Prepared by:
Doreen Crosby, Manager,
Alternate Dispute Resolution
Insurance Corporation of British Columbia
July 1995

"Executive Summary

Mediation, if done properly and early in the litigation process, can be used to resolve disputes in a timely and cost-effective manner. The results reported here support our recommendation for the increased use of mediation, by ICBC, in early dispute resolution.

The data for this study were obtained from claim files that were resolved at mediation, through negotiation or at trial, The files were drawn from three places:

1) Kingsway Claim Centre (Test Centre)
2) Head Office Claims
3) All Other Centres (47 claim offices throughout the province)

Analysis showed the files mediated within the All Other Centres category were costing more to settle than in the other categories. These files did not proceed to mediation until very late in the litigation process. As a result, non-pecuniary* payouts have been comparable to trial awards with considerable expenses incurred.

The All Other Centres data were then compared to the data from the Test Centre (Kingsway) where a mediation specialist works with others to ensure that mediation occurs early in the process. The Test Centre (Kingsway) data indicate that mediated files at this claim centre resolve at less cost in all areas of expenditure, including non-pecuniaries. This holds true when we compare Test Centre (Kingsway) mediated files to files mediated or negotiated at All Other Centres.

Although this report does not deal with customer satisfaction benefits surrounding mediation, other sources demonstrate that such benefits are significant"

The full text of this study is available at the web sites of the Alternate Dispute Resolution Centers.

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