Whitsitt Gross Rowberry LLC Attorneys


Carbondale Office  970-963-6363

Eagle Office   970-328-5553  

Carbondale Office  970-963-6363

Eagle Office   970-328-5553  

Mediation Overview

Whitsitt Gross Rowberry is experienced and ready to assist with your mediation needs. Mediation, as used in law, is a form of Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR), a way of resolving disputes between two or more parties with concrete effects. Mediation provides a forum for all parties involved in a dispute to meet in one place and focus on the issue of settlement. Typically, an impartial third party, the mediator, assists the parties to negotiate a settlement. Disputants may mediate disputes in a variety of domains, such as commercial, legal, diplomatic, workplace, community and family. 

Mediation techniques may reduce the natural hostility and distrust among adversaries and create an environment conducive to negotiation, compromise, and settlement. Additionally, mediation empowers the parties, rather than the lawyers, judge, or jury, with control over the terms of the resolution of their dispute. It enables the parties to structure not only traditional settlements that require payment of money, but also creative settlements that meet the parties' special needs. Some of the benefits of Mediation include:

Cost—While a mediator may charge a fee comparable to that of an attorney, the mediation process generally takes much less time than moving a case through standard legal channels. While a case in the hands of a lawyer or a court may take months or years to resolve, mediation usually achieves a resolution in a matter of hours. Taking less time means expending less money on hourly fees and costs.

Confidentiality—While court hearings are public, mediation remains strictly confidential. No one but the parties to the dispute and the mediator(s) know what happened. Confidentiality in mediation has such importance that in most cases the legal system cannot force a mediator to testify in court as to the content or progress of mediation.

Control—Mediation increases the control the parties have over the resolution. In a court case, the parties obtain a resolution, but control resides with the judge or jury. Often, a judge or jury cannot legally provide solutions that emerge in mediation. Thus, mediation is more likely to produce a result that is mutually agreeable for the parties.

Compliance—Because the result is attained by the parties working together and is mutually agreeable, compliance with the mediated agreement is usually high. This further reduces costs, because the parties do not have to employ an attorney to force compliance with the agreement. The mediated agreement is, however, fully enforceable in a court of law.

Mutuality—Parties involved in mediation are typically ready to work mutually toward a resolution. In most circumstances the mere fact that parties are willing to mediate means that they are ready to "move" their position. The parties thus are more amenable to understanding the other party's side and work on underlying issues to the dispute. This has the added benefit of often preserving the relationship the parties had before the dispute.

Support—Mediators are trained in working with difficult situations. The mediator acts as a neutral facilitator and guides the parties through the process. The mediator helps the parties think "outside of the box" for possible solutions to the dispute, broadening the range of possible solutions. 

The mediator establishes the ground rules for the mediation process, assists the people involved in determining what's important to each of them and their needs relating to resolving the problem. The mediator guides the people in identifying all of the issues, prioritizing their needs and desires, and determining what type of resolution will work best for them. The mediator does not tell people how to solve their dispute but often assists them in generating their own solutions, some of which may be quite creative. The mediator may not disclose or be compelled to disclose information shared in mediation.

Mediation is favored because the flexibility and informality of the mediation process makes it useful in a wide variety of matters. In most cases, the parties in mediation are voluntary participants who do not surrender control of the ultimate resolution of an issue in controversy so that matters of authority and control do not become obstacles to resolution.