You’ve heard us say that mediation is the highest and best use of a lawyer’s time. But what exactly is mediation? How does it work and why is it such a good use of lawyer’s time?
Mediation is a dispute resolution method outside of court that simplifies the cost and complexity of the litigation process. Both parties agree to meet with a neutral third party who acts as an impartial negotiator. This mediator facilitates discussion between parties and clarifies facts and interests until the parties can come to an agreement.
The mediator is an experienced attorney familiar with the points of law at issue. They have dispute resolution experience with a variety of parties in similar disputes. Mediators are not affiliated with either party and are able to approach a solution with a completely neutral perspective.
Caucus is a common tool used in the mediation procedure. This involves the parties separate and speak only to the mediator who moves between the parties. Caucuses encourage the parties to be open and allow the mediator to better understand the parties’ respective position and interests.
So, Why Mediation?
Mediation is successful 80% of the time and gives disputing parties control over the outcome. These agreements can and should be legally binding . The process allows parties to examine the details and receive an expert opinion to facilitate a fair decision or agreement. Mediations often allow for agreements to be made faster with lower cost.
You’re in Control
In a mediation each party is directly involved in negotiating an agreement rather than being at the will of an arbitrator or judge. Both parties communicate with an expert mediator who advises them and is completely confidential for both sides. At the end of mediation both sides can feel their voice and concerns are heard and come to a solution that is mutually satisfying.
Speed and Price
Litigation often takes up to a year before a final decision is made and can be even longer if the decision is appealed. Litigation can also incur thousands of dollars in attorney’s fees over time. Mediation provides a streamlined and cost-effective alternative to litigation and arbitration.
USA v. Cross Marines Projects
- United States Government filed a lawsuit of over $73 million
- Mediation occurred within four months of complaint
- Mediation was convenient and held on-site
- Mediation settled the dispute for less than .2% of original claim!
- This was a highly successful mediation that saved our client time and millions of dollars!
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