Mediation In Turkey

Mediation In Turkey
Mediation In Turkey
Table of Contents

Mediation is a growing trend in Turkey, offering an alternative dispute resolution (ADB – Arabuluculuk Daire Başkanlığı) method for various legal issues. It’s a structured process where a neutral third party, the mediator, facilitates communication between conflicting parties to reach a mutually agreeable solution.

What is Mediation?

Mediation is a voluntary, confidential, and structured negotiation process where a neutral facilitator, the mediator, guides the parties involved in a dispute to reach a solution themselves. The mediator doesn’t impose a decision but helps the parties explore options, understand each other’s perspectives, and work towards a mutually beneficial agreement.

Why Use Mediation?

Mediation offers numerous advantages over traditional litigation:

  • Cost-effective: Mediation is generally less expensive than going to court.
  • Time-saving: Mediation can resolve disputes faster than litigation, which can drag on for months or even years.
  • Confidentiality: Discussions during mediation are confidential, unlike court proceedings which are public.
  • Preserves Relationships: Mediation can help maintain relationships between parties, which is crucial in situations like family disputes.
  • Increased Control: Parties have more control over the outcome in mediation compared to a judge’s ruling in court.

Areas of Mediation

Mediation can be applied to a wide range of legal issues in Turkey, including:

  • Family Mediation:

    In Turkey, mediation is not mandatory in divorce cases. However, if the parties wish, they can resolve their disputes with the help of a lawyer. This means that it is possible for parties to resort to family mediation during the process of preparing a consensual divorce protocol about divorce settlements, child custody arrangements, visitation rights, and division of assets.

  • Civil Law:

    Contract disputes, property disagreements, debt collection, and neighborly conflicts.

  • Commercial Law:

    Partnership disputes, shareholder disagreements, and breach of contract claims.

  • Labor Law:

    Workplace conflicts, unfair dismissal, and severance packages.

  • Consumer Law:

    Defective products, misleading advertising, and disputes with service providers.

What Does Mediation Aim to Achieve?

The primary goal of mediation is to facilitate a win-win situation for both parties involved in a dispute. It aims to;

  • Improve communication and understanding between the parties.
  • Identify underlying interests and concerns.
  • Explore creative solutions for a mutually beneficial outcome.
  • Reach a written agreement that is enforceable in court.

When is Mediation Appropriate?

Mediation is a suitable option for many legal disputes, particularly when:

  • Both parties are willing to negotiate and compromise.
  • There’s an open line of communication, or a mediator can help establish one.
  • The dispute involves emotional issues that a court judgment might not address effectively.
  • Parties are interested in preserving a relationship, such as in family or business disputes.

When is Mediation Inappropriate?

While mediation offers numerous benefits, it might not be suitable in every situation. Here are some instances where it might not be the best course of action:

  • Unequal Power Dynamics: If one party has a significant power advantage over the other, mediation might not be fair or effective.
  • Domestic Violence: Mediation is not appropriate in situations involving domestic violence or abuse.
  • Lack of Willingness to Negotiate: If one or both parties are unwilling to compromise or negotiate, mediation is unlikely to be successful.
  • Complex Legal Issues: Disputes with intricate legal issues might be better suited for traditional litigation with legal representation.

Concerns About Using Mediation

Some individuals have concerns about using mediation, such as:

  • Cost: While generally cheaper than litigation, there are still costs associated with mediation, including mediator fees.
  • Confidentiality: While confidentiality is a benefit, it can also limit transparency and raise concerns about fairness.
  • Power Imbalance: As mentioned earlier, a significant power imbalance between parties can hinder a fair mediation process.

How is Mediation Elected?

In Turkey, mediation can be initiated in several ways:

  • Voluntary Agreement: Both parties can voluntarily agree to enter mediation to resolve their dispute.
  • Court-Ordered Mediation: In some cases, the court might order parties to attend mediation before proceeding with litigation.
  • Contractual Clauses: Contracts might include clauses mandating mediation for any disputes arising from the agreement.

Who’s Involved in Mediation?

There are three main parties involved in a mediation process:

  • The Parties: The individuals or entities in conflict who are seeking a resolution through mediation.
  • The Mediator: A neutral third party, trained in facilitation and conflict resolution, who guides the mediation process.
  • Lawyers (Optional): While not mandatory, parties can involve their lawyers in the mediation process to provide legal advice and ensure a fair agreement.

What Happens in a Mediation Session?

  • Individual Meetings: The mediator might hold separate meetings with each party to understand their perspectives and concerns confidentially.
  • Joint Discussions: The mediator facilitates a joint discussion where both parties can express their views and listen to each other’s positions.
  • Brainstorming Solutions: The mediator guides the parties in exploring creative solutions that address their underlying needs and interests.
  • Negotiation and Compromise: Parties engage in facilitated negotiation to reach a mutually agreeable settlement.
  • Reaching an Agreement: If a solution is found, the mediator helps draft a written agreement outlining the terms of the settlement.
  • Closing the Session: The mediator concludes the session by reviewing the agreement and ensuring both parties understand its implications.

How Will Mediators Be Selected?

In Turkey, mediators can be found through various channels:

  • Ministry of Justice ADB Centers: The Ministry of Justice maintains a directory of qualified mediators throughout Turkey.
  • Bar Associations: Bar Associations often have lists of mediation lawyers who are trained and certified mediators.
  • Private Mediation Institutions: There are several private mediation institutions offering mediator selection services.

When choosing a mediator, consider factors like experience, expertise in the specific area of corporate law relevant to your dispute, and their communication style.

How to Prepare for Mediation

To ensure a successful mediation session, here are some steps you can take:

  • Gather Information: Collect relevant documents and information related to your dispute.
  • Identify Your Goals: Clearly define your desired outcome from the mediation process.
  • Consider Alternatives: Think about potential solutions you’d be willing to accept.
  • Maintain an Open Mind: Be prepared to listen to the other party’s perspective and explore options for compromise.
  • Consider Legal Advice: While not mandatory, consulting with a lawyer specializing in your area of dispute can be beneficial.

What Ends a Mediation Session?

A mediation session can end in several ways:

  • Reaching an Agreement: The most successful outcome is when both parties reach a mutually agreeable settlement.
  • Impasse: If an agreement cannot be reached, the parties can choose to continue negotiating or pursue litigation.
  • Withdrawal: Either party has the right to withdraw from mediation at any point during the process.

Mediation Support in Turkey

The Turkish government actively promotes mediation as an alternative dispute resolution method. The Ministry of Justice provides resources and training for mediators, and many courts encourage parties to consider mediation before litigation.

Conclusion

Mediation offers a valuable tool for resolving disputes in Turkey. It’s a faster, more cost- effective, and confidential process compared to traditional litigation. If you’re facing a legal conflict, consider mediation as a viable option to reach a win-win solution.

For further guidance on mediation in Turkey and to explore if it’s the right approach for your specific situation, contact Serka Law’s lawyers. Our team of experienced legal professionals can advise you on your options and help you navigate the mediation process effectively.

Reach out to us to get more information.

FAQ

Mediation is a much faster and more cost-effective alternative to litigation in Turkey. It’s a confidential process where a neutral mediator facilitates communication between parties to reach a solution themselves. In contrast, court proceedings are public, can be lengthy and expensive, and involve a judge imposing a decision.



Yes, if an agreement is reached during mediation, the mediator helps draft a written document outlining the terms. This agreement can be enforced in court if necessary.

Mediation is generally less expensive than litigation. The cost depends on the complexity of the dispute, the mediator’s experience, and the number of sessions required.

Mediation can be significantly faster than court cases. A typical mediation session can last a few hours or a few days, depending on the complexity of the dispute.

Mediators in Turkey can be found through various channels. They are often lawyers trained in facilitation and conflict resolution, but other qualified individuals can also serve as mediators.

While not mandatory, having a lawyer present during mediation can be beneficial. They can provide legal advice and ensure a fair agreement is reached.

If mediation doesn’t result in a settlement, both parties have options. They can choose to continue negotiating on their own, pursue litigation, or attempt mediation again with a different mediator.

Yes, mediation in Turkey is confidential. Discussions during the process are not disclosed publicly, unlike court proceedings. This can be beneficial for maintaining relationships and fostering open communication.

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