In Mauritius, the legal landscape is increasingly embracing alternative dispute resolution (ADR) mechanisms, such as mediation and arbitration, to handle conflicts more efficiently and amicably. Mediators and arbitrators play pivotal roles in this process, offering parties a way to resolve disputes without the need for lengthy and costly court battles. Understanding the functions and benefits of these roles provides insight into their growing importance in the Mauritian legal system.

Mediation: Facilitating Mutual Agreements

Mediation is a voluntary and confidential process where a neutral third party, the mediator, assists disputing parties in reaching a mutually acceptable agreement. The mediator does not impose a decision but facilitates communication and negotiation, helping parties understand each other’s perspectives and explore potential solutions.

In Mauritius, mediators are trained professionals who possess strong interpersonal and problem-solving skills. They come from diverse backgrounds, including law, psychology, and business, bringing a wide range of expertise to the table. The mediator’s role is to create a conducive environment for dialogue, encourage cooperative problem-solving, and guide parties toward a resolution that satisfies both sides.

One of the significant advantages of mediation is its flexibility. The process is informal and can be tailored to the specific needs of the parties involved. Mediation can often resolve disputes more quickly than traditional litigation, saving time and resources. Additionally, it helps preserve relationships by fostering a spirit of cooperation and understanding.

Arbitration: A Binding Resolution

Arbitration, on the other hand, is a more formal ADR process where disputing parties agree to submit their conflict to one or more arbitrators, who then make a binding decision. This process is similar to a court proceeding but generally more flexible and less formal. Arbitrators are often experts in the relevant field of the dispute, ensuring informed and fair decisions.

In Mauritius, arbitration is governed by the Arbitration Act, which provides a legal framework for conducting arbitration proceedings. Arbitrators must adhere to principles of fairness and impartiality, and their decisions, known as awards, are enforceable in court. This binding nature of arbitration makes it a popular choice for commercial disputes, where parties seek a definitive resolution without the uncertainty of prolonged litigation.

The Benefits of ADR in Mauritius

The use of mediation and arbitration in Mauritius offers several benefits. ADR processes are typically faster and more cost-effective than court cases, reducing the burden on the judicial system. They also provide a private forum for resolving disputes, which is particularly valuable in sensitive or high-stakes matters where confidentiality is crucial.

Furthermore, ADR promotes a less adversarial approach to conflict resolution. By focusing on collaboration and mutual benefit, mediation and arbitration can help maintain business relationships and personal connections that might otherwise be damaged by contentious litigation.


Mediators and arbitrators in Mauritius are essential to the modern legal framework, providing efficient, flexible, and effective methods for resolving disputes. Their roles support the principles of justice while offering alternatives to traditional court proceedings, ultimately contributing to a more harmonious and functional society. As awareness and appreciation of ADR continue to grow, mediators and arbitrators will undoubtedly remain central figures in the Mauritian legal landscape, helping parties find resolutions that respect their needs and foster lasting agreements.