Mediation is a confidential, non-binding process in which a trained mediator facilitates communication between parties to assist in resolving a dispute. The mediation conference is informal, confidential, and privileged. The mediator has no decision-making authority. Rather, the mediator helps the parties analyze the issues and generate alternatives and options to meet the parties’ underlying interests. Oftentimes, mediation leads to a settlement agreement and reduces the time and costs associated with trial.
Goals of Mediation
- Assist the parties in reaching their own acceptable agreement with full exploration of all options and alternatives.
- Assist the parties in understanding the terms and future impact of their agreement.
- Avoid the necessity of trial and a Court-imposed decision.
- Reduce and/or eliminate the negative effects and costs of having to go to Court.
Advantages of Mediation
- Provides the parties with the tools to structure an agreement that is in their best interest.
- Facilitates the exchange of information, ideas, and alternatives for settlement between the parties.
- Provides a less expensive option to trial.
How the Process Works
The process of mediation begins by agreement of the parties. You, your attorney, the adjuster, the adjuster’s attorney and the mediator will all meet at the mediator’s office. Each side is given the opportunity to explain their position and to respond to the other’s side of the story. You will not have to answer any questions or speak publicly during the mediation unless you wish to. After opening statements, you and your attorney will go to a separate room (away from the adjuster and their attorney) to meet with the mediator privately. The mediator will then go back and forth between the two sides to get each side to compromise and move closer together.
The mediator, a neutral and objective participant, plays an active role in the mediation process. In this role, they mediator assists all individuals affected by the outcome to reach a settlement. The mediator will help identify issues, develop bargaining proposals, and conduct negotiations. The mediator’s goal is to reach a settlement acceptable to all parties involved. The mediator clarifies and organizes details, prompts discussion and cooperative communications, while managing and reducing conflict.
The mediator DOES NOT make any decisions for the parties. The mediator’s job is to facilitate the parties’ own decision-making process. After an agreement is reached, the mediator will draft a memorandum of understanding. Both parties and their attorneys will review the memorandum and reach a final agreement. If necessary and applicable, the attorneys will draft a settlement agreement from the terms of the memorandum and file them with the Court.
Role of the Attorney
The mediator cannot give either party legal advice. The mediator’s role is neutral and not a substitute for independent legal advice. The mediator does not represent either party. The mediator focuses on helping the parties reach their own settlement. You should rely on your attorney for advice to help you make informed decisions.
Your attorney will be with you at all times during the mediation. Your attorney may speak privately with the adjuster, the adjuster’s attorney, or the mediator. You will never have to speak to anyone except your attorney.
Satisfaction with Mediation
We have found most people and clients are extremely satisfied with the mediation process because it allows them to actively resolve their conflicts, on their terms. The stress of litigation and attending trial is significantly greater than any stress associated with mediation. It is common to resolve a case in a single day, with significantly lower costs. As your mediator, we thoroughly prepare for each case by reviewing all medical information and documents provided by the parties in order to gain a full and complete understanding of the conflict between the parties.
16820 Frances Street,
Omaha, NE 68130
Phone: (402) 932-0290
Fax: (402) 932-0301