What is Mediation?
Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) is known as mediation in North Carolina Civil Superior Court. Before getting a trial date, a mediation settlement conference is required for most cases that are filed. When talking about mediation in Wake Forest, it’s important to know arbitration and mediation have several key similarities and differences.
What is the ADR Process in NC Superior Court?
If a lawsuit has been pending for a certain amount of time, those involved will be notified that their case is going to mediation. At that point, the court will set a deadline. But, unlike arbitration, both parties can select the mediator.
Mediators are experienced attorneys and/or retired judges who have received special training to be certified. Good mediators in Wake Forest are in high demand. Many times, attorneys will agree on the mediator for their case.
The Mediation Conference
Once the discovery phase is complete, both parties will schedule the mediation conference. This is when the litigants, attorneys, and the mediator meet. This is the general way a mediation conference will go:
- The mediator gives a brief introduction and explains the mediation rules and their purpose.
- The attorneys for both sides give a summary of their cases and lay out their theories of the case.
- Attorneys declare what they want for their clients.
- Both sides go into separate rooms.
- The mediator meets with both sides separately and will go back and forth to see where both parties can find common ground.
Using a mediator in Wake Forest can be helpful because it can help avoid going to trial.
How to Avoid Trial with a Mediator in Wake Forest
Using a mediator for your case can help to reach a reasoned compromise. Any good mediator can help each side see the weaknesses of their case. They will also explain to their clients the uncertainties that go along with a trial.
Unlike an arbitrator, the mediator does not make a ruling. When both sides reach a compromise, the mediator will make a written report to the court. If no agreement is reached and there is an impasse, the case goes to trial.
It’s important to note that sometimes no matter how hard a mediator tries, some cases cannot be settled for one reason or another. The mediator cannot order anyone to do anything. Everything said during the conference is also privileged which means it can’t be used if the case goes to court.