Mediation, as used in law, is a form of alternative dispute resolution (ADR), a way of resolving disputes between two or more parties with concrete effects. The parties discuss their disputes with the assistance of a trained impartial third person (the Mediator) who assists them in reaching a settlement. The parties will fashion the solution as the mediator moves through the process. Mediation can be used to resolve disputes of any magnitude, and is particularly useful in cases of family law (divorce, child custody, visitation, division of property), elder law issues (issues regarding care of an elderly relative, roles of adult children in caring for parent, need for long-term facility care, appropriate agents under powers of attorney, financial issues, medical care), neighborhood disputes, (noise issues, pet issues, boundary issues) and workplace disputes.
How Mediation Works
The goal of the mediation is to allow parties to resolve disputes among themselves rather than having to resort to court action. The Mediator serves as a neutral whose goal is to facilitate discussion between the parties. The mediator assists all parties in identifying goals, issues, and creative solutions, but does not take sides. The Mediator does not make any decisions and has no authority to compel any party to reach any resolution. All parties will be at the mediator’s office at the same time, but will generally be in separate rooms for most of the mediation session. The mediator travels back and forth between parties having private discussions, relaying information between parties, and assisting with fashioning creative solutions. If an agreement is reached, the Mediator drafts a Memorandum of Agreement indicating the specifics resolutions. If no agreement is reached, all parties still have all other legal options available.
Advantages of Mediation
- Enables parties to resolve disputes among themselves rather than filing a court action; parties maintain control over the outcome of the dispute
- Does not require either party to be represented by an attorney, although one or more parties may be represented
- Much quicker and less expensive than court
- Mediation has a high success rate (nationwide average is over 80%)
- Mediation is private and confidential
- Mediation if effective because settlements are based on mutual satisfaction and voluntary agreement so are more likely to be honored by the parties
- Mediation is less formal and conducted in a relaxes, non-threatening atmosphere
- Mediation allows the parties to be creative in choosing their resolutions
Kelli Y. Allen as Mediator
In additional to being a licensed attorney, Kelli is a Nationally Certified Professional in Mediation. As an elder law attorney, she is uniquely qualified to assist families in navigating issues dealing with elder law, long-term care planning, guardianship; any family issue such as divorce, custody, or visitation; and other issues requiring cooperation and communication between family members. Kelli’s style is very down-to earth, warm, and non-intimidating. She believes in a collaborative process with everyone working together to find a “win-win” solution. Kelli makes sure that all mediation participants are treated with respect and have a full opportunity to be heard.
Contact KYA Law for more information on mediation services.
Call the office at (704) 870-0340 or text us at 704-7274310.