Mediation is an option that exists for civil cases. It’s where both parties have a chance to work out a compromise before proceeding with a trial. The mediation has three main parties: the plaintiff, the defendant, and the mediator. The mediator is a legal professional and neutral third party who has the job of facilitating the mediation and making sure that both parties come to an agreement – if possible – of their own free will.
Interested in finding out if mediation may be a viable option for your personal injury lawsuit? Our team of attorneys can talk to you about the pros and cons and what it could mean for your case.
What Will I Have to Do During Mediation?
One of the nice things about having an attorney is that they will do most of the talking and negotiating for you during mediation. Your attorney will meet with you prior to the mediation meeting to get an idea of what you’re willing to compromise on – and how far – and what you’re not. They will try to negotiate with the legal counsel for the other side along with the mediator. If you have questions, you will be able to speak to your attorney privately.
What Are the Benefits of Mediation?
Mediation has several benefits, but the main three are that it can save you money, time, and stress. The first two complement each other because when it comes to legal things, the less time something takes, the less it costs. Mediation is much faster than going through a full trial. This also reduces the amount of mental and emotional energy you’re spending on the case. Mediation may also help you get a better settlement than you may have gotten going through a trial. Juries are notoriously unpredictable, and mediation – when successful – ensures you know exactly what you’re leaving the case with.
What Happens If Mediation Isn’t Successful?
While mediation can be an excellent option for some personal injury cases, it isn’t always successful. Sometimes, the two sides can’t agree, so what happens then? If mediation attempts aren’t successful, the case goes forward to the next step, which would be a trial. The attorneys will let the judge know that mediation wasn’t successful, and the case will be scheduled for preliminary hearings and a trial date in the future. It’s not unusual for court dates to be several months out, so keep in mind that going to trial will significantly lengthen the process.
If you’re considering filing a personal injury lawsuit or are already in mediation talks with the other side, you need an attorney to represent your interests. Call (803) 888-2200 to reach our office and schedule your free consultation today.