Whether you are filing for divorce or trying to settle a personal injury claim, there are a myriad of issues to negotiate before finalizing a settlement. A judge and/or jury can listen to these matters and make a ruling based on their interpretation of the law, or you can negotiate the issue through mediation. Mediation allows both parties to listen to one another and work together to reach a settlement that works for everyone involved.
While you are welcome to bring an attorney to the mediation appointment, one is not required. The sessions take place under the direction of a third-party mediator who is simply present to direct questions and ensure everything is covered during the negotiations process. An attorney may offer more personalized counsel during the meeting. Mediation sessions take place in a more casual, non-confrontational environment when compared to courtroom litigation.
Other benefits of mediation as reported by the American Bar Association include the following:
- More affordable options as there are no court costs and/or fees
- Settlements often occur after just one or two sessions
- Participants are able to customize their settlement based on their unique situation
Rather than wait for the court to set dates for your case, you are able to schedule your own mediation sessions based on the times that work best for you. This can also help speed up the process significantly.
Finally, participants often leave on better terms through mediation than they would after a heated courtroom battle. This can make a difference for parents who must raise children together.
This information is intended to educate and should not be taken as legal advice.