Mediation is a negotiation process in which the disputing parties are assisted by a neutral third-party—a mediator. Mediators are trained to facilitate discussions and allow the parties to work out their own solution to the problem. A mediator may shuttle between the parties, however it is usually best that the parties meet with the mediator in a conference. In mediation it is the parties who determine the outcome, not the mediator.

Roxanne practices Understanding-Based Mediation.

  • This non-traditional approach to conflict is based on a simple premise: The people ultimately in the best position to determine the wisest solution to a dispute are those who created and are living the problem.

    • First, we rely heavily on the power of understanding rather than the power of coercion or persuasion to drive the process.

    • Second, the primary responsibility for whether and how the dispute is resolved needs to be with the parties.

    • Third, the parties are best served by working together and making decisions together.

    • Fourth, conflicts are best resolved by uncovering what lies under the level at which the parties experience the problem.

  • Mediation has become very common in trying to resolve domestic relations disputes (divorce, child custody, visitation), and is often ordered by the judge in such cases.

  • Mediation also has become more frequent in contract and civil damage cases.

  • One of the greatest benefits of mediation is that it allows people to resolve the charge in a friendly way and in ways that meet their own unique needs.

  • A conflict can be resolved faster through mediation and is usually more cost-effective than litigation.

  • Mediation differs from Collaborative Practice because in mediation one attorney acts as a neutral between the parties.  Although it is perfectly acceptable to bring your attorney to a mediation, the cost of hiring three attorneys to resolve your dispute may not make sense for your situation.  However, if you feel safer having your own attorney you may be interested in the Collaborative Practice modality of dispute resolution.
  • Mediation differs from arbitration, in which the lawyer-arbitrator acts much like a judge but in an out-of-court less formal setting.