Many consider the use of mediation as “stepping outside of” the legal process. Nearly any dispute can be addressed without awaiting a determination from a judge or arbitrator. Even if a dispute is already in court, mediation can still be used to bring the parties together for discussion and resolution.
Mediation, whether “inside” or “outside” of the legal process, is designed to provide an opportunity for the disputing parties to talk directly to one another. The mediation process gives agency to each party to offer her/his perspective, while the mediator ensures that each party has been heard and has been understood. If the parties reach a resolution, it can be incorporated into an agreement, and, if the dispute is “inside” the legal process, the parties can ask the judge to incorporate their agreement into a court order. Mediation is designed to empower the disputing parties. The underlying philosophy of mediation is that parties to a dispute recognize that “This is my problem. I want to get it resolved, and I want to be an active participant in getting it resolved.”
Melvin Hess, an experienced mediator and partner at GKH, and John Huber, an attorney and an experienced mediator with Advoz, will talk about the anatomy of mediation, its various applications, and the value to disputing parties of resolving their own dispute instead of having a third party determine the outcome. A light lunch is included.