QUICK FACTS

93

PERCENT


OF MEDIATION CASES RESOLVE SUCCESSFULLY

MEDIATION

Family arguments and disputes often occur over wills or divorce and very often a lot of money, properties, assets are involved in between parties which rises tension between those included in the will or counter parties of the divorce. Speaking about the inheritance, the distribution of the inherited wealth is often unequal (or seems to be unequal in the eyes of some of family members). The majority might receive little or next to nothing while only a small number inherit a larger amount, with the lesser amount given to the rest in the family. For example, the amount of inheritance is often far less than the value of a business initially given to one of the siblings, especially when he/she takes over a thriving multimillion-dollar business, yet the other sibling is given the balance of the actual inheritance amounting to far less than the value of business that was initially given to the first sibling. This is especially seen in older world cultures, but continues in many families and countries to this day. Disputes fuelled by strong emotions and inability to see other party’s point of view can often end up reaching court and break families apart. The costs of a court case very often have to be paid from the estate itself; greatly diminishing its value and those courts proceedings can sometimes last few years to reach resolution which unfortunately is not even guaranteed to satisfy you. Same goes for divorce when husband and wife have a lot of common assets and separating them equally is very complicated and long process, especially because it’s often fuelled by negative emotions of frustration caused by betrayal. In all kind of situations which have a dispute about money or assets as a core of the problem you can count on our professional help. We are experts in finding the best solution. Find out more about how mediation could be the best way for you to save your time, money and health.

 

Mediation is a process for resolving disputes by which an independent mediator assists the parties in reaching a mutually satisfactory settlement. It is an extension of the parties own negotiations and is sometimes referred to as a “supercharged negotiation.” The mediation process is entirely voluntary and non-binding. The mediator has no power to render a decision or to force the parties to accept a settlement. Rather, the mediator’s role is to assist the parties in their negotiations by identifying obstacles to settlement and developing strategies for overcoming them. A mediation session is 100% private and confidential. It is normally held in a private office or meeting room and no public record is made of the proceedings contrary to the court proceedings. If no settlement is reached any statements during the proceedings are inadmissible as evidence in any subsequent litigation which makes it perfect way to go to settle for a mutual agreement. Following the joint meeting, the mediator will usually separate the parties and begin meeting with them in a series of private, confidential meetings called “caucuses”. In these caucuses, the mediator works with each of the parties to analyze their case and develop options for settlement. Normally, the mediator will caucus numerous times with both sides until the case either settles or it becomes apparent that settlement will not be reached. You will find more detailed information about mediation process below in step by step guide. Mediation is different from arbitration in that the mediator does not render a decision. Instead, mediation allows the parties to make their own decisions and fashion their own settlement in a way that satisfies everyone involved. The mediator generally doesn’t make recommendations but rather, allows the parties to make their own decisions based on a realistic analysis of their case. Statistics shows mediations works in settling over 85% of the cases in which it is utilized, including those where the parties have been unable or unwilling to negotiate, or have taken unrealistic or intransigent positions from the beginning but through the process found a way to settle for mutual agreement anyway.

 

We understand that, of course, that dealing with the death of a loved one is already difficult enough, but the situation can become even more difficult when the will is produced and doesn’t reflect what you or someone else in the family thought they would receive. There may be multiple causes for this to happen. Maybe the deceased promised to pass onto you a particular family asset, but the will gives it to someone else and it creates confusion, or maybe the person changed their will shortly before they died and you suspect foul play or person to influence that decision. A probate court battle can be a messy, public affair that destroys family relationships – not to mention the time and expense involved that could be extremely detrimental. This kind of conflict can do serious damage to all family members and split families apart for long time if not forever. Family wars are very common everywhere in the world and wills are the main cause of it. To avoid that – mediation is the best option for everyone involved. Mediation is a less formal, private way to solve inheritance and divorce disputes and retain some semblance of peace and acceptance between the parties. Below you will find multiple benefits of mediation versus court proceedings. Read it carefully and you will understand

 

Most people are interested in making things as fair as possible among family members. But parents and kids can have different perspectives on what is fair. For instance, the parents might think it makes sense to leave the cottage to all three kids, while the child who uses it most might think they should get a larger portion of it. Likewise, children can be upset if their parents decide to hold one child’s money in a trust and leave another chunk of cash outright. When parents die, the balance of power within a family changes. In some cases, deep-seated resentments surface and people question the motives of other family members. If one person’s spouse ends up having influence over the process or if there is a sense that the executor is favoring one person, that can disrupt the family dynamic for quiet long time. Concerns about whether things are being done in everyone’s best interest and whether someone is benefiting more than the others are the most common ways that trust breaks down and the bickering begins. Another scenario is a choice of unpopular executor. Most often but not always, the executor is a member of the family. Parents tend to see it as a position of honor, so they choose the oldest child or the one that has the right professional designation. But other family members can feel that it was given to the wrong person, that their parents didn’t trust them to do it and that they are excluded from the process or not taken seriously. All of these feelings can lead to resentment. Although executors can claim monetary compensation, this is generally not the reason that families fight. A good executor is someone with the time, desire and ability to deal with the time-consuming process of administering an estate. Some parents looking for an impartial executor opt to hire a trust company. Also more and more often we encounter cases where deceased have had properties and enterprises in multiple countries internationally and in this cases it is extremely difficult and challenging for family members to come to the agreement without mediation. We come in play here and based on our expertise and solid reputation help you deal with the situation in the best possible way and manner to minimize costs, find compromise and make parties sign an agreement without wasting their time and energy in local and international courts which could be very long, confusing and unpleasant process.

 

Some cases are more complicated than others. For example, arguments for eliminating the disparagement of inheritance inequality include the right to property and the merit of individual allocation of capital over government wealth confiscation and redistribution, but this does not resolve the problem of unequal inheritance. In terms of inheritance inequality, some economists and sociologists focus on the inter-generational transmission of income or wealth which is said to have a direct impact on one’s mobility (or immobility) and class position in society. Nations differ on the political structure and policy options that govern the transfer of wealth. And it’s extremely important to know all the differences in jurisdiction of different countries to put all the procedures together in the right manner. You can count on our expertise and years of experience in the field, on our solid reputation in helping you solve your inheritance or divorce dispute and help you through the process of mediation with the rest of the family members. Very often these days we see situations where family inherits multiple properties and funds internationally, in different countries and it becomes very confusing what is the best way to take to make sure the passing of the property and funds is done correctly in accordance to the local and international law. That’s where we come in play and you can count on us, even in most challenging and difficult situations. We are here for you, so please don’t hesitate to contact us to discuss the details with one of our specialists. Mediating a case before a lawsuit is filed enables the parties to present their case to a mutually selected neutral person (or in some cases two persons as co-mediators) before any money is spent on litigation. Many times the simple process of telling one’s story to a neutral willing to listen will take the parties a long way toward settlement. The cost of mediating a case is minimal compared to the costs incurred through the life of a lawsuit.

 

There could be few reasons that can complicate the passing of the inheritance from deceased family member to you, and here are few of them:

 

Questions about Your Identity

Troubles with identity are very common problem in passing of inheritance on the international level. The identity could be questioned if the person that inherits is illegitimate child or a distant relative for example. If he or she lives in a different country it complicates things even more because everything has to be done in accordance with local and international law. Even if the deceased left specific orders to pass property to this person, very often other family disregards those orders and acts disregarding your identity which could be very challenging and frustrating at the same time. We have experience in these types of situations and can gladly help you.

 

Trouble with Illegal Settlers on Your Property.

If there are people that live on your property they cannot be simply removed, it has to be done in accordance with the local law and it’s not always all that easy, sometimes it could be very time consuming. We can help you mediate the situation with people that live at your property or their representatives to make sure you get it transferred as soon as possible.

 

Problems with Taxation.

Taxes apply to every aspect of inheritance in almost all countries around the world. There are also special taxes that apply to gifts as well as estate taxes. You may be headed for a long and costly battle for your inheritance if you are unaware of these payments. It is important to learn all about these in advance along with how to claim your inheritance in the most stress-free and timely manner. We can definitely help you find out all about local and international taxes that might apply in the questioned transfer and will suggest you the best ways to minimize your expenses. We can l help you find the best solution for you, don’t hesitate to contact us and discuss your situation with our professional dedicated and experienced team, we are here to help you with all the details about international estate and inheritance tax worries, etc. So never delay to seek advice; get the right solution and claim what is rightfully yours.

 

Differences in applicable succession laws.

For example, for foreigners who live in the Netherlands and for Dutch people who live abroad but have assets in the Netherlands it is uncertain which succession law is applicable. Just because you live in the Netherlands you should not assume that automatically the Dutch law of succession is applicable to your estate. Nor should you take for granted that your assets abroad will be subject to the law of succession of your nationality. Whether the succession to your estate is regulated by country in question law or the laws of succession of another country is determined by the rules of private international law. Each country has its own rules of private international law. For example, In the Netherlands the Dutch authorities will apply the Dutch rules of private international law (irrespective of your own nationality), but in Switzerland or Morocco, the rules of Swiss and Moroccan private international law are applied (once again irrespective of your nationality). The application of different rules of international private law can lead to different, sometimes contradictory results. We provide all the information you need regarding the applicable law in the case of a cross-border succession. Will the laws of the country whose nationality the deceased possessed apply? Or will the succession be governed by the laws of the country in which the deceased habitually resided? Is it possible to choose the law applicable to your succession? For cross-border successions, we provide all the necessary explanations concerning conflicts of laws rules. Our lawyers and attorneys have extended experience in dealing with such cases in multiple European and post-USSR countries; know differences between jurisprudences and how to apply the law in the best advantage for our client. As world’s population becomes ever more global, a new kind of problem has emerged for estate planners and financial advisers. The laws are often straightforward on what needs to be done, with a proper will and an executor being at the top of the list. But when one or more other countries come into play – as is so often the case with immigrants – the rules of the game become increasingly muddled. It’s a scenario that financial advisers are seeing more of as the population expands and diversifies. Navigating these complex situations is a growing job for advisers. And that’s where we can help you untwist the most difficult and challenging situations in your favor and save you tons of money time and stress.

 

Mediating inheritance disputes.

. In a contested estate matter, emotions can run incredibly high. Some family relationships may be tested and even destroyed. Mediation between family members is a better and safer way to take and provide families with peace and security for the future. We can help minimize these conflicts in a less financially draining and emotionally destructive manner. When estate claims are resolved sooner, families will have spent fewer financial and emotional resources on the conflict. When it comes to sorting out an estate many families get into a long-term dispute. We can help to resolve these disputes with mediation and negotiation. In our experience, estate, will and divorce disputes almost always resolve in mediation (85% of cases). It is an efficient and effective alternative to estate litigation, and most importantly can lead to a positive outcome with continuing relationships for the future. A few words about the words “conflict management”. The traditional description of modern alternatives to litigation is “alternative dispute resolution”. Over the years attorneys and mediators have learned that some disputes cannot be resolved. However they can be managed. A more practical description of alternatives to litigation in the context of estates conflicts is “conflict management” as opposed to “conflict resolution”. Divorce mediation is where you and your spouse, together with a mediator, discuss the issues involved in your separation or divorce. These include: parenting issues, financial support and property division in order to reach a resolution of these issues. We help you work towards a reasonable solution. Mediation is both cost effective and time efficient, disputes can be settled quickly, and the dispute remains private. On the other hand, divorce in the court system is public domain. Anybody can sit in court and hear the specifics of your divorce and its outcome. On the other hand, mediation is confidential, private and conducted behind closed doors. In mediation, there are no attorneys putting up walls between you and your spouse. Mediation is about working together, doing things in the best interests of your children and focusing on being able to be parents for your children for years to come. Unfortunately, divorce in the court system is designed to put up that wall and limit communication, which inevitably leads to many post divorce problems and traumas and many more hours and thousands of dollars in court. Mediation will give you that chance – and you are the best person to speak about your life and your needs. No expert knows your life as well as you and your spouse do. In truth, no hired expert will care as much as you do – because only you and your family will live with the agreement you make and the consequences of it. You are the people who are in the best position to decide what should happen with your family, your possessions, and with your divorce, why would you let someone else (judge that doesn’t know you that well and doesn’t have time to get to know you) decide for you and take the decision that will affect you for the rest of your life? Since mediation is a voluntary process, everyone involved in the dispute must be willing to come together and use mediation as a means to resolve the inheritance dispute. So the only thing is finding the right way to convince the other party to participate in the mediation process with you.

 

Benefits of mediation.

  1. Privacy: Mediation is a way to keep things private and confidential rather than potentially airing the family’s dirty laundry in a protracted and public legal battle in court. Mediation happens behind closed doors with family members involved and mediator. No one else is allowed to influence the outcome.
  2. Family relations: mediation also can help preserve the peace in the family and smooth the way toward more respectful and honest relationships because the process is voluntary and collaborative, not adversarial and not imposed unless is agreed to by both parties. The dispute of today doesn’t have to destroy the family of tomorrow. The family wars don’t have to begin out of the dispute over estate or money. Family relations must be more important than any temporary misunderstanding.
  3. Comfort: Mediation is considerably more laid back and relaxed process than a courtroom trial, but you’ll still want to have a decent outline of your position on the issues, evidence to back up your points, and a clear understanding of how you want the dispute resolved.
  4. Empowerement: It provides a neutral forum for everyone to air their views freely and openly without the pressure in two steps, first with the other party present in the room and second behind closed doors with the mediator.
  5. Quality of settlement: The mediator can’t impose a decision on you – giving you the chance to reach a mutual agreement that will be beneficial to both parties. No one decides here for you. The settlement you agree on in the end is the product of compromise, understanding and willingness to negotiate with everyone involved. You don’t have to settle for anything if it doesn’t satisfy you.
  6. Cost effective: Mediation is an inexpensive alternative to costly court proceedings – leaving the estate intact. Very often the price of the court proceedings is so high that family has to sell the estate to pay for those fees.
  7. Control: The outcome is up to you – no one can tell you what’s right or wrong. You have definitely more control over the situation then in court.
  8. Speed: Mediation can be arranged within weeks rather than months or years of court proceedings.

As you can see there are multiple advantages and benefits to mediation versus litigation. These are the most important points. Don`t hesitate to contact us to resolve your dispute with out going through long court procedures, we will gladly help.