Monday, February 07, 2005

The Melody Lingers On – GM & Fiat Mediate and More!

I've been training since Wednesday - that's why I haven't posted toward the end of last week. Now, I'm back!

General Motors Corporation and Fiat engaged in mediation to settle a dispute over whether Fiat can sell its money losing car division to GM. In 2000 the two entities incorporated the following mediation clause into Section 10.08 of their Master Agreement:

In the event of a dispute arising out of or in connection with this Agreement, prior to the exercise of any other remedies hereunder or at law, the party hereto seeking a remedy against the other party shall request that the dispute be submitted to the chief executive officers of the two parties by notice to such effect to the other party. The chief executive officers of both parties shall meet within 20 business days of such notice in a neutral setting in person to attempt in good faith to resolve such matter. In the event that they have been unable to resolve such matter within 10 business days after their meeting, either party may seek the legal remedies entitled to them hereunder or at law.

Although the mediation did not result in an agreement between the two, it certainly set the stage for the continuing negotiations without a dash to the courthouse according to this article in This is a good example why mediators should encourage the parties, even after impasse, to continue to negotiate and leave them with a positive note at the end of mediation.

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