Developments in rural dispute resolution – getting younger surveyors involved

Posted by ChantelleStenner on March 11, 2019

Developments in rural dispute resolution – getting younger surveyors involved

March 11, 2019 at 11:46 AM

The various forms of dispute resolution, especially arbitration, often get a bad press, especially in the rural sector where arbitration in particular is seen as risky, expensive and slow.

Whilst some of these criticisms may be valid, Shropshire land agent and rural arbitrator Philip Meade of Davis Meade Property Consultants saysa lot of work has been done over the last two or three years to change this.

There are currently about 25 rural arbitrators on the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS ) President’s panel, compared to about 80 a decade ago and 150 20 years ago, and there is a need for more younger surveyors to get involved.

Writing in the RICS Land Journal Philip said: “The RICS Dispute Resolution Service (DRS) has worked hard over the last decade or so to raise the standards and training of rural arbitrators and in conjunction with Rural Arbrix, which is essentially a branch of main Arbrix and a networking/CPD “club” for arbitrators, a lot has changed.

“The DRS has also set up a working party with the principle aim of raising and maintaining standards.The combined intention of these groups is to simplify, where appropriate, the arbitration process, reduce the costs and risks and make the whole process more accessible and user friendly.”

As well as updating professional statements on matters such as acting as advocates or expert witnesses or conflicts of interest in dispute resolution, practical guidance on the nature and process of rural arbitration has also been written with input from the working group. All of these are available through the RICS.

“Although there is a regulatory element to these documents, one of the main aims is to be informative and helpful about what is seen as best practice and to inform about the processes involved in arbitration,” said Philip.

“It is also felt that, if rural arbitration is to become more readily seen as an appropriate way to deal with disputes, it is crucial to ensure that it is easily accessible to the average surveyor and not just the domain of lawyers and barristers.

“If younger surveyors can be encouraged to participate, that in turn is likely to lead to rural arbitration becoming more cost effective and efficient.”

Rural Arbrix also try to play a significant role in demystifying the whole process by introducing those interested in rural arbitration to not only the process itself through CPD events held twice a year (Spring conference and AGM), but also by introducing them to the arbitrators themselves, nearly all of whom attend either one or both events.

Anyone interested in learning more about rural arbitration can download the various professional statements and guidance notes relating to dispute resolution from the RICS at:

“Whilst only arbitrators on the President’s panel can become members of Rural Arbrix, members can invite guests who are interested in attending the AGM and conference. Guests usually need to be rural chartered surveyors with at least 10 years post qualification experience and an interest or background in rural disputes,” Philip said.

Anyone interested should ask an arbitrator they know for an invitation or contact Philip at the Oswestry office of DMPC on telephone 01691 659658 email



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Philip Meade has been invited to provide seminars for national training company on rural arbitrations - Date: 11th February 2019 Time: 9.30 to 5.15 Venue: London - For more information please click this link: Rural Arbitrations - An A to Z in One Day


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