Mediation for Contract Disputes

Contract law is complicated and can often lead to dispute

Stewart Patterson - barrister, commercial and business property expert

Wherever goods and services are traded, contracts exist. They can be either express or implied and business relationships do depend on them.

In spite of the fact that contracts are in place problems still arise. Sometimes this occurs through misunderstandings or error, at other times they occur through the attempt by one of the parties to obtain an unfair advantage

This can often lead to conflict and the need to resolve the problem.  In many cases the first thought is to take it to court.  But is that necessarily the best solution?  Going to court can be expensive, so much so that the cost can sometimes exceed the value of the subject matter in dispute.  Just as bad is the fact that it can take months or even years to get a decision on what may seem to you to be a straightforward issue.  Is one of the parties in breach of the contract?

Contract Law is complicated

Contract law is continually evolving and becoming more complicated. That is partly because of the burgeoning regulations enacted for the benefit of consumers, and partly due to interpretive decisions of the courts.  Provisions related to human rights play a part in this and there has also been growth in matters related to internet and software related contracts. However developments have not been limited to these sectors.

Contracts are usually between two or more parties, but may also involve others, notably when exercising third party rights. It may be a partner, customer or client, an agent or perhaps a member of staff who is breaching an agreement that you have.

Implied and explicit contracts

Contract Law and Commercial Law

Whether a particular contractual agreement is written or oral, or the terms are implied by the behaviour of the parties, laws still apply. When you are having problems it is best to try and resolve them as soon as possible.  First approach the other party to try and reach agreement.  Failing that, if you can at least get the other party’s agreement to go to mediation, you may be able to resolve the problem without the stress and expense of going to court. 

Keep in mind that just because there is no written agreement, it does not mean that there are no responsibilities or obligations for the parties involved.

The benefits of talking to a specialist barrister

In order to resolve these kinds of issues successfully in a complicated case, it may be advisable to seek the advice of a barrister or solicitor, who has an understanding of the relevant law.  If the dispute is one of substance they will be able to help not only with trying to negotiate a settlement, but if it comes to a mediation, can represent your interests there and help you get the right result. 

My best advice to you is that you take action now. The longer a dispute drags on, the more entrenched the parties become and the more difficult it becomes to resolve it.

Get the right legal advice faster

Rather than following the process of going through a solicitor to be referred on to a barrister, you can now, if you prefer to do so, contact some barristers directly yourself. This way you will have the help that you need almost immediately. Avoiding unnecessary delays, you will also avoid the extra expense that is incurred when being referred by a solicitor.

Stewart Patterson is an experienced barrister of long standing, he has a depth of knowledge ofcommercial law and contract law issues and is well equipped to act as a mediator in such disputes.

By taking action now the process is easy and fast. Very quickly you will be confident that you are dealing with a specialist. You can make your initial enquiry by phone or email and this is free to do.

Further Resources

Stewart Patterson Arbitrator Mediator

Stewart Patterson Mediation Profile

‘Who should’ & ‘How to’ take action

You should make contact straight away if…

  • Someone is breaking the terms of an agreement, written or otherwise
  • You have a contractual problem with a franchise holder, a partnership or an agency
  • A supplier has failed to meet their obligations
  • A customer has failed to meet their obligations
  • You are relying on a contract which requires to be interpreted.

Contact Stewart Patterson Barrister

Contact Information

We wholeheartedly welcome you to contact us regarding any legally related issues or concerns. We're easy to talk with and will very quickly steer you in the right direction.

Stewart Patterson
Barrister, Mediator & Arbitrator

Pump Court Chambers,
31 Southgate Street,
SO23 9EB
Tel: 01962 690061
Fax: 0845 259 3240
DX: 2514 Winchester