About the Clinic
The Clinic was proposed and set up by students from the SMU Mediation and Negotiation Club in 2021. It is administered by the SMU Pro Bono Centre with the help of professional mediators and SMU Law students.
The Clinic provides pro bono (free of charge) mediation services to the financially disadvantaged in Singapore, as well as to students and staff of SMU.
The Clinic operates on an appointment basis throughout the year (except for the months of April and November), depending on the availability of the mediator(s) and the parties.
What is Mediation?
Mediation is a process where both parties can discuss about the dispute and negotiate for mutually beneficial solutions. A neutral third party (professionally trained mediator) will guide the parties through this process and understand both parties’ interests to amicably resolve the dispute. Unlike a judge or arbitrator, the mediator will neither make any finding or judgment, nor provide solutions or legal advice.
Benefits of Mediation
Mediation is a good alternative to litigation with the following benefits:
Saves time and costs
At this stage, lawyers need not be involved, and most mediated disputes can reach settlement within one session. Litigation meanwhile can incur high legal fees and drawn-out proceedings that take months or even years to conclude.
Control over outcomes
You are free to look for creative and sensible ways to resolve your dispute with the help of the volunteer mediators. As mediation is a voluntary process, you can choose to settle only if both sides are satisfied with the proposed terms.
Preserves business/personal relationships
The volunteer mediators will encourage you to communicate openly and express how you think the relationship should move forward beyond the dispute. Hence, mediation is very useful if both sides have to continue to work together or have a long-standing relationship and do not wish to sour the relationship through litigation.
What is discussed in the mediation session(s) will be kept confidential according to the Mediation Act. Mediation is a “without prejudice” process, meaning matters discussed and disclosed during the mediation process cannot be used against the other party in litigation or in arbitration.
Why Mediate with Us?
- Free of charge
- We are conveniently located near City Hall & Bras Basah MRT stations
- Sessions can be arranged at your availability
- Our mediators are professionally trained by the Singapore International Mediation Institute
- Propose the solutions you want
- Saves time (compared to going to court)