By: Rene Diaz, Former District Judge, Bilingual Mediator & Arbitrator (Copyright © 2007)
“Persuade your neighbors to compromise whenever you can. Point out to them how the nominal winner is often a real loser -- in fees, expenses, and waste of time. As a peacemaker the lawyer has a superior opportunity of being a good man. There will still be business enough.”
—Abraham Lincoln, “Notes for a Law Lecture”, circa 1850.
Disputes are often resolved at mediation with new terms that may not have been considered by the parties prior to the mediation. This is the “creative” element of the mediation process; new solutions to old problems will often come up during mediation. These new possibilities of settlement that could form the basis of an agreement are the result of a synergistic process that naturally occurs at mediation when you combine three things:
(1) A participant willing to listen;
(2) A skillful attorney who is able to adapt to new facts and opportunities, and
(3) An experienced, creative mediator who is accustomed to “thinking outside the box.”
A good mediator will do more than simply convey offers or “carry water back and forth” for the attorneys; a skilled mediator will get the parties to consider creative new solutions, beyond what either side would have considered alone or without the help of a skilled, dedicated and creative mediator.
“As a mediator, I am committed to use all of the skills and experience I have gained during hundreds of mediations over the last two decades of private practice as well as my judicial experience to try to settle each case. ” Rene Diaz, Former District Judge, Certified Mediator.