Ep 10 – Mediation


Professional mediator, Tim McFarlane talks about the alternative of settling out of court in mediation. Kimi Nishimura worked on the Kilmore East Kinglake Black Saturday bushfire case that settled out of court, she talks about why they decided to do that.


Lizzie O’Shea points out that trials are uncertain events and even those with a big chance of winning can lose. She introduces the idea of mediation, where the focus is on settling out of court.

Professional mediator, Tim McFarlane, talks about how verdicts don’t always go the way of the client. Sometimes the courts do not deliver fairness, or justice. He talks about why the clients should choose to compromise instead, by choosing mediation. Mediation is also cost effective and reduces the stress of a trial. He goes on to explain how cases heard in a trial can resolve part of the matter in court and send part of the matter to mediation.

Lizzie O’Shea introduces the Kilmore East Kinglake Black Saturday bushfire case. At the time it was the biggest out-of-court settlement. She tells the story of the key plaintiff, Carol Matthews.

Kimi Nishimura, who worked on the bushfire case, talks about why they settled out of court. Advantages included certainty of the result, and also not needing to go through a series of costly appeals.

Lizzie wraps up the episode and the series, reminding us of the strength and changing nature of our law.

Curriculum Areas

Years 11/12 Legal Studies
Unit 2: Sanctions, remedies and rights, Area of study 2, Remedies.

Stage 1 – Topic 4: Justice and Society, Should alternative dispute resolution be promoted?
Stage 2 – Topic 4: Justice Systems, alternative dispute resolution

Core area of study: Introduction to civil obligations, How are disputes resolved?

3. Dispute resolution Processes, Alternative dispute resolution processes

Introduction to Legal Systems

Useful links