There’s little to enjoy about a court case, unless you happen to be on the receiving end of a large settlement–or working with a good mediator, ultimately. For many civilians though, enduring litigation can be long, stressful, and expensive. There may be emotional ties between the disputing parties in some cases, and the experience can be intense. Because there are numerous disadvantages to being in the courtroom, you and the party you are in a dispute with may have been able to decide on one thing—and that’s mediation. Other times it may not be optional, and the judge may have referred you to alternative dispute resolution, and with good reason.
In mediation, you can look forward to a different atmosphere from the courtroom. This is usually obvious from the beginning as scheduling is much more flexible; in fact, mediators are used to dealing with clients who have busy schedules, especially business owners, and they may even be able to mediate on weeknights or weekends. A good mediator takes time to research the case, and this often differentiates from the court case also as the mediator can take more time and speak with everyone before the process starts. In being fully apprised of the case details, the mediator will be better equipped to guide everyone in reaching an agreement. And ‘guide’ is the key word, as that is what they are there to do, rather than decide.
Alternative dispute resolution (ADR), and especially mediation, is usually successful, but much of it depends on the motivation of the disputing parties to resolve the issue and bring the process to a conclusion, as well as the skill of the mediator. While a law degree is not required for mediator, they are often retired legal professionals or may have extensive experience in the field of the business owners in dispute. If a stalemate or an impasse is reached, the mediator must rally everyone to think outside the box for different ways to find a resolution, even though they may seem (or feel) close to giving up.
This may be the time for the mediator to begin asking more questions, along with digging deep for what other concessions each party might be willing to make. Taking a brief time out, and then seeking more information along with further understanding what is motivating each party can be extremely enlightening. Offers and counteroffers are often brought to the table more quickly when disputing parties can understand each other better and loosen up enough to compromise further.
The Bolender Law Firm will advocate on behalf of clients through litigation, arbitration, or non-binding mediation. Our attorneys are experienced in representing clients in state and federal courts, at both the trial and appellate level. Call us at 310-320-0725 now or submit an easy consultation request online. We are here to help!