SERVICES & CASE STUDIES
Mediation can effectively resolve a host of legal disputes. Our Mediators are legal experts with experience in business/commercial law, intellectual property law, employment law, technology law, property law, banking law, family law etc. They are also well trained and skilled in the mediation process and are adept to guide the most complex legal disputes.
Our Mediators are supported by Case Managers who are also available to parties to assist them in the mediation process. CAMP is focussed on providing a neutral and comfortable environment where most legal disputes can be resolved in an effective way.
Disputes including breach of contract, non-payment of dues, insurance claims, commercial agreements such as lease agreements, joint venture and shareholder agreements, etc.
X and Y are two companies. X is engaged in the business of supplying raw materials. Y enters into a contract with X for the supply of certain goods. Y defaults in the payment of amounts claimed by X. X files a winding up petition against Y. Y denies any amounts due and complains of defects in goods supplied and deficiency of service. X and Y agree to mediation.
During mediation, both parties through detailed discussions in the presence of a Mediator after careful scrutiny of all financial statements had an opportunity to understand their differences. Y clearly appreciated the services rendered by X over the past several years, but was unhappy with the quality of the last batch of goods supplied by X. X and Y recognised that there were miscommunications between them. Y explained the temporary cash flow problems due to business diversification and development. X saw increased opportunities in Y’s new business expansion. The case settled and the end result was the renewal of business relations between X and Y.
The Mediator created a safe environment for joint fact finding. The parties could together study the transactions and financial statements. The Mediator was continuously working for the process. The Mediator helped both the parties see each other’s perspective, brought in clarity and probed for more information, thought of creative ideas to break impasses and encouraged them to continue to work towards resolution. With better exchange of information and communication, both parties recognised the value of finding mutually acceptable terms and continuing their relationship.
Disputes relating to termination of employment, violation of non competing provisions, breach of employment contracts etc.
B is a senior executive of Company Z. Company Z, during reorganisation decided to terminate the services of B with immediate effect and paid B a lump sum consideration in lieu of his termination from employment. B wants to sue Company Z for wrongful termination asking for a directive for reinstatement. They agree to mediate the dispute.
At the beginning of mediation the management and the employee took hard positions. Numbers were being negotiated and the discussions were getting nowhere. During the private session, anguished by the management’s behaviour, B explained to the Mediator the instances of his commendable work which the management failed to acknowledge. He expressed concern about his future prospects and felt disappointed and betrayed by the recommendation letter given by Company Z. The Mediator felt the need to humanize the negotiation. He worked with the employee to be able to narrate his perspective and express his emotions to the management in a manner that would not get them defensive. When this happened, the dynamics of the negotiation changed.
As a settlement, Company Z agreed to pay a higher settlement package for termination to B. The recommendation letter was redrafted highlighting B’s strengths and commending in detail, the good work done by B. B agreed not to malign Company Z and accepted the terms as a full and final settlement of all claims in relation to the termination.
In the private session at mediation, the employee in a non-defensive manner was able to express his underlying concerns. Mediator worked with both parties to communicate better with each other. The real life experiences and emotions, when expressed without blame, humanised the negotiation. With less anger, emotion and more empathy, parties were able to address each other’s genuine concerns. Creative solutions emerged that added value to both sides.
Landlord-tenant disputes, disputes relating to ownership and possession of property, disputes relating to purchase and sale, inheritance, partition or enjoyment of property (movable and immovable), etc.
Landlord filed suit for eviction against the tenant. Landlord and tenant were earlier good friends. During negotiation at mediation, tenant agreed to vacate within three years whereas the landlord insisted that he wanted the tenant to vacate in one year.
In the private session, when the Mediator noticed the rigidity of the landlord regarding the ‘one year’ period, he explored why vacating in ‘one year’ was crucial. The landlord confessed that he was terminally ill and had only 2 to 3 years to live. He urgently wanted the premises to set up his son in business during his lifetime.
Mediator through the help of the landlord’s legal counsel, in private session, helped him understand how cases of this nature could take several years in Court. The Mediator requested if the information on his ill health could be shared with the tenant. The landlord agreed. The tenant was surprised with his friend’s ill health. He agreed to vacate in one year provided he would be allowed to store some of his things in same premises for an additional 6 months. Landlord also agreed to immediately reimburse the security deposit paid for the house so that the tenant could explore the purchase of a new premises.
While parties take positions, they are often safeguarding other interests which they are not willing to disclose and may have not thought through thoroughly. As the Mediator gained the trust of the parties, they were more comfortable about sharing private information and allowing the Mediator to lead them to the reality of the situation.
Disputes involving family businesses and properties, wills and succession, matrimonial disputes including separation, divorce, child custody, maintenance etc.
Husband filed a petition for divorce in Court. Wife was against the divorce and therefore filed for restitution of conjugal rights. Husband did not pay maintenance during this period and wife filed a petition for maintenance. She did not allow him access to visit the children and he filed another petition for visitation rights to his children. She also filed petitions under the Domestic Violence Act and also under sec 498A of the Indian Penal Code alleging cruelty. Parties were tired and frustrated fighting 6 cases. Their work routine was suffering, mental health was frayed and the turbulence at home had a grave impact on their children. The Court referred the case to mediation.
At mediation, several sessions later, the wife realised that the life of their marriage is over. Husband had moved on and continuing to fight will ruin 4 precious lives. Husband agreed to pay a lump sum as alimony for the wife and maintenance for the children. The amount was sufficient for them to be comfortable. Wife agreed to give liberal visitation rights to the husband as she realised that the children needed the father.
Adjudicatory process is a process where the blows get harder. Litigation breeds litigation. One dispute resulted in 6 cases. In mediation, connected cases and connected issues were all brought in to resolve the dispute. One mediation session resolved all the 6 cases.
Disputes relating to trademark license agreements, outsourcing agreements, infringement and trademark and copyright issues, etc.
The author of his first book entered into a publishing and distribution contract with a publishing house. The publisher formulated the distribution strategy without consulting the author. The author was excited by the response to the book but upset that the publisher was not willing to expand the distribution space to cope with the demand he was anticipating.
Before the dispute escalated, both parties agreed to try mediation. During mediation, the author realised that the distribution strategy was adequately effective. However, it was important for him to be more involved in the decisions regarding distribution. He was also concerned that the publisher had both national and international publishing and distribution rights. The publisher wanted to be cautious as earlier he had bitter experiences with other authors. He was concerned that that the book may not sell sufficiently and his strategy was to not take any excessive risk. In mediation, the author bought back the publishing rights and enters into a fresh distribution agreement with the publisher restricting rights to India alone.
The agreement between the author and distributor were entered into in good faith, but was in haste. When practicalities were to be handled and the expectations of both parties were not satisfactorily met, there was a need to rework on the earlier agreement. But communication between the two was difficult and negotiation was at an impasse. Several cognitive barriers were at play. They were suspicious of each other. Bitter earlier experiences with other authors, caused the publisher to selectively focus only on certain communications. Each party overestimated the value of what they had done. Mediator used techniques to break through cognitive barriers and bring back the flow of communication. He then helped both parties negotiate a fresh agreement.
Disputes relating to oppression and mismanagement, winding up, voting rights, etc.
B and X comprised the majority 2 out of the 3 shareholders of Company G. There was a disagreement on the management of Company G. B and X had recently obtained majority shares in Company G. K who was the third shareholder of Company G was dissatisfied by the manner in which B and X had gained their majority and withdrew his support to Company G. As a result the growth of Company G stagnated. K filed an oppression and mismanagement petition which was countered by the other two majority shareholders. Company G is in losses and faces closure.
All parties agree to try mediation. During mediation K was able to explain his frustrations. Although he was a highly qualified technically, B and X took all decisions disregarding his inputs and suggestions. He was not given enough opportunities to meet customers when he felt his customer relations were good. He found it difficult to continue working with B and X.
At mediation, they agreed to part ways. K got a lump sum and moved on selling his shares to B and X.
During mediation they realised that if the impasse continued, Company G would face severe losses. In case an official liquidator was to be appointed, they would all be losers. Mediation provided a forum for them to come to a wise decision and salvage the company.
Disputes relating to breach of sports contracts, entertainment contracts, media issues etc.
An internationally known sports person files a case against his sports association. The litigation raged on for almost ten years. It was a vindictive battle of egos with the individual being stripped of his membership rights and, according to him, humiliated in many ways. According to him, the years of litigation affected his performance at the international level.
In mediation, all issues were brought out, informal apologies were tendered, monetary claims and counter-claims were withdrawn, and all membership rights were restored to the sportsman.
Mediation created a space for apology which was not possible until then.