What is financial mediation?
Mediation is a form of conflict resolution where an independent and impartial mediator helps the involved parties reach a solution together. BrightOrange specializes in financial mediation, where we assist parties in conflicts (or prevention of conflicts) over the economic value or price of a business. This can arise in situations such as the distribution of shareholder interests and divorces. The aim is to reach a solution together, so that legal action can be avoided.
Financial mediation as an alternative to costly expert report
In financial conflicts, a judge often appoints a valuation expert to write an expert report on the economic value or price of a business. Such a report is expensive and time-consuming. Therefore, BrightOrange has developed a method where expert investigations are not necessary in most cases – mediation. We combine our valuation expertise with conflict resolution. Mediation is more efficient and the costs are only a fraction of those for an expert report.
Our partners are both mediators and Registered Valuators, a unique combination that enables us to guide the mediation process effectively.
Financial mediation: even without conflict
It is a misconception that you must have a conflict to engage in financial mediation. In fact, at BrightOrange, we often use this method to prevent conflicts from arising. Consider two shareholders who are parting ways. One shareholder needs to offer their shares to the other, but they often find it difficult to name a price. This can result in them appointing an expert to determine the value of the shares through a statutory expert investigation, which can cost up to €10,000. Mediation can prevent this by enabling the parties to talk and negotiate about the value and price. Thanks to our valuation expertise, we can guide and monitor the process.
Benefits of mediation at BrightOrange
Under the guidance of our mediator, most parties reach a resolution within two to four sessions. And just as important, the outcome is a decision made by both parties and not a judge.
- Faster, cheaper, and less stressful than court procedures.
- 90% reach a resolution within two to four sessions.
- Alternative to expensive statutory expert reports.
- Parties have a great deal of influence over the process, costs, and outcome.
- An experienced valuation expert monitors and guides the process.
- You can enlist your own party advisor to assist you.
BrightOrange mediation specializations
We always begin with an introductory meeting with both parties, which is non-binding. Our mediator forms a general idea of the situation and explains the mediation process and the associated rules and expectations.
Our mediator requests the necessary information and documents from the parties. He analyses this information to prepare for the mediation process. He also creates a mediation agreement that both parties must sign during the first meeting, which includes rules, confidentiality, and the obligation to make an effort. If a party is assisted by a party expert, they must also sign a confidentiality agreement.
Our mediator takes an independent, impartial, and leading role during mediation conversations. Various possible solutions are explored and discussed. Our mediator ensures that communication flows smoothly and asks critical questions, including to any party expert. This ensures that the parties come to an agreement together that satisfies everyone.
Once both parties have reached a solution, the agreements are recorded in a settlement agreement. This agreement is legally binding and enforceable. If desired, a notary can use this agreement as a title of ownership.
Co-mediator for other conflicts
The financial aspect of the case is our specialty. Many issues involve more than just the value of a business. Especially in divorces, there is a need for a mediator who is competent in other areas as well. In those situations, our mediators prefer to play a role as a co-mediator. Our mediators then support the mediation process led by another mediator.
Forensic mediation for courts and tribunals
As discussed above, our mediators always give the parties involved the opportunity to come to a (partial) solution themselves. If a conflict goes to court or tribunal, our mediators work according to forensic mediation. This is a combination of conflict resolution and expert investigation. Our mediators are experts in valuations and experienced mediators. From these qualities, they can provide the judge with the information needed to make a judicial decision.
Why engage BrightOrange as a mediator?
At BrightOrange, we have years of experience in guiding mediation processes. Our human and personal approach is paramount in this. We work independently and impartially and take the time to understand both positions well. Because of our expertise in valuations, we can help parties avoid major mistakes but also serve as a question bank.
- At BrightOrange, we work with Mfn-mediators, forensic mediators, and Registered Valuators. This allows us to combine our expertise in business value with conflict resolution.
- 90% of our clients reach a successful resolution in a maximum of 4 sessions.
- Personal approach.
Frequently Asked Questions about financial mediation
When is financial mediation useful?
Financial mediation is useful when parties have difficulty reaching an agreement on a financial matter, such as the value of a business. It is important that both parties are willing to come to a compromise together. They must have the motivation to keep the solution in their own hands, without going to court or hiring an expensive expert.
How long does the financial mediation process typically take?
At BrightOrange, we have found that our mediation processes are efficient and fast. On average, our parties come to a joint solution within two to four sessions.
Is financial mediation binding?
When the parties have reached a solution, these agreements are recorded in a settlement agreement. This agreement is legally binding and enforceable.
Is financial mediation mandatory?
No, participation in financial mediation is voluntary. Both parties do, however, sign a commitment to make an effort. They declare that they will actively work towards finding a solution, but reaching a solution is not mandatory. Either party can withdraw from mediation at any time.
What about privacy and confidentiality during financial mediation?
During the mediation process, confidential and sensitive information is shared. All information remains confidential. For this purpose, the parties and their possible expert advisers sign a mediation statement beforehand. This statement also ensures that oral agreements cannot be brought up in a later court proceeding. The (interim) agreements are only valid if they are recorded in writing and signed.
What if financial mediation fails?
If financial mediation fails, you can start a judicial procedure. It is worth noting that the outcome of the mediation process depends on the willingness of both parties to reach a solution. If one of the parties is unwilling to cooperate or compromise, it may be better to consider a different approach.
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“Many entrepreneurs see their business as a ‘life’s work’. Making the decision to sell it, they often only take it once or twice. I really enjoy guiding these entrepreneurs through this process. I really enjoy the variety of assignments, businesses and entrepreneurs we help. And especially the combination of the financial and human aspect.”
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