Not only is mediation a more civilized way of breaking down and solving business disputes, but it’s also a much more cost-effective option. Litigation can be incredibly costly and can often lead to more disputes between the parties involved.
Mediation aims to provide a confidential space for the Parties to a dispute to discuss the issues with a neutral third party who will facilitate the parties in attempting to identify potential solutions that could result in an agreed resolution. Because mediation is confidential, the information and thoughts shared with the mediator cannot be shared outside the mediation and nothing one party shares with the mediator can be shared with the other party unless the party first agrees.
What Types of Disputes Can Benefit From Mediation
Because Mediation is a non-binding, alternative dispute resolution process, it can assist with almost any form of dispute you might experience. Anything from your run of the mill breach of contract and construction defect disputes to your complex fiduciary litigation and business or commercial disputes can be addressed in mediation. And, because the process is subject to confidentiality in a manner similar (though not identical) to attorney-client privilege, you can feel secure in sharing the more sensitive details and concerns plaguing you or your business in the disputes before you.
Because the process is voluntary in most cases, Parties can attend mediation before or after a lawsuit has been filed and with or without a court order. Mediation merely requires the Parties agree to attend mediation and to abide by the terms of the mediator. In other words, you don’t need to wait for a lawsuit to be filed to go to mediation. In fact, there is a growing trend in business to add mediation clauses to many consumer and business contracts that require the Parties to agree to attend mediation before filing a lawsuit or applying for arbitration.
At Foster Massengill, our experienced civil litigation attorney can assist you in a number of areas such as:
- Employment: The terms of employment can sometimes become a point of contention both during the term of employment and sometimes after the Parties have severed their employment relationship. Similarly, there are a range of employment law issues that may be aided by an experienced litigator serving in a role as a mediator such as EEOC complaints, wrongful termination, payroll disputes, and non-compete and non-disclosure agreements.
- Breach of Contract: Breach of contract claims are common in business and life. Mediation can assist the Parties in finding a way to resolve the dispute without the necessity of costly, winner-take-all court battles that could last years. Whether the dispute is related to a contract to buy a house, home renovation, complex business matters, financial instruments, or anything else, our experienced attorney will be able to understand and add value to your mediation.
- Consumer: Another important part of mediation is resolving conflicts between your business’s product and the consumer. No matter how great your product might be, there are always going to be customers who have something negative to say. Mediation is a great way to resolve disputes when consumer feedback is threatening to affect your business negatively.
Mediation remains confidential. No one can use what is said in mediation in a subsequent court battle and the mediator cannot be subpoenaed or compelled to testify. Indeed, at Foster Massengill, we destroy everything but the mediation agreement or order to mediate and the certificate that an agreement was not reached or the mediated settlement agreement after the mediation concludes - no notes or records of what was said or disclosed at the mediation is maintained. This allows you to frankly discuss the matters that are important to you during the mediation and allows you and the mediator to work together to find a real solution that works for everyone involved.
Because mediation is collaborative, mediated settlement agreements frequently leave Parties in a better mindset to work together in the future. This is especially useful in places and industries where businesses and people are likely to run into one another and have to work together in the future. It also tends to reduce the residual animosity between the Parties so that the Parties can move forward without the same tendency toward negative feelings.
We’re all familiar with the concept of arbitration in today’s world. Arbitration clauses are in today’s contracts are almost as common as the disputes they’re theoretically designed to address. Mediation in contrast is just as common but offers a key advantage - it’s non-binding. In other words, if you and the other Party aren’t able to reach an agreement, no one can compel you to reach an agreement. You lose nothing but your time and the cost of mediation by attending mediation!
When You Need a Business Mediation Attorney
If you’re facing a difficult business dispute and are unsure what to do next, hiring an experienced mediator can make all the difference. At Foster Massengill, PLLC, we understand that every business has its own goals and needs, and we’ll work hard to ensure that your disputes are resolved without the lengthy and expensive litigation process.
Call us today at (972) 878-9105 or message us through the website to schedule your consultation today.