Pros and Cons of Civil Lawsuit Mediation | Pollack Peacebuilding Systems

September 21, 2019by Vanessa Rose

In civil cases, involved parties may find that mediation is a better, more cost-effective path to a solution than pursuing litigation. Any type of civil case may be mediated, but all parties must agree, even if a lawsuit has already been filed. Deciding if civil lawsuit mediation is the right choice for you isn’t easy, but understanding what’s at stake and how you may benefit should make the decision a little bit easier.

Civil Lawsuit Mediation

It might sound strange that disputing parties separated by a lawsuit may decide to collaborate in a mediation process rather than litigation. Civil lawsuit mediation may be a better solution for several reasons and it may be in everyone’s best interest. If you’re wondering what the right path may be for you in your civil case, explore these mediation pros and cons:

PRO: Compromise

In mediation, everyone gets a little something they want. Using a collaborative approach to problem-solving, mediation requires all parties to agree with a resolution which means even if you have to sacrifice some points, you can negotiate for your deal-breakers and work collaboratively with your opposing party.

PRO: Cost

If mediation does the trick in resolving your conflict, the cost is typically substantially less than what could happen in a trial. Private mediators usually charge an hourly rate and many applications of mediation in a civil lawsuit only last a few hours. Lawyer fees may also be necessary but that would remain the case if your dispute made it to court.

PRO: Privacy

Mediation conversations are held privately and do not become a matter of public record. This mediation confidentiality could come in handy if you’re business is trying to maintain brand reputation and not lose customers during an already difficult time.
Civil lawsuit mediation isn’t all good, though. It has some drawbacks for certain types of disputes and parties that may render it an impossible option. Here are some cons to civil lawsuit mediation:

CON: Sacrifice

If you were to take your civil case to trial, you’re more likely to have a clear-cut solution. In other words, a judgment may be made entirely in your favor. In mediation, you’re asked to bring some bargaining chips to the table so a joint settlement can be declared, forcing you to potentially leave more on the table than you might need to.

CON: Room for Waste

One of the major mediation problems is that if parties don’t agree, you may never reach a resolution and trial will become an inevitability. In this case, you may have gone through a time-consuming and expensive ordeal without a positive outcome.

CON: Informality

While court may be too rigid to some, mediation lacks in rules and structure. This may mean trouble for a passive party who finds themselves up against an aggressive one. In that case, the passive or timid party may lose a lot be the sheer nature of their inability to assert themselves. Conflict resolution, even in the most challenging scenarios, should ultimately be about fairness and repair, which mediation may not always be able to facilitate, especially in cases like these.

If figuring out your options still seems overwhelming, contact the conflict resolution professionals at Pollack Peacebuilding Solutions today.

civil lawsuit mediation

Vanessa Rose

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