Mediation refers to a process that allows parties in a lawsuit to avoid gong to trial. Rather than a judge presiding over a case, a mediator helps the parties make a deal and reach a settlement that everyone finds agreeable. The lawyers of Flickinger Sutterfield & Boulton have helped numerous clients resolve their cases out of court thanks to the mediation process.
The Provo, UT personal injury and accident attorneys at our law firm would like to go through some of the basics of the mediation process. This should help you understand how it works, what the process entails, and why it may be a good option for avoiding a full trial in your case.
Why Mediation May Be Preferable to Trial
A trial can last a long time with great expense from both parties involved. There is noting certain when a case goes to trial as well, which means the final outcomes may not be in your favor. With mediation, an deal that is mutually agreeable and beneficial can be reached. Many cases are mediated and settled out of court.
Who Is Present During Mediation?
During mediation, the plaintiff and the defendant camps are placed in separate rooms. You will be present with your attorney. Any loved ones, family members, or parties important to the case may be there as well. In a separate room, the defendant’s lawyer and representative from their insurance company are usually present; the defendant may or may not be there in the room during mediation.
What Happens During Mediation?
The mediator goes back and forth between each room to hear your side of the case. They will have received information from both lawyers so they are familiar with the general circumstances. The mediator, though an unbiased party, may point out risks or weaknesses in your case as it is presented.
All things said in the room during mediation are confidential, and the mediator does not share that information with the parties in the other room.
How Should I Prepare for Mediation?
Be sure to dress well during mediation and to discuss any concerns with your attorney ahead of time. Your legal counsel will typically walk you through the process and what to expect. In most cases, your attorney will do a lot of the talking, yet conversing with the mediator directly is likely to occur.
Settlements During Mediation
At a certain point during the mediation process, the mediator will present a proposed settlement from the defendant. This amount will usually be determined by the insurance representative for the defendant based on comparable incidents. From this point, the amount and the nature of the deal can be discussed and negotiated further. Be sure to weigh your options with your attorney carefully.
How Long Does Mediation Take?
In many cases, mediation is wrapped up in just a day or two, which is far less time than the months required for a full trial. However, sometimes mediation can take many days or even weeks depending on the nature of the case. This is something that can be discussing with your attorney as you prep for mediation.
Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Lawyer
For more information about lawsuit mediation and how it can help you and your loved ones, be sure to contact our team of personal injury lawyers. The attorneys of Flickinger Sutterfield & Boulton are here to help. You can reach our office in Provo by phone at (801) 753-1616.