Mediation is at varying stages of development in Member States. There are some Member States with comprehensive legislation or procedural rules on mediation. In others, legislative bodies have shown little interest in regulating mediation. However, there are Member States with a solid mediation culture, which rely mostly on self-regulation.
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More and more disputes are being brought to court. As a result, this has meant not only longer waiting periods for disputes to be resolved, but it has also pushed up legal costs to such levels that they can often be disproportionate to the value of the dispute.
Mediation is in most cases faster and, therefore, usually cheaper than ordinary court proceedings. This is especially true in countries where the court system has substantial backlogs and the average court proceeding takes several years.
This is why, despite the diversity in areas and methods of mediation throughout the European Union, there is an increasing interest for in this means of resolving disputes as an alternative to judicial decisions.
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