How Much Does Mediation Cost?Nick Richards FDRP LL.B MBA GDLP DMgmt MQLS
The cost of mediation is affordable
The costs of mediation are generally split between the parties to the dispute.
Mediation organisations will generally charge the following: –
- an hourly fee for each party to brief them on the matter;
- an hourly rate for the mediation conference; and
- an hourly rate on document drafting;
- an hourly rate on correspondence outside the formal consultation and mediation conference;
- an additional fee for legal representation.
Many registered and accredited mediators are Solicitors or Barristers that have considerable experience negotiating and advocating and bring many transferrable skills to mediation to assist parties to resolve their disputes in a prompt time.
The starting rate for an accredited and registered mediator will generally range between $400 – $600 an hour, which equates to between $200 and $300 per hour per party. This is considerably cheaper than an experienced family lawyer charging each party $600 an hour or a barrister specialising in family law at $6,000 per day.
The key cost benefit of mediation is that, unlike the court system, a party is not liable for the other party’s costs. In the court system, an unsuccessful party may be liable for the cost of the other party’s legal fees plus any other judgment/order made by the court.
A survey of experienced mediators in Australia outlined the range in which mediators would charge per party in total for the following matters:
- Family mediation (parenting) – $1,100 to $2,250;
- Family mediation (property) – $1,200 to $2,400;
- Lease dispute – $1,500 to $2,000;
- Partnership/Shareholders Agreement dispute – $2,000 to $3,200
- Community mediation – $400 to $600
- Relationship mediation – $1,100 to $1,400
- Inheritance dispute – $1,800 to $2,400
- Elder care dispute – $850 to $1,750
When considering the time and money spent in the court process along with the risk of being liable for the other parties’ legal costs, it comes as no surprise that mediation is growing each and every year as a formidable alternative to the rigid structure of the court.
NOTICE: The above is not legal advice and it is recommended that you obtain tailored legal advice related to your own personal circumstances from an Australian legal practitioner.