Lord Chief Justice admits that litigants need more encouragement to go to mediation
The Lord Chief Justice has admitted that his 1999 reforms have not gone nearly far enough. At the south east European regional conference on dispute resolution, Lord Woolf admitted that it is going to take a substantial period of time until we get where we really want to with alternative dispute resolution (ADR). He said one reason for this is that mediation, part of ADR, has not been made compulsory. It is inconsistent with my philosophy that people should be able to go to courts if thats really what they want, he explained. He conceded that judges should be able to encourage litigants to go to mediation by asking them to act reasonably or by way of being denied some of their costs.