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Topic: Disciplinary, capability and dismissal

letter to external mediator
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Letter to external mediator

Letter to external mediator

It’s important to carefully choose an external mediator.  Our letter to external mediator is designed to elicit key information that will assist you in making your choice.

External appointment

Disputes that look likely to result in legal proceedings, or which are complicated or high value, are best resolved using an accredited external mediator rather than an in-house mediator, as they will be in a better position to be impartial, facilitate discussions and properly draft the mediation agreement. Whilst many professional mediators are qualified lawyers or possess other relevant qualifications, unfortunately, there’s a lack of industry regulation and currently anyone can set up as a mediator without having any formal training or qualifications. They might not even have professional indemnity insurance cover. Thus, if you do wish to appoint an external mediator, it’s important to first check out their background, qualifications and experience and ensure they are properly accredited. Mediators can cover a variety of different disputes, including family and commercial matters, so look for one who specifically deals in employment matters. Finally, look for a mediator who is a member of the Civil Mediation Council (CMC). The CMC is not a regulatory body but it does require certain professional standards of conduct from its members and it sets minimum requirements on issues such as insurance cover and continuing professional development.

Information request

Our Letter to External Mediator is designed to ask your proposed mediator a series of questions, including when they qualified, what training they have had, what experience they have in dealing with your type of workplace issue, what their success rate is, what professional bodies they are a member of, whether they have insurance, whether they have references they can provide and what their charging structure is. It also requests them to provide a copy of their terms and conditions of business (which you should read carefully), their insurance certificate and confirmation of their availability.


There is no set rate for mediators. Many will ask for an initial fixed fee to prepare for the mediation session and the first few hours’ work and then base it on an hourly rate if the work goes over the estimate, or they might charge an hourly rate from the start. Either way, when asking for a costs estimate, be realistic about the work involved.  Is there a great deal of paperwork?  Is the dispute complicated and hence likely to take time to settle? Finally, you’ll need to pay the mediator - don’t expect your employee to split the costs.


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