Mediation is a way of helping people resolve conflict. It is voluntary, confidential, and non-adversarial. It is not a court proceeding and does not compromise your legal rights.
Mediation is a structured process in which an impartial, professionally trained person, called a mediator, meets with the parties involved in a disagreement and assists them in reaching a solution that is mutually acceptable. In mediation, decision making authority rests entirely with the parties. The process encourages the parties to discuss difficult situations and explore creative options to resolve the disagreement.
Most mediations begin with a joint session of all the parties and their representatives. The mediator makes introductions, reviews the process, discusses ground rules and gives each side an opportunity to describe the dispute. Following this opening session, the mediator may choose to split the parties into separate groups and meet with each side privately. These private sessions are often referred to as caucuses. The parties may choose to have their attorneys or other persons present, but in many cases, counsel may not need to attend a mediation. If a party wishes to bring someone other than their attorney to a mediation, the consent of the other party will be required.
The objective of mediation is to help the disputing parties reach a solution agreeable to both parties. The mediator assists the parties in identifying issues and fostering joint problem-solving. The mediator, then, is the facilitator, the person who helps disputing parties come to an agreement.
Almost any type of dispute can benefit from mediation. Mediation has been used to successfully resolve conflicts in almost every area, including: business and commercial transactions, community and neighborhood association conflicts, creditor/debtor relations, eldercare disputes, discrimination and sexual harassment claims, legal disputes, marital and domestic issues, real estate claims and health care issues.
For More Information
For more information on mediation and how it may be able to help you, download our free informational brochure. Visit our contact page to reach out an officer of the Indiana Association of Mediators directly.