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What are the Dos and Don’ts of Mediation?

Disputes are often challenging and difficult to resolve. In many instances, a disagreement escalates when parties cannot come to an agreement and sometimes, the matter has to go to court. It is often best to try to handle the issues with an alternative dispute resolution method such as mediation. While there are not any steadfast rules, there are some important dos and don’ts that you will want to follow when you participate in mediation.

What is Mediation?

There are several types of alternative dispute resolution, including litigation, arbitration, and mediation. Mediation is likely the most popular of these methods. Mediation is easier and less restrictive than other methods. In mediation, a professional mediator facilitates negotiation between parties in a dispute. The purpose of mediation is for parties to come to a mutual agreement regarding the disagreement. Mediation is not binding, but parties can resolve the matter by mutual agreement based on their negotiations.

What to Do During Mediation

Mediation is a give-and-take process with guidance from a trained professional mediator. There are some things you should try to do when you participate in mediation in order to facilitate a fair resolution.

Do Commit to Compromise

Mediation requires both parties to commit to the process. Remember that as with any dispute, both parties need to give a little in order to reach a solution. You will both need to make some compromises to reach an agreement.

Do Stay Focused on the Main Issues

When you attend a mediation session, treat it like a meeting. You should stay focused and stay off your phone. Come prepared with the important ideas that you wish to express. Allow the mediator to do their job of facilitating the conversation.

Do Be Communicative

Express your ideas and concerns in a positive manner. Now is the time to provide input. Do not allow your emotions to take over. Instead, keep in mind that you are working toward a resolution that will be the best for everyone involved.

Mediation Don’ts

Don’t Fake Your Interest in Mediation

Mediation calls for both parties to have an open outlook and a willingness to compromise. That is something you cannot fake. You need to be genuinely ready to work to resolve the matter, knowing that it will mean that you might not get your way.

Don’t Hide Your True Feelings

Do not go along with a resolution that you do not like. Mediation generally helps parties come to a conclusion that will have some benefits and drawbacks. Work through the issues so that you clearly speak your arguments in coming to a resolution you can adhere to.

Don’t Be Petty

During mediation, you will need to look at the big picture. Do not get lost in the petty details that do not help to resolve the matter. Instead, try to think ahead and see how various solutions are possible. Remember that there are usually various ways to look at the same facts.

Mediation can be a good option for those involved in complex or difficult disputes. To learn more about dispute resolution, call Moen Sheehan Meyer, Ltd. at (608) 784-8310 or email us to schedule a consultation.

Published May 13, 2024
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