Mediation permits the parties to have a neutral intermediary — a go-between that listens to the opposing parties. A benefit of mediation is to avoid the cost of litigation and to more quickly resolve the dispute in a timely and effective manner, significantly less costly than litigation. During mediation, each side will brief their arguments to the mediator in advance of the mediation conference date. The mediator then confers with the other party/ies to seek resolution. It is a goal of successful mediation to ultimately reach a stipulated agreement to settle the matter in a binding agreement following a mediation session. If litigation is pending, a stipulated resolution of the entire case is a goal of the mediation. In the event mediation is unsuccessful, the parties have a greater awareness of key issues in the dispute, which can provide significant value toward ultimate resolution of the case.
Arbitration is a more formal adversarial proceeding, as an alternative to litigation. Arbitration can be binding or non-binding, resulting in a decision that can be used as a basis for resolution of a given dispute. Rulings on various issues can be made in the course of an arbitration in accordance with applicable law. Binding arbitration can result in enforcement by confirming the arbitration award in court.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, mediation or arbitration can proceed by Zoom or by phone.
Mr. Long is experienced in mediation and arbitration matters. Parties are encouraged to seek alternatives to litigation in the court or administrative hearings where possible. Mr. Long has handled disputed matters involving mediation and arbitration since 2006.