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08 May 2014

Belfast Plays Host to International Mediation Conference

left to right - Brian Speers, Dispute Resolution Service of the Law Society of Northern Ireland, Richard Palmer, President of the Law Society of Northern Ireland, Lord Kerr, Lord Chief Justice, Sir Declan Morgan, Justice Minister, David Ford MLA, Mark Stephens, Chairman of the Commonwealth Law Association

The growth of Mediation as a means of resolving legal or business disputes was highlighted at an International Mediation Conference which took place in Belfast from Thursday 8th and Friday 9th May 2014.

The international conference which has been organised by the Commonwealth Lawyers Association in conjunction with the Law Society of Northern Ireland, the Dispute Resolution Service and the University of Ulster aims to showcase Northern Ireland as a centre for mediation excellence throughout Europe and wider afield.

Delegates from as far afield as Canada and India attended the two day conference which focussed on themes including confidentiality in mediation and the use of mediation in divorce and commercial cases. .

Interspersed throughout the two day conference were discussions involving academics and lawyers involved in various international commercial mediations around the world who will share their mediation experiences and give their perspectives on what worked, what didn’t work, and what they would aim to do better in future cases.

A highly impressive programme has been organised for the two day conference with international speakers and contributions from Justice Minister David Ford MLA, Master of the Rolls, Lord Kerr of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom and Professor Laurence Boulle author of many leading publications about mediation.

Speaking after the conference, Brian Speers from the Law Society of Northern Ireland and leading mediator said:

“We are delighted to welcome so many international delegates to Belfast. Our hosting this conference will go some way to confirming Northern Ireland as a centre for mediation excellence”.

Mark Stephens, President of the Commonwealth Lawyers Association said:

“The Commonwealth Lawyers Association are delighted that so many important key note speakers and international delegates will be attending the mediation Conference in Belfast which provides the perfect opportunity to share best practice and to discuss policy and procedures from across various jurisdictions on the issue of mediation”.

ENDS