain a relationship after the resolution of a dispute. Unlike courts, there is a significant potential to maintain a relationship through and after mediation.