Mediation is an informal process for resolving disputes utilizing a neutral third-party to help individuals on both sides of a legal case negotiate an agreement in a confidential and private setting. Mediation depends on the direct involvement of the parties and can be a much more cost-effective way to resolve a dispute than courtroom litigation. Through mediation, the parties may have a better opportunity to work together to gain a better understanding of the issues involved often identifying the heart of the dispute.
The role of a mediator is to bridge the gap between the parties and their positions to reach a solution. A mediator does not make any decision and is not a legal advocate for either party. This means that each party in a legal case is in control of the decision making during mediation.
When choosing a mediator, select someone with experience on both sides of the type of case that is in dispute. An experienced and knowledgeable mediator can help both parties see the strengths and weaknesses of their position as well as the benefits of maintaining control over the result of the case.