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  • We can`t do anything better than quote Legal Island  –    http://www.legal-island.ie/  – on their email Article quoted below :

    The Cross-Border Mediation Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2011 came into operation on 18th April 2011.

    They make amendments to various pieces of legislation, including the following employment legislation:

    * Equal Pay Act (Northern Ireland) 1970
    * Sex Discrimination (Northern Ireland) Order 1976
    * Employment Rights (Northern Ireland) Order 1996
    * Fair Employment and Treatment (Northern Ireland) Order 1998

    The overall aim is to promote the use of mediation as a means of resolving cross-border disputes (i.e. where at least one of the parties is domiciled or habitually resident in a different Member State). They also allow for an extension to court time limits. In certain disputes the compensation . It is usually three years for personal injury cases in Northern Ireland and two years for personal injury cases in the Republic of Ireland and six years for other claims. After this time, you are very unlikely to be able to make a claim, although there are exceptions to this. Your solicitor will advise you about the limitation period that applies in your particular case. This is a good reason for seeing a solicitor as soon as you think you may have a claim for compensation.</p> ">limitation period is extended so that it expires on the date falling 8 weeks after the date on which the mediation ends.

    The explanatory memorandum points out that the following six primary requirements are imposed by the Directive:

    1. Mediation/mediator quality and awareness: States must encourage mediators to operate under published voluntary codes of conduct and encourage the training of mediators (Article 4).
    2. Recourse to mediation: States must ensure that it is possible for a court to invite parties to use mediation in order to settle a dispute or to invite the parties to attend an information session on the use of mediation, if such sessions are held and easily available (Article 5).
    3. Enforceability of mediated settlements: States must ensure that written agreements negotiated through mediation are capable of being made enforceable, if all the parties involved agree to this being done (Article 6).
    4. Mediation confidentiality: Subject to specified exceptions, mediation providers cannot be compelled to give evidence in civil proceedings
    (Article 7).
    5. Prevention of the expiry of limitation or prescription periods during mediation: States must ensure that no party can be prevented from
    initiating proceedings because a limitation or prescription period has expired during the mediation process (Article 8).
    6. Information for the general public: States must encourage the availability, particularly on the internet, of information on how to contact mediation providers (Article 9).

    Most of the above requirements have already been met or can be met via administrative action. However, there are a number of limitation periods which must be amended in order to ensure compliance with the fifth requirement. The Regulations will effect the required amendments and reinforce the point about non-compellability.

    Non-employment areas and legislation covered by these regulations are:

    * Land Registration Act (Northern Ireland) 1970
    * Amendment of the Matrimonial Causes (Northern Ireland) Order 1978
    * Domestic Proceedings (Northern Ireland) Order 1980
    * Magistrates’ Courts (Northern Ireland) Order 1981
    * Limitation (Northern Ireland) Order 1989

    The Cross-Border Mediation (EU Directive) Regulations 2011 come into force on 20 May. These cover cross-border disputes in England and Wales:

    Cross-Border Mediation (Scotland) Regulations 2011, which came into force on 6th April 2011 are here:


    Ireland has not yet implemented the cross-border Mediation Directive 2008/52/EC. Like all other EU Member States, it is obliged to do so by 21 May 2011. However, it is highly unlikely that this will be achieved as, at present, there is not even any draft legislation before the Oireachtas.

    The Law Reform Commission’s report on “Alternative Dispute Resolution: Mediation and Conciliation” on 16 November 2010 makes over 100 reform recommendations, including a recommendation that a Mediation and Conciliation Act should be enacted to provide a clear framework for mediation and conciliation. The Appendix to the Report contains a “draft” Mediation and Conciliation Bill, 2010 which includes provisions for “Cross-Border Mediation in the European Union”. However, the Oireachtas has confirmed that, to date, no Bill has been presented by either a relevant Government Department or Private Member. Therefore, according to the Oireachtas, it “does not exist”.

    The section of the Department of Justice website which provides information on EU Directives currently being transposed by the Department lists the status of Directive 2008/52/EC as follows:

    “The Directive is at an early stage of review in terms of how best to secure implementation with the national framework.”

    Unfortunately, for the moment, there would not appear to be anything to compare our NI regulations with in Ireland.

    For further information in relation to ROI, the following links are useful: