Mediation is a private, voluntary process in which the Mediator facilitates communication among the parties to promote a settlement. A high percentage of parties who mediate come to voluntary agreement.
Most mediations involve all parties to the dispute along with their attorneys. All issues and possible outcomes are discussed in a controlled and collaborative process. The Mediator serves as an impartial, neutral, and balanced facilitator to insure that all points of view are fairly heard and that all possible settlement opportunities are fully explored. The Mediator does not make a decision on the relative merits of the case or what the outcome should be if litigation is pursued.
Less complex cases can usually be settled in a conference lasting one day or less. In typical cases, each side will submit a confidential statement and relevant supporting documentation for review by the Mediator before the settlement conference. All mediation discussions are confidential under Colorado law. Statements that are made and positions that are taken in the course of mediation cannot be used in court even if the case fails to settle.
Mediation can be particularly effective to settle disputes among people who have continuing business or family ties. Parties are free to explore creative options outside the adversarial process of litigation. Mediation is cost effective because settlement can often be reached early in the litigation process before large sums have been spent on discovery proceedings. Also consider Early Neutral Case Evaluation