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Settlement & Mediation

Mediation is a non-confrontational problem solving alternative to courtroom litigation. It is a form of alternative dispute resolution wherein the parties seek to resolve their dispute outside of court. In mediation, a neutral third party called a mediator meets with both parties to help them find a mutually satisfactory solution. A mediator does this by facilitating communication between the parties and helping to develop a potential solution to the dispute. Unlike courtroom litigation which is an adversarial process wherein one party wins and the other loses, mediation involves the parties working together through a mediator to create a solution. Mediation is an informal process that is not governed by the rules of evidence or any defined procedure. The mediator has no power to render a decision on the matter or order an outcome; if the parties cannot reach a solution, the parties can pursue litigation.

Some advantages to mediation include:

  • Active involvement in the proceeding and solution as the power to provide a solution remains with the
  • It preserves relationships that would likely be destroyed by the hostility and division of litigation.  Because in mediation the parties work together to find a solution, it is advantageous for continuing relationships who will need to work together cooperatively in the future like divorcing parents;
  • A solution to the dispute can be unique and tailored to your situation;
  • Participants report higher satisfaction rates than people who go to court;
  • It is faster than going to court;
  • Unlike most court cases, most mediations are confidential;
  • Mediation services are less expensive  as it avoids court costs and attorney’s fees; and
  • Greater compliance as parties to mediation are more likely to follow through with the terms reached.

Mediation and settlement are a potential solution to any dispute and is a course of action considered by all attorneys at Ross, Hackett, Dowling, Valencia & Walti and always discussed with the client.


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