Mediation is used to settle disputes. When two parties are unable to settle a dispute, they will often use mediation in order to reach an agreement. When two parties agree to use mediation, a neutral third party will work with the two parties in dispute in order to develop a settlement agreement. The neutral third party is known as the mediator.
A Mediator is a neutral third party who is selected by parties in dispute to help settle a dispute. Both parties mutually select the Mediator. A Mediator does not need to be a lawyer, but is often an expert in the field in which the parties are claiming a dispute.
Once parties in dispute agree on mediation, they select a mediator. The mediator will then conduct a mediation hearing. During a hearing, both parties may be brought together in order to work on an agreement or a mediator may use shuttle diplomacy. Shuttle diplomacy is a technique used by a mediator where s/he goes back and forth between parties with proposals in order to reach an agreement. If an agreement is made, the parties will sign a settlement agreement. To view an example of an agreement to mediate, click here.
As a result of mediation the parties may decide to resolve their dispute. The terms of agreement are listed in a settlement agreement and the written agreement is signed by the parties in dispute. Typically, the mediator facilitates the agreement but does not sign the agreement. To view an example of a mediation agreement, click here.