The business world can be extremely rewarding, but also harsh. As the owner of a company—whether it is large or small—your responsibilities may be vast. There may a substantial number of employees, requiring formal policies and procedures to be followed, and support from human resources. Finances and accounting play a major role. Orders must be made, suppliers must be paid. Most days are full of small triumphs, and sometimes massive headaches. Above all though, customers must keep rolling in the door!
For those involved in new startups, there is little time for anything else except work, which makes life especially challenging in the face of a legal dispute. This can be even more devastating if it comes from within the company due to an employee or a partner’s dissatisfaction, or from another business, vendor, or even a client. Entering into a hostile courtroom scene with litigation may seem like an extremely unpleasant venture as well as an unnecessary one in many cases—and because of this, many who discover mediation as an option are pleasantly surprised.
When both parties agree on mediation, it is obvious they want resolution, and often this is because of a partnership or a working relationship that has been long-standing and valuable, and is one that everyone wants to attempt to preserve. It may also be true that the relationship was an extremely profitable one over the years, and no one wants to see a financial loss (not to mention the expenses of litigation).
The key to mediation is neutrality on the part of the mediator leading the sessions, and success is usually due to the relaxed atmosphere, affording greater flexibility in scheduling, and allowing the two parties in dispute to reach a settlement decision themselves. As an act of good faith, and to get off on a friendlier foot, one party will offer the other the chance to choose the mediator. They may want to have interviews with several mediators and although there could be some disagreement if the mediator chosen seems inappropriate, allowing the other party to have control initially is a good way to start.
Although the mediator may be an expert in the field in which the dispute is centered around, what is most needed is experience in alternative dispute resolution and a persistent personality that will allow them to keep the disputing parties on track. This often requires taking a different tack or using a different technique if everyone reaches an impasse. Once an agreement is reached, the mediator is responsible for drafting all documents to be signed. These may or may not be passed on to attorneys for approval, but once they are signed by authorized parties and given to the court, everyone involved is beholden to a binding agreement and must begin doing their part as outlined in the settlement.
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!