PRACTICAL TIPS FOR MEDIATION
By: Allene D. Nicholson, Esq.
- HELP THE MEDIATOR be prepared to help you. Send a summary of the case, commensurate with the complexity of the case. Depending on the case you can include:
- Key documents, photos, diagrams
- Expert reports
- Deposition excerpts
- Key pleadings
- Prior settlement negotiations
- PREPARE--yourself and our client--for the Mediation
- Identify and list your strengths and weaknesses, and those ofthe other side(s)
- Outline cost to date, and probable costs to continue litigationto trial.
- Outline information you have and don't have about your case
- Outline information you have and don't have about the otherside(s)
- Discuss and analyze settlement options with your client beforethe mediation
- Be prepared to "negotiate"
- Put on a "GOOD SHOW" during the opening presentation, and prepare your client to do the same, if appropriate. This is a golden opportunity to have an impact on the other side(s). See especially "The Use of Evidence in Mediation".
- "USE" the Mediator. Present your strengths and the weaknesses of the other side clearly that you want emphasized to the other side. Let the mediator know, directly or indirectly, that you want reinforcement made to your client about some weaknesses and risks in your case.
- Be FLEXIBLE. If you feel it would be helpful for the two parties to speak alone, or you want to talk alone with the other attorney, or the mediator, suggest it.
- Be CREATIVE. There are often creative solutions to resolve a dispute that involve consideration other than money, e.g. a free cruise, a future discount, continued employment, etc. Also, consider Adjournment and a subsequent Mediation.
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