Prithvish Rajamani is one of the most sought-after family courts’ mediators in India with a success rate well above the industry average. With over 10 years’ experience and 80+ successful settlement agreements over 18,000 hrs., he has been recognised as one of the leading mediators in Bangalore consecutively for the last 3 years. He also holds the record for the 2nd and 3rd highest settlements in Bangalore Mediation Center. He is accredited with Indian Institute of Arbitration & Mediation, Delhi (IIAM), Asia Pacific Centre for Arbitration & Mediation (APCAM), Standards & Competencies in Mediation Advocacy, London (SCMA) and The State Bar of California which makes him one of the senior most mediation advocates in India. Prithvish is known for his relaxed and approachable manner alongside a keen analytical mind honed over the years which combined with his meticulous preparation, enable him to win the trust and confidence of the participants right from the start of the mediation process. His straight-talking, innovative style has led to resolution of all types of family disputes - from modest claims to complex settlements. As a skilled negotiator, Prithvish understands the psychology of conflict resolution, and is intuitively able to identify both - the barriers to the negotiation and the opportunities for advancing it in the client’s favour. Prithvish offers the participants wider perspectives on the dispute while focusing on their comprehensive interests and of their children whilst remaining tuned in to everyone’s sensitivities. He is highly adaptable in his approach, based on the dynamics at play in each mediation, and is appreciated for his transparency, energy and tenacity. He continues working with the participants over the days following the mediation also so that the momentum towards settlement is never lost.
Host: We have had many Legal professionals on this forum in the past but not very often do we have a Senior Mediation Advocate who promotes Alternate Dispute Resolution to the extent that you do. How did you get into it and please share your journey.
Prithvish: Thank you for having me on this forum and the recognition that has been given to me. I am a single parent and spent a considerable amount of time in court during my own divorce case, almost 7 years. During those years I had always wondered if there were alternatives and that is when I started focussing about Alternative Dispute Resolutions. In the beginning there were not many forums where one could promote it. But with time and the advent of Facebook and WhatsApp it became easier to promote it. What started with 5 members is now over 1450 strong with people from over 12 countries. While many of them still chose to litigate, mediation is definitely picking up and we hope that there will come a time when Litigation will be considered the Alternative to Dispute Resolution with Mediation being the preferred choice.
Host: Why do you think that an Individual should choose Mediation over Litigation?
Prithvish: Mediation is an obvious choice for me because it takes less time, is more cost effective, and causes less stress than litigation. Parties can even receive free court provided mediation. Also, mediation is much less formal than trial tends to be. One has more Control of the Outcome: Parties decide the outcome amongst themselves with the help from the mediator instead of having a judge or jury decide. The Mediator is an Expert in Law: In other words, they can make informed suggestions about the possible solution to the conflict. Creative/Individualized Solutions are arrived at and not typical solutions, and are case specific.
Host: The pandemic saw many courts moving towards virtual proceedings. Is this sustainable, and a possible way to increase access to justice, in your opinion?
Prithvish: Oh, most definitely!! While the pandemic was a forgettable time for many due to its devastating effects, the aftermath has had quite a few positives to take away. One of the biggest is that the legal fraternity just like the corporate world embraced the concept of work from home. This affords the litigants to appear online and thereby saving time and energy of all concerned. Travel to and from the courts is reduced, the crowds in the court halls is reduced and more people were able to attend court hearings. Apart from the obvious benefits another important one is that with the reduced travel of litigants, lawyers and the support staff, the carbon emissions were considerably reduced and this is good for the Green Pledge initiative that the mediation community has committed itself to in support of the fight against global warming.
Host: TRAN is a unique concept; how did you conceive the idea and implement it? Did people take to it? A little about TRAN please?
Prithvish: Well, it is a unique concept even if I do say so myself. I am myself a single parent for the last 16 years and 7 of those years were spent in court for my own case. During this time, I interacted with many others at court during my hearings and found that there was a huge divide between law and the common man and the aim of TRAN is to bridge that gap and empower every litigant with knowledge. The seed of this idea was sowed by my mother when she saw my passion for law and helping people.
About TRAN well it is a Sanskrit word, meaning a safe haven for those single parents who have the wish to move forward with confidence. This initiative brings together like minded single parents who are bringing up their children in spite of the challenges they face. We aim to offer assistance and support to fellow travellers, be it Legal, medical, counselling, parenting advice or just about anything else to enable them to live in a stress-free atmosphere.
Host: Time is money in any profession and in legal it's most of all. How do you ensure to make the best of your time as an Advocate?
Prithvish: I may not entirely agree that Time is money, I prefer to say that Time invested is money. When one spends time with the client and understands their needs and concerns, one can come up with better solutions. If professionals keep looking at the clock and billable hours, he or she may not be able to focus on the issues that need addressing and may land up missing a crucial point.
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