Many people are turning to mediation as an alternative way to resolve disputes across the spectrum. Although mediation has been most popular in family law situations and commercial disputes, this tool can also be effective at resolving a wide variety of conflicts. For the most part, if the issue can be litigated, it can also be mediated. This is why business and professional conflicts, employment concerns, small claims disputes, and even custody issues have all been resolved successfully using mediation.

If you are able to go to mediation prior to getting engaged in a courtroom battle, this would be better for the outcome of your case. First of all, mediation tends to have more satisfactory results in litigated cases. It is also less expensive because the situations can be resolved more quickly. As an initial means of resolving your dispute, mediation can be highly effective. This doesn’t mean that the only time you can use mediation is at the outset of your case, however. Some people find that even after months or years of trying a case in litigation, mediation is one way to free the disputing parties from their gridlock and allow them to work together to create an agreement.

Mediation is most appropriate if you are interested in helping to create your own solution. In mediation, a neutral third party helps the disputing individuals discuss the common issues with one another. During this time, a mediator is searching for common ground. The mediator then uses this common ground to suggest possible solutions. Ultimately, the parties are responsible for deciding when a mutual agreement has been reached. Leaving a case up to the hands of a judge can be stressful since the parties may have little or no say in what their outcome looks like. What tends to happen in mediation is that the parties involved in the conflict are more in tune to their situation and more likely to come up with a creative and flexible solution for their needs.

A crucial component of mediating your case is whether the other party is amenable to resolving your dispute this way. If you and the other party are on completely opposite terms, for example, it may be difficult to reach a resolution in mediation. Sometimes, though, even a party who seemed set in its ways may be open to mediation after litigated case has dragged on for some time.