Quadra - Alternative Dispute Resolution

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Quadra operates since 2003 as a private provider of ADR (Alternative Dispute Resolution) services for management of conflicts and commercial and civil disputes

Quadra administers mediation, arbitration and expertise procedures,
promotes diffusion of ADR principles and realises world-class training



Effective Intake. The analysis of statistics concerning the rate of mediations actually held at Quadra, measured against applications received, shows a significant increase in 2015.
'Intake' means the initial phase of mediation case management, starting from receipt of a request for mediation (usually by one of the parties involved) and basically consisting in the activity made by either the center and the mediator aimed to ascertain the requested party/ies' willingness to actually have the case mediated. Volumes of intake are being largely influenced, in Italy, by the fact that a large number of judicial cases must go through a verification test concerning the possibility to mediate (so-called 'mandatory mediation' whereas, indeed, it is mandatory just to attend an information session where the mediator explains the features of the proceedings to the parties, and keeps record of their assent, if any).
Having regard to the requests received January through November 2015, Quadra gets a 36.6% i.e. in one out of three cases a request for mediation stems out in a mediation actually held.
The result is fairly gratifying and shows a positive trend in comparison with previous years (except for the year 2012 that was mainly characterized by voluntary cases only).
If data are compared with those gather at nationwide level (about 1,000 centers, of which 2/3 based on private initiative) one cannot unfortunately draw any precise terms: official data stop to December 2014 and the Ministry still considered a mediation as 'held' even where the parties have attended the first informational meeting only. As it is well known, in such occurrence is not by any means assured that the case goes on. Therefore, one can only speculate and consider that it is common experience that parties DO NOT opt for mediation in a circumstance like that. Anyway, assuming that parties go ahead and mediate in 2 cases out of 3 (to be generous) the results obtained in Quadra turn out to be higher in every year (on average, in the four years 2011-14 in which comparison is possible, Quadra obtain 31% against 21%). The reasons for said discrepancy may be presumably identified in the particular care Quadra applies in the intake. A requested party, for example, is not just impersonally communicated the date set for the first meeting; on the contrary, they are asked if they are available on that date taking into account their previous commitments; ditto, in respect of the venue and the person of the designed mediator. Also, they are regularly provided with a detailed explanation, on the phone and in some cases even in person, about the purpose of the procedure and how the same presumably will be conducted. The main aim is to inform them in the most complete possible way in order to obtain a consent, if any, as much as possible informed and complete. What’s more important, from a 'transformative' point of view, is to give them the sense we respect the principle of self-determination. Parties (particularly the requested ones) are explained that mediation is an opportunity to have a constructive dialogue, that they are the decision-makers and can organize the mediation as they see fit, that the agreement is only one of various possible outcomes, and that the role of the mediator will be to support them, without pushing them towards any particular solution (Quadra applies no increase in fees, in case mediation ends with a settlement - as is usually practiced by other centers on the basis of an unfortunate provision under the decree no. 180/10).

Settlement Rates. The data under scrutiny show a rate of settlements reached in mediation well above the national average. The figure is apparently surprising because the transformative model - practiced by all Quadra mediators - considers the agreement as only one of the possible outcomes of the mediation and certainly NOT the mediator’s ultimate goal. In fact, it may be that this is just the logical consequence of this attitude. in the Quadra procedures, the parties are truly free of any pressures and can actually decide whether, and how, to agreed on shared solutions. Anyway, Quadra certainly do not consider the achievement of a settlement agreement as the yardstick by which to measure the success of a mediation. It is true that decree no. 28/10 and decree no. 180, puts it this way, but it must be considered that the perspective from which such rules move is basically the reduction of judiciary backlog, so it is quite obvious that the settlement of a dispute is positively considered since presumably it will not turn out in an another case filed in court.
On the contrary, what we consider most at Quadra is the degree of satisfaction expressed by participants to mediation sessions in terms of the chances they have been offered to express themselves, to assess the situation, to be heard and be able to talk to the other party. For us, this is what matters most. So we are glad our settlement rate is high, however we area aware that the positive effects of the procedures we administer lay on something different, i.e. the unique possibility for parties facing a conflict situation to be helped to see things more clearly, and to make decisions about that; and the chances to confront themselves, so perhaps to come to understand each other's reasons.

As to the nature of the cases handled by Quadra (all-time data) disputes relating to real estate (condo, leasehold, etc.) rank over 21%. Banking, insurance and / or financial disputes follow at 16.6%; and those relating to banks, insurers or other financial aspects at 11.1%. Matters purely commercial (that fall out of the 'mandatory’ area), debt-recovering in particular rank 8.4%. A similar percentage (7.9%) concerns cases relating to inheritance, divisions and family business; they often lead to real estate issues.

The average face value of disputes handled by Quadra all-time stood at €95,000 and the average fees charged to parties is around € 811 - just under 1%. In 2014-15, Quadra fees are increased a bit, however - due to a reduction in the value of disputes- they rank in absolute terms around €700 (which gives an idea of how convenient is mediation for parties, at least as far as costs are concerned, in comparison with other avenues, and how great is the sacrifice asked for centers in order to come to terms with their budgets - low costs are basically the result of rates authoritatively set by the Ministry).


See Quadra Stats at Nov 30, 2015 in attachment

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