Mediation is a special method for resolution of legal disputes that allows the conflicting parties to jointly find a constructive solution acceptable by both parties, through negotiations held with the assistance of a third party – the mediatior. This solution will not mean that one party has won while the other has lost, but that they have both gained something.
Mediation has a set of positive features, and without going into comparisons between the mediation procedures and court proceedings resulting in actual verditcs, we would like to emphasize that, for many legal matters, mediation is a much more efficient and better method of legal disputes resolution.
As a specific method of legal disputes resolution, mediation may be applied in various areas of social relations. Mediation is managed by a neutral third party that helps the conflicting parties to understand the nature of their dispute, to view the dispute from every angle, to identify their interests and needs, and to find a solution that meets the interest of all parties in conflict. It is not possible to apply mediation in every legal dispute, and therefore it is necessary to realize its importance in those disputes which, in line with the law, may be resolved through an agreement of both parties, peacefully, with a settlement.
When solving a problem by mediation, a mediator acts as a negotiator. With his or her role, a mediator may change the flow and pacing of negotiations, may influence the behavior of conflicting parties by using the right information at the right moment, and may help to overcome a crisis in communication, always emphasizing the importance of a potential agreement between the conflicting parties. What a mediator cannot do is to solve the dispute on his or her own behalf, because in mediation, dispute resolution is up to the parties alone.
The Law on Prohibition of Discrimination recognized the importance of resolving discrimination-related conflicts by means of mediation. Therefore, the Law proposes the implementation of the reconciliation procedure, in line with the law that regulates the mediation procedure (Article 38 of the Law on Prohibition of Discrimination).