Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)
Mediation is a form of conflict resolution in which a neutral party, or “mediator” helps parties in conflict to resolve or manage their differences.
Unlike a court proceeding, in which the parties are adversaries, each seeking to assert their own point of view or win a case, mediation is intended to induce cooperation between the parties, seeking a mutually agreeable solution rather than a victory for one party or the other.
Mediation can be particularly well suited for conflicts between people who need to have continuing contact with each other in the future, such as a divorcing couple hoping to co-parent their children after divorce, or co-workers hoping to remain at their jobs despite disagreements. It may also help parties who do not wish further contact to end their relationship in as constructive a way as possible.
For many, mediation can be a less stressful, time-consuming, and expensive option than bringing their case to court.
Mediation can also dovetail nicely with legal proceedings, offering the parties an opportunity to reach agreement on some issues, while reserving the right to seek legal assistance with more difficult ones.