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Mediation is a voluntary form of dispute resolution, in which an independent third party, called a mediator, helps parties work out differences and negotiate a settlement.
The role of the mediator is to establish a cooperative environment, where through open dialogue, the parties can better understand each other’s needs and interests while exploring creative approaches to reaching a successful resolution.
The mediation process is private and confidential and allows the parties to avoid the significant time and costs associated with litigation or arbitration. In contrast to a judge or jury in a courtroom, or an arbitrator in an arbitration hearing, a mediator does not render any decisions at the conclusion of a mediation session.
In mediation, the parties bring a collaborative mindset to a process that they themselves control through their own decision-making. A resolution reached through mediation is memorialized in a legally enforceable settlement agreement.