What is Mediation?

Q. What is mediation? 

A. In the mediation process, a neutral third-party helps both sides discuss all issues of a dispute and negotiate an agreement. This is usually done by designating a time and place for all the participants to gather with the mediator to discuss the dispute and share ideas about how the conflict can be resolved.

Often, creative solutions - and not just money - are at the center of a resolution. An independent mediator helps both parties work out creative solutions. The mediator may also place the parties in different rooms to discuss the issues separately with the participants. A mediation session will often take an entire day and if a resolution is not forthcoming that day, more meetings are scheduled.

Q. Why mediation?

A. With lawsuits increasing and litigation costs soaring, more parties are recognizing the value of mediation instead of resorting to lawsuits to resolve disputes. The mediation process has helped employers and employees alike avoid legal costs and the lengthy time court action takes. Mediation provides an outlet to voice grievances and walk away with a sense that you have had your “day in court.”  

Q. Do you receive a mantra when you mediate?  
A. No.  You’re mixing it up with meditation. Similar spelling, but they’re not the same.  However, both can provide the stress relief you require—with or without a mantra!


What is Arbitration?

Q. What is arbitration?

A. In arbitration the parties select a neutral party (or parties) empowered to hear their dispute and make a decision for them. Unlike mediation where a third party helps the parties arrive at an agreement, in the arbitration process the arbitrator(s) make the decision for the parties.

Q. Why arbitration?

A. Arbitration is much more likely to be streamlined, timely and less expensive than a trial would be. It can avoid the lengthy and expensive government administrative process that is often required before litigation for many employment law issues. It is also held in private so that sensitive (often emotional) issues for both parties are not exposed to the public glare of a trial. It will often take much less time for a decision than typical litigation that can take three to five years.