What is Mediation?

Mediation is really an assisted conversation between disputing parties. The conversation is often a very difficult one to have and so can use the help of an impartial person. That’s the mediator. The neutral mediator facilitates the discussion and assists the parties through a negotiation process to help them resolve their dispute. The mediator helps the parties to move beyond roadblocks and focus on the important issues that need to be discussed.

In mediation, the parties are not left out of the conversation, as often happens within the legal system. Instead, the parties are very much a part of the conversation and are thereby empowered to confront and resolve their own issues. They are most knowledgeable about their own dispute and are in the best position to create a resolution that will uniquely satisfy their needs.

It is the parties themselves that decide on the resolution. The mediator does not decide the case like a judge, jury or arbitrator would. Nor does the mediator advocate for either party or take sides. And it is entirely up to the parties to decide if they want to agree at all. The process is voluntary and the parties are not forced to reach a resolution. The decision is theirs.