Mediation: Garage Dispute case study
- A Hampshire based garage brought a claim for £7,287 in respect of unpaid invoices for servicing and repairs carried out to the defendants fleet of camper vans. The two companies had a long standing commercial relationship for many years.
- The defendants claim that the invoices raised were incorrect as some work carried out was not satisfactory and the claimant had been notified and agreed to credit part of the invoices, which they had not. The parties were at odds with each other as to the exact amount owing as they each used a different accounting system, with credit notes being offset against different invoices.
- The costs of the litigation outweighed what both parties were claiming; but neither party would back down, as they both felt that they were right! It was established through mediation that financial liquidity issues were really fuelling this dispute, the claimants had overcharged and not credited the invoices they had agreed, the counterclaim was inflated, although it did have substance and there had been some errors in the accounting system used by the defendants which had inflated their counter claim.
- The personal issues were addressed, which posed some difficult questions and conversations, however once these issues were identified, and dealt with, negotiations got under way swiftly leading to a solution that both parties were agreeable to, as well as the parties leaving with a new understanding for their continued working relationship.
Facts & figures
- The mediation took 6 hours compared to the six months this dispute had already gone on.
- The mediation cost each party £550.00 each compared to the hundreds they had already spent on legal fee and the thousands they would have to spend had they continued with Court action.