Ten Values For Designing a Mediation Through Pre-Mediation Communications

As mediators we want to do our best to give the parties and their counsel value for their mediation day to either resolve their case or to achieve a direction to ultimately resolve their case. Toward this end I have found pre-mediation caucuses to identify, clarify, or organize the following:
  1. Rights and defenses of the parties.
  2. Presence of necessary parties and participants.
  3. Focus on specific factual and/or legal issues.
  4. Mediation needs of the parties and/or their counsel.
  5. Expectations of parties and/or their counsel.
  6. Schedules of the parties that may impact the mediation.
  7. The status of the negotiation and any necessary pre-mediation demands or offers.
  8. The opening statement -to do or not to do, that is the question.
  9. Personalities of parties or their representatives that may be relevant to the negotiations.
  10. Interests of the parties that may be different from their causes of action or defenses.

Pre-mediation communications are, indeed, invaluable to the mediation process.

Rodney A. Max is a principal mediator at the firm of Upchurch, Watson, White and Max.

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