Preparing the Mediator

The goal of your mediator is to help the parties settle their dispute.  You are paying the mediator to assist in making this happen.  There are things you can do in advance of the mediation that can help the mediator help the parties reach a settlement.

Some mediators ask for a brief written submission prior to mediation while others do not.  Even if your mediator does not, provide one.  Briefly outline your case.  Support your positions by setting out key facts and applicable law showing the strengths of your case.  Point out what you believe are the weaknesses in your opponent’s case.  If you believe that more than a brief written submission is necessary, provide one.  You may want to include deposition excerpts, copies of key documents, photographs or copies of cases.  If you do, highlight the parts of written materials you rely on for easy reference.  But don’t clutter your submission with unduly repetitious or marginally relevant information.

You may keep your submission a confidential communication to the mediator which is not to be shared with the opposing party.  Or, you may chose to provide it to the other party if you believe doing so could be helpful in getting your opponent to focus on the strengths of your case.  If you want it kept confidential the mediator will not share it with the other side.

Preparing your mediator in advance, rather than simply relying on your presentation in the joint session, will be helpful.  This is because it may be difficult for the mediator to absorb and keep everything you believe is important in mind based solely upon your oral presentation.

As part of preparing the mediator, you may want to suggest a conference call of counsel for all parties during which the mediator can be briefed on the positions of the parties, anticipated problems that will need to be worked through, procedural matters, etc. 

Depending on the nature of the case, and the professional working relationship of counsel in a case, this can be very useful.  You may also want to agree with your opposing counsel that advance private telephone calls with the mediator may be made.  This can be particularly helpful where you want to share confidential information concerning unreasonable expectations by your client or other sensitive concerns that you believe would be helpful for the mediator to know about prior to the mediation beginning.

More Information CLE Offerings

Chadwick Mediation & Arbitration, LLC
1450 Greene Street
Augusta, GA 30901
Phone: 706-823-4250
Fax: 706-828-4459

Chadwick Mediation Services
Our Mission: To provide an impartial, constructive and forward-thinking means for resolving disputes with integrity and the preservation of dignity for all involved.