Personal Injury Mediation: About the Process

By Mark T. Flickinger, JD on December 26, 2018

Lady justice and her balance scalesThe Provo, UT attorneys of Flickinger Sutterfield & Boulton are more than willing to see a case through to trial. The process can be long and difficult, but we remain committed to our clients and helping them in their time of legal need. That said, many cases avoid going to trial thanks to voluntary mediation. This allows both sides of a case to potentially settle out of court.

Our team of skilled personal injury lawyers have experience with trials, mediation, and settlements. We’d like to go over some considerations regarding mediation that can prove important in your case.

Who Is the Mediator?

A mediator is a neutral party who helps the two sides of a lawsuit reach a mutually agreeable resolution to a case, most of the time through a legal settlement. In their role, mediators cannot make decisions or offer opinions. The mediator can simply present facts, and is present to relay information between parties.

Many mediators are often retired lawyers or judges, which means that they are familiar with the legal process and what could be at stake in your personal injury case.

How Long Will the Mediation Process Take?

This can vary from case to case. Sometimes mediation only takes a few hours, while other times it can stretch on for multiple days. Going back and forth between parties can take time, especially if each party is adamant about their position.

What to Expect During the Mediation Process

Some common expectations during the mediation process include:

  • Expect to Disagree with the Opposing Side - When hearing from the opposing attorney, it’s likely you will hear an opinion of the case that’s completely at odds with the case your lawyer is presenting. This is normal and to be expected at the beginning of mediation.
  • Expect a Process of Compromise - Both sides of the case will likely start out with different offers to resolve the case out of court. As the mediator goes back and forth between the parties, expect there to be concession and compromises made on both sides.
  • Expect Impartiality from the Mediator - Remember that the mediator is not on anyone’s side during this process. As a neutral third party, the mediator favors no one and simply allows each side to be heard and proposals to be considered.

The Benefits of Mediation Over Going to Trial

There are three primary benefits of resolving a case through mediation as opposed to going to trial:

  • Settles Matters Outside of Court - If you would prefer your case to be resolved in private without the details being made public, mediation can help keep the matters outside of the public record. This can be helpful if you would prefer certain details or personal information to not be known.
  • Faster Resolution of a Legal Case - A full jury trial can take several months or even years to finish. The mediation process is far shorter by comparison, allowing you to have matters resolved in a much quicker fashion.
  • Less Expensive Than a Full Trial - Since the case if resolved much quicker, that means lower legal fees for both parties. This is important to consider if a lengthy trial is expected for your case.

Contact Our Personal Injury Attorneys

For more information about mediation in a civil lawsuit, be sure to contact our team of personal injury lawyers. The legal team at Flickinger Sutterfield & Boulton is here to help you. You can reach our office in Provo at (801) 753-1616.

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