What is the difference between mediation and arbitration?
Mediation involves the submission of a dispute to a third party who tries to assist disputing parties to negotiate a settlement of the dispute. It is not binding until such time as all parties sign a document setting out the terms of the negotiated settlement. In contrast, arbitration is more akin to court proceedings in that it involves a third party/parties adjudication on a dispute with the decision of that third party binding on all concerned.
What are the advantages of mediation and arbitration with SDSI over court proceedings?

Arbitration and Mediation offer the following advantages over court proceedings:-
•    Both are confidential unlike court proceedings which are conducted in public;
•    Less Expensive with fee levels that reflect the resources available to sporting organisations;
•    Quicker with response times to suit the nature of sporting disputes;
•    Less formal than litigation; and
•    Less harmful to relationships than litigation
In addition to the aforementioned advantages, sporting disputes brought to court may be put before a judge who has little or no interest in sport. All SDSI arbitrators and mediators have some interest or knowledge of sport. This specialised knowledge can only be of assistance in the resolution of sporting disputes.

Are all disputes suitable for mediation?
All disputes save those which involve the application of a penalty are suitable for mediation. This is because as generally speaking mediation centers on negotiation and in cases involving the imposition of a penalty the actual penalty does not tend to be negotiable if established that the incident resulting in the penalty occurred. Instead such disputes therefore generally centre on whether or not the incident leading to the application of the penalty took place or not.
Can the decision of a SDSI Arbitration Panel be appealed?

A decision of a SDSI Arbitration Panel may be appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne if the rules of the sporting organisation involved in the appeal allow for such an appeal. Otherwise, the decision handed down by the SDSI Arbitrator is final and binding. Where such an appeal is permissible, the appeal must be lodged within 21 days of the SDSI Arbitration Panel’s decision.

How much does arbitration and mediation with SDSI cost?

It costs €100 to initiate a Mediation with SDSI under the JSI Mediation Rules. The SDSI Arbitration Rules provide that it costs €250 to file a Notice of Appeal.
The total cost of bringing an arbitration and/or mediation is to be decided on a case by case basis to allow costing to reflect the complexity of the case at issue and in particular, the estimated time an arbitration/mediation would require in order to resolve the dispute. A guide of €1,000 per party, per day plus VAT and outlay can however be provided.