Scotland

Irvine, Charles (2017) Scotland. In: EU Mediation Law Handbook. Global Trends in Dispute Resolution . Kluwer Law International, Alphen aan den Rijn, Netherlands, pp. 659-695. ISBN 9789041158673

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    Abstract

    Scotland occupies the unique position of being a separate jurisdiction while not, however, a separate state, and as such has its own regulatory framework for mediation. As in other predominantly common law jurisdictions, much of the regulation of mediation is underdeveloped and can be found in the general law and diverse soft law frameworks, such as codes of conduct. The exception to this is the framework for cross-border mediation, which is contained in formal law implementing the provisions of the EU Directive. This dichotomy is reflected in the regulatory robustness ratings, and must be borne in mind by users of mediation in Scotland. In contrast to its neighbouring jurisdictions, the Scottish courts have been loath to address or promote mediation, viewing the process as taking place outside the judicial frame and being regulated by agreement between the mediator and the parties. This is reflected in the ratings for the relationship and attitude of the courts to mediation. The State has, however, promoted some regulation of the mediation profession, albeit in soft form, by providing some funding for the Scottish Mediation Register, established and maintained by the Scottish Mediation Network, in order to meet the requirements in the EU Directive to provide for a code of conduct for mediators. This has put some structure on Scottish mediation services and facilitated access to mediators for users, in a more transparent fashion, compared to the approach taken in other jurisdictions of the United Kingdom.