Mediation is an important legal tool that can help people or companies avoid the time and money costs of litigation. It is a structured process of resolving disputes that can often be better than going to a full courtroom process.
In mediation, a neutral arbitrator creates an environment where the two sides can sit together and talk through the issues they want to resolve. This could be anything from a divorce to a business dispute. Mediation is less structured than court, and there is no legally binding outcome unless the two parties manage to work out an agreement that resolves the case. This lowers the stakes as well as the level of risk for both parties, leaving them free to speak. Even if they do not come to an agreement in mediation, the parties can make progress, understand each other’s position, and be better prepared for the court case.
Mediation is better than full litigation in many cases. The clearest is that it is cheaper. It involves fewer billable hours and no court appearances. Mediation can also clarify the goals and viewpoints of the parties in a transparent way that lacks the acrimony of court, making a resolution easier to find. The goal is to do as much as possible to close the case. Not all cases are a good fit for mediation, but some can be solved entirely with it, and others might even require it as a condition before embarking on further steps.
Mediation saves time and money, turns down the emotional stakes, and can get legal cases resolved faster than court alone.