Mediation is a form of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), which is an alternative to the traditional litigation process. Mediation is an informal, non-court process wherein a neutral, third person assists the opposing parties to reach a voluntary, negotiated resolution.
Mediation gives the parties the opportunity to discuss the issues that differ between them, clear up any misunderstandings, determine the underlying interests or concerns, find areas of agreement, and to incorporate those areas of agreements into resolutions.
A mediator does not resolve the charge or impose a decision on the parties. Instead, the mediator helps the parties to agree on a mutually acceptable resolution.
Advantages of Mediation include:
- It is Fair and Neutral – Parties have an equal say in the process and decide settlement terms, not the mediator.
- It Saves Time and Money – Mediation can avoid lengthy and costly court battles. Mediation costs less than a lawsuit and avoids the uncertainty of judicial outcome. Legal or other representation is optional but not required.
- It is Confidential – All parties sign a confidentiality agreement. Information disclosed during mediation will not be revealed to anyone.
- It Improves Communication – Mediation provides a neutral and confidential setting where both parties can openly discuss their views on the underlying dispute. Enhanced communication can lead to mutually satisfactory resolutions.
Victoria Collier is a licensed mediator. The primary areas of mediation Collier orchestrates include: guardianship issues; residential issues for elderly; family disputes regarding appropriate health care or financial decisions, and estate litigation. Sometimes a neutral mediator is needed to calm tensions and find a compromise. Mediation between family members can save a family at times!