The mediation will take place at a phone conference. You will be able to talk to the mediator and the rental provider, or their agent, and ask questions. You will also be able to talk privately with the mediator, if needed. The conference can be put on hold to give you time to consider any offers to resolve the dispute before deciding whether to accept or reject them.
To prepare for the mediation, make a few brief notes outlining what you want to say and get all your evidence together, including a copy of the VCAT application that sets out what the dispute is about. You will not be asked to present evidence at the mediation, but you may want to refer to your evidence and documents during the process. Being organised will help you with the mediation process.
If agreement is reached
If an agreement is reached, the mediator will help you and the rental provider, or their agent, put the agreement in writing, including agreed actions and timeframes, and will email out a copy to everyone.
The mediator will also inform VCAT. Then VCAT will make an order striking out the VCAT application.
However, the order will include a ‘right of reinstatement’, which gives you the option to ask VCAT to reopen the dispute if needed. For example, if you or the rental provider do not follow the terms of the agreement then the dispute can be reopened to be heard by VCAT.