A modern Law Firm offers its Clients support not only in the area of litigation, but also, or rather first of all, in the area of broadly understood business comfort. This includes: assistance in setting up a company, drafting clear and reliable contracts with contractors, supervision of their execution, ongoing legal, investment and tax advice, prevention of disputes, and if they do arise, resolving them efficiently, cheaply and effectively, preferably amicably.
The use of amicable methods of dispute resolution, so called ADR (Alternative Dispute Resolution) is common in common law countries (legal order characteristic for Anglo-Saxon countries) and in most Western European countries. The “queen” of ADR is mediation, which in Poland, on the basis of provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure, may be used in order to resolve civil disputes (including economic ones) since 2006. Mediation proceedings are initiated both on the basis of an agreement of the parties on mediation
(the so-called pre-court mediation) as well as on the basis of an order of the court in cases already pending before the court.
Compared to traditional court proceedings, mediation is much cheaper, quicker, confidential and guarantees full control over the outcome. Its main advantage is that in accordance with Article 18315 § 1, a settlement agreement made before a mediator (both in the course of a trial and before filing a claim), once it has been approved by a court, has the force of a court settlement agreement, and if the agreement has been approved by means of an enforcement clause, it also becomes a writ of enforcement. Thus, mediation offers the possibility of achieving an effect equal to a court judgment, but not within 3 years, for example, but within 3 months, and with a guarantee of enforceability.
The legislator has also introduced an economic incentive to encourage mediation in civil cases in the form of provisions concerning the reimbursement of court fees or their appropriate part in the event of a conciliatory settlement of a dispute. In accordance with Article 79 of the Act on Court Fees in Civil Cases, if in the course of court proceedings, after the commencement of the hearing, a settlement agreement is reached before a mediator, the court will refund three-quarters of such fee (in the case of a settlement reached before the first hearing, the refund covers 100%). The legislator clearly “promotes” settlements made in the course of mediation, as in the case of concluding a settlement in the course of court proceedings the reimbursement of the fee is only 50%.
For years CDD law firm has been recommending to its clients amicable methods of dispute resolution in an attempt to minimise their effects (also non-material). In this field we offer you the support of professional attorneys and experienced mediators, who have been cooperating with many entrepreneurs, law firms and courts for over a dozen years.
Magdalena Cetera permanent mediator at the District Court in Wrocław