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Those seeking to resolve a dispute in the EU should keep in mind that the parties should be personally involved in pre-mediation negotiations. That said, the involvement of lawyers or attorneys acting as consultants is a quite common practice.

Germany: Mediation Process

According to the MediationG Act, the mediation process must have a specific structure & stages. Its typical structure is as follows:

  • suggesting topics for discussion;
  • clarifying each party's position & interests;
  • coming up with options for resolving a dispute by mediation in Germany;
  • concluding an amicable agreement.

How the parties should prepare for mediation depends on the requirements of the mediator & the complexity of a case. In fact, there’s no particular provisions in the current legislation regulating the parties’ preparation.

The statute of limitations gets suspended for the duration of mediation proceedings. When mediation in Germany is over, the statute of limitations continues to be in effect (upon expiration of a 3-month grace period).

Germany: Concluding a Mediation Agreement

Being increasingly included in contracts, mediation clauses mainly represent tiered clauses. By including a mediation clause in a contract, the parties attempt to resolve a dispute through mediation in Germany & acknowledge that it’s binding on both of them (litigation included).

Initiating Mediation in Germany: Confidentiality

Procedure for resolving a dispute by mediation in Germany is confidential; however, such an obligation is imposed only on mediators. Confidentiality conditions for parties to the conflict (as well as 3rd parties involved in the mediation process) should be specified in special declarations.

There’s exceptions for mediators’ commitments with regard to confidentiality. When resolving a dispute through arbitration in Germany, mediators are also exempt from their obligations to testify in court proceedings. However, this only applies to civil cases.

Disclosing mediation-related information is only allowed if:

  • it’s necessary for executing/enforcing a mediation agreement;
  • it’s necessary due to public policy considerations; 
  • the information isn’t that important.

Considering settling a dispute by mediation in Germany? Need advice on mediation regulation in Germany? Why not contact IQ Decision UK?