The Singapore Mediation Charter and Mediation Clause
SMC launched the Singapore Mediation Charter on 9 September 2011, obtaining pledges from 26 organisations to consider mediation as the first step in their dispute resolution needs. Following the launch, SMC gave presentations to employees, including senior management of Far East Organisation, National Healthcare Group, KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital, Singapore Press Holdings, SoilBuild Group Holdings and ERA Realty Network to acquaint them with mediation and its benefits.
To date, 107 organisations have signed on to the Mediation Charter and made the commitment to promote mediation through 5 core actions:
• Action 1: Considering mediation as the first resort to resolving the organisation’s disputes
• Action 2: Inserting a mediation clause in agreements and forms that the organisation is a party to
• Action 3: Engaging its staff and members in programmes which equip them with the knowledge and skills of mediation
• Action 4: Displaying its name as a signatory to the Mediation Charter on SMC’s website
• Action 5: Where applicable, displaying SMC’s logo or a link which is hyper-linked to SMC's website
SMC also suggests that signatories include the following Mediation Clause in contracts where applicable:
Any dispute arising out of or in connection with this agreement must be submitted for mediation at the Singapore Mediation Centre (SMC) in accordance with SMC’s Mediation Procedure in force for the time being. Either/any party may submit a request to mediate to SMC upon which the other party will be bound to participate in the mediation within [45 days] thereof. Every party to the mediation must be represented by [senior executive personnel, of at least the seniority of a Head of Department] or its equivalent, with authority to negotiate and settle the dispute. Unless otherwise agreed by the parties, the Mediator(s) will be appointed by SMC. The mediation will take place in Singapore in the [English] language and the parties agree to be bound by any settlement agreement reached.
Signatories also enjoy the following benefits:
• A free one-hour talk, ‘Introduction to Mediation at SMC’, for a minimum of 30 attendees identified by the signatories;
• Free legal consultation on the drafting of mediation clauses for the organisation’s use;
• For quantum of claim above $250,000, signatories enjoy $500 off their mediation fees (not applicable to filing fee);
• 15% discount off published rates for staff of the signatories who register for the SMC’s conflict management workshops and seminars;
• 15% off customised in-house conflict management workshops conducted by SMC;
• Listing of the organisation’s name as a signatory to the Mediation Charter on SMC’s website; and
• Invites to exclusive and invitation only events, which include SMC or SMC supported mediation-related events
Signing on to the Mediation Charter is a way of branding your organisation as one that values business and other relationships – in the event of a dispute, you would look to an amicable way of resolving the dispute rather than litigating it.
All discounts offered by SMC are for a period of two years from the date of signing the Mediation Charter. There is no cost to signing the Charter and signatories are not obligated to pursue mediation if it is not appropriate for the issue at hand.
For more information on mediation, please visit www.mediation.com.sg.
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April 2017 Issue. For past issues, read more here.