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Employment and personal injury set Old Square Chambers has launched a specialist alternative dispute resolution (ADR) group.
The move comes in response to the growing demand for mediation and arbitration following an improved awareness of the benefits of ADR, the set said.
The new mediation and ADR group will be headed by Professor Roy Lewis, a mediator and arbitrator in collective labour relations.
Lewis has been a member of the Acas panel of mediators and arbitrators for 22 years.
"ADR and mediation are not only time and cost-effective, but are also considerably more amicable," said Lewis. "This means that good business relationships can generally be maintained where protracted litigation would have damaged them."
On how the mediation service fits with the set, Jennifer Eady, head of employment at the chambers, said: "We're committed to providing a comprehensive employment law service at Old Square Chambers, and the launch of the ADR group completes the circle."
Old Square's move follows a flurry of mediation activity at the bar, as barristers note the increasing importance of mediation in relation to settling cases early.
Earlier this year Exchange Chambers launched a dedicated mediation group, while the former head of Littleton Chambers Michel Kallipetis QC has teamed up with the set's former chief executive David Douglas to launch mediation outfit Independent Mediators.
The Technology and Construction Court even seized on the need for ADR by piloting a mediation service offered by judges (The Lawyer, 25 June).