Contents


BC Human Rights Tribunal

How to Settle on Your Own

The Tribunal offers settlement meeting services at any time during the complaint process. Some parties also settle on their own. This information sheet helps with how to settle a complaint on your own.

Consider if you want to try to settle the complaint on your own

Do you feel comfortable contacting the other party or their representative? If not, you can choose to wait for a settlement meeting where a Tribunal mediator will assist the parties.

Prepare

Consider the terms of settlement

  1. Settlement often requires the complainant to agree not to pursue other claims against the respondent arising from the same facts. This is called a “release”.
  2. In exchange for the complainant bringing the complaint to an end and “releasing” the respondent from other claims, the respondent agrees to take certain steps.
  3. Settlement is often confidential. In some cases the parties might agree that some or all of the settlement may be made public.
  4. Settlement requires the complaint to come to an end. Usually the complainant agrees to file a Form 6 – Complaint Withdrawal after the respondent has taken certain steps.

Contact the other party

  • Consider whether you want to try to settle in person, by phone, or in writing.
  • Consider whether you want the settlement discussions to be confidential and “without prejudice” (so that the discussions and offers exchanged cannot be used in the Tribunal’s decision-making process if you do not settle). If you do, write “without prejudice” on the top of your letter, or tell the other party you would like to discuss settlement on a confidential basis.

Understand the settlement process

  • There will usually be some negotiation before both parties agree to settle the complaint. In general, no one gets a “perfect” solution, but everyone gets a solution they feel is acceptable.
  • If you reach a settlement, you can put the terms in writing and sign the agreement. See the sample agreements.
  • If you do not settle the complaint now, there will be other chances later. This may not have been the right time for one or both parties. Consider asking your case manager to set up a settlement meeting with a Tribunal mediator.