Mediation continues to be an ever-growing faction of the legal community with the introduction of more legislation requiring parties to attempt to solve disputes outside of the courtroom. While it is generally accepted that mediation is a confidential process, the rules of confidentiality in Australia and internationally are not so black and white. This paper is broken into four sections to determine why there is a need for confidentiality, when disclosure is required by law and what the general rules of confidentiality are in relation to mediators, mediation, and legal practitioners in Australia as well as an international comparison with the United States of America. Ultimately, through the extrapolation of these topics, it will be shown that while the current rules of confidentiality attempt to equally protect the rights of all parties, this often results in an individual’s access to justice being inhibited.

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