The scheme will be run jointly with the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution, and is aimed at giving IPA members a chance to resolve insolvency-related commercial disputes at a fraction of the costs of going to court or hiring outside consultants.
The voluntary and private scheme will bring disputing parties together in order to reach an agreement with the help of CEDR mediators, many of whom are retired insolvency practitioners.
IPA president Keith Goodman said: ‘Looking at it from an IPs point of view, if I thought mediation would prevent me spending creditors’ money I would go for mediation.
‘If I can maximise dividend by not spending money on a court case I would obviously do it. No one really wants to go to court, it’s expensive, there’s a winner and a loser.’
He explained the scheme had been set up at no cost to IPA members with money from a grant, adding he hoped members would use it ‘as a first resort rather than a last resort.’
‘The idea started about 18 months ago hatched during the last presidency and former president Colin Bird is the architect of the scheme.’
The scheme helps obey court procedures implemented after the Woolf reforms by saying that every effort should be made to attempt to resolve disputes before going to court.
It promises to provide a speed and flexibility currently not available in ordinary court processes and applies to contract claims and recoveries, matrimonial home claims, employment disputes, the sales of assets and creditor claims.