Why Your Client Should Have an Active Role in Mediation | Orlando Employment Law Attorneys | Discrimination Lawyer Winter Park, FL

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Employment Law, Advice & Litigation, Mediations &
Arbitrations, Workplace Investigations

Home » Why Your Client Should Have an Active Role in Mediation

Why Your Client Should Have an Active Role in Mediation

by | Dec 15, 2023 | Employment Law

When gearing up for mediation, it’s crucial for attorneys to assess the valuable contributions their clients can make when actively participating in the process. Negotiation skills vary among individuals, including both clients and lawyers. In the context of this discussion, the focus is on clients. Some individuals dislike negotiating altogether, wishing life were as straightforward as grocery shopping without the need for price negotiations on everyday items. Nevertheless, they may find themselves embroiled in a legal dispute where a negotiated resolution emerges as the most favorable and often the only alternative to a trial.

The First Step

The initial step in the preparation process involves encouraging clients to collaborate in getting ready for mediation, showcasing the pervasive nature of negotiation and emphasizing the importance of teamwork. This marks an opportune moment to introduce the concept of mediation to clients for the second time, complementing the mediator’s explanation. Mediation can be an unfamiliar and anxiety-inducing experience for many, making it essential to provide them with a practical overview of what to expect from their own attorney, the opposing party, and the mediator. Considering that mediators’ opening remarks may leave room for improvement, it is crucial to ensure clients are well-prepared for the process.

It’s worth noting that a successful outcome in mediation isn’t one where all parties feel disadvantaged; instead, it is an outcome grounded in a comprehensive understanding of the facts, legal considerations, and a realistic evaluation of possibilities. This requires clients to gain perspective on the dispute from both short and long-term viewpoints.

The Second Step

Moving forward, the subsequent step involves comprehending the dispute from multiple perspectives – your viewpoint, your client’s stance, and the opposing party’s stance. This deeper understanding allows for the prioritization of issues based on their significance to both parties. Consequently, you can engage in a meaningful conversation with your client about their expectations, distinguishing between central and peripheral expectations, and discussing the feasibility of achieving these expectations from your professional standpoint.

If additional information is needed to fully grasp the dispute, a strategy can be devised to obtain the missing details. This thorough understanding sets the stage for you and your client to enter mediation with a clear agenda.

The Final Step

The final aspect to consider is the choreography of the mediation process – what topics your opening remarks will cover, how your client wishes to express themselves, and your initial negotiating strategy. It’s surprising how often clients arrive at mediation unprepared, lacking consideration for their second request and seemingly taken aback by the initial offer. Unlike the improvisational nature of past legal proceedings, today’s mediations demand meticulous preparation, akin to the thorough readiness required before entering a courtroom.

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