Mediation

ATHERLEY LAW FIRM IS DEDICATED TO THE RESOLUTION OF YOUR DISPUTE

MEDIATION OVERVIEW

Mediation is a process for resolving disputes that allows the involved parties, with the help of a mediator, to come to an agreement to settle various issues within the dispute.  Mediation provides a unique opportunity for individuals in a dispute to jointly resolve issues and reach a voluntary agreement themselves, potentially without court involvement.  Essentially, if parties involved in mediation are able to come to an agreement, they will determine the outcome of their case instead of allowing a judge to decide for them. In mediation, you are the ultimate judge!

GOAL OF MEDIATION

The goal of mediation is always to reach a mutually acceptable and voluntary agreement. The mediation process allows involved parties to consider their options in order to make informed decisions and create a settlement that both parties can be satisfied with.

BENEFITS OF MEDIATION

When considering whether to use mediation as an alternative to trial, mediation offers many potential benefits including:

  • OPENS LINES OF COMMUNICATION
  • ALTERNATIVE TO TRIAL
  • CONSIDERABLE SAVINGS – LOWER COST THAN COURT
  • FASTER PROCESS THAN COURT
  • PARTIES CONTROL PROCESS INSTEAD OF JUDGE
  • RESOLVING AND NARROWING OF ISSUES
  • LESSENING OF FRICTION BETWEEN PARTIES
  • VOLUNTARY
  • CONFIDENTIAL

ROLE OF THE MEDIATOR

The mediator’s role is to facilitate an agreement between the parties involved in the mediation. This includes assisting the parties in identifying issues, fostering joint problem solving, and exploring settlement alternatives. Mediators are there to guide the process by encouraging the parties to have open dialogue and listen to one another. According to Florida Statutes and Rules, a Florida Supreme Court Certified Mediator is required to remain neutral and impartial, and encourage and facilitate the resolution of a dispute.

THE MEDIATION PROCESS

1. Mediation Conference Opening:

  • Mediator makes general introductions, and then discusses the purpose, process, confidentiality, and goals of the mediation.

2. Initial Instructions:

  • Mediations are often emotional and boundaries for behavioral expectations sometimes need to be established. Some mediators set ground rules to keep order in the mediation.

3. Opening Statements:

  • Generally, once the mediator has finished with his or her initial instructions, parties may want to give an opening statement where their needs, frustrations, hurts and regrets can be expressed and heard. If an attorney represents the party, that attorney is generally afforded the opportunity to provide an opening statement.

4. Mediation:

  • The mediation process usually begins in a joint session with the parties, the attorneys, and the mediator present.
  • During the mediation process, the mediator assists the conflicting parties have a conversation to jointly resolve their concerns. While mediators guide the process, mediators do not decide the process. The parties make the decisions and provide solutions to their disputes.
  • Parties are able to confidentially discuss whatever topics concern them at mediation – large or small.  Everything said during mediation (unless otherwise provided by law) may not be repeated to anyone other than the other party or party’s attorney.
  • Mediation is completely voluntary and either party can decide to terminate the mediation conference at any time after the mediators opening and initial instructions.

5. Caucusing:

  • Involved parties have the opportunity to caucus, which means separate from the other party into different rooms.  Each party is then able to speak to the mediator and/or their attorney without the other party being present. Parties can later be brought back into the same room if agreed upon.

6. Mediated Settlement Agreement:

  • If an agreement is reached, mediators create a written agreement for each party to review and sign.

POTENTIAL MEDIATON OUTCOMES

Mediation boasts a high success rate as a method of alternative dispute resolution.  Many mediation cases are either resolved in their entirety or a partial settlement is reached.  If the mediation conference results in a written and signed mediated settlement agreement, it is generally filed with the case and each party is entitled to a copy.

Generally, mediation will result in four possible outcomes:

  • Mediated Settlement Agreement
  • Partial Mediated Settlement Agreement
  • Impasse  (No agreement reached)
  • Agreement to Reconvene at a Later Date

A DEDICATED ATTORNEY & FLORIDA SUPREME COURT CERTIFIED FAMILY MEDIATOR COMMITTED TO THE RESOLUTION OF YOUR DISPUTE

Let a skilled legal professional from the Atherley Law Firm help you to resolve your dispute today. Our office is located in downtown Orlando, and we are committed to seeing you through the Alternative Dispute Resolution process in Orange County, Osceola County and the surrounding areas. For more information about mediation, call us today at (407) 459-7046, contact us online, or schedule your own consultation

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