Mediation is another alternative dispute resolution (ADR) method for resolving disputes and it is often confused with arbitration. The primary difference between mediation and arbitration is the person who controls the decision. Mediation is generally a voluntary dispute resolution process where the parties remain in control and a person called the Mediator helps the parties find mutually acceptable resolution to their dispute. On the other hand, arbitration is a dispute resolution process where a person called the Arbitrator controls and dictates the resolution of the dispute. The Mediator facilitates the parties solution of the problem themselves through a variety of settlement negotiation techniques. Mediation often takes place before or during the arbitration or court litigation proceeding.
Attorney Pearce not only represents clients in court-ordered mediations and mediations of Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) arbitration proceedings, but he has also been trained and qualified to serve as a Florida Circuit Court Civil Mediator and as a FINRA Mediator to help you resolve your dispute. Mr. Pearce has gained substantial experience serving in all capacities in the mediation process throughout Florida and nationwide over the last 35 years of his practice.
Depending upon whether the mediation was Court ordered pursuant to Court rules or purely voluntary and pursuant to an agreement of the parties, the procedures and rules governing the mediation may vary greatly. Similarly, the style of the mediator and the process will vary depending upon the particular Mediator and parties involved in the dispute. In some mediations, the parties meet with the Mediator face-to-face throughout the proceeding and attempt to resolve the dispute. However, more often than not, the Mediator listens to opening statements by the parties or their attorneys about the dispute and then separates the parties into separate rooms where the Mediator will hold private caucuses (meetings) with each party and listen to their complaints, calms them down and helps them find a rational solution to their problem. A skillful Mediator will help the parties understand the issues in the case and the strengths and weaknesses of each party's position to reach a compromise. In some mediations the Mediator will provide his opinion on how the dispute should resolve (some Court rules prohibit Mediators from providing opinions). This process generally takes a full day but may be shorter or longer depending on the parties and their resolve to reach an amicable decision with the Mediator's assistance.The Mediator's Role
The mediator's role is to steer the parties to an amicable resolution of their dispute. Oftentimes, the parties are emotional and irrational at the outset of any dispute because one or more of them have been deeply hurt and perceive the other to be responsible for their suffering. The first thing a Mediator will do is acknowledge the parties emotional states and empathize with each party to gain their trust and confidence. The next step in the process is clearly defining the issues of the dispute and each party's position. Once the issues are defined and positions are stated, the Mediator will help the parties understand the strengths of the other side's position and weaknesses of their own positions to begin the process of compromise. The Mediator may travel back and forth between the separate meeting rooms many times carrying questions, answers, demands, counter demands, offers of settlement and counter offers to help the parties narrow their issues and bridge the gap between the amount of monetary relief that will generally resolve the dispute.
A good Mediator will focus the parties on the benefits of having them determine their own destiny then have someone else impose their decision upon them. Mediators serving in the resolution of FINRA arbitration proceedings generally have expertise in that industry and industry disputes. In most securities industry mediations, the Mediator is not constrained by any court rule prohibiting mediator opinions. A good securities industry Mediator should be able to define the issues, assess facts supporting and hurting both sides' positions and relate his/her prior experiences to both parties on how their particular dispute might be resolved if left to the arbitrators, Judge or jury.The Benefits of Mediation
Mediation can be successful in fully and partially resolving disputes. At the very least, mediation will help the parties understand their differences, lose their emotional connection, and become more rational and practical in their decision-making. If a Mediator can help the parties toward that end, a partial or full resolution of the dispute may be possible at some point in time. The sooner any dispute is resolved, the more every party will benefit in terms of personal distress and financial hardship. Anytime a dispute is settled in arbitration or litigation, this translates into huge savings of personal strife, time and money for everyone involved.Free Initial Consultation With Attorneys Who Can Handle Your Mediation Problems
Mr. Pearce is a lawyer who not only represents clients in courtroom litigation, FINRA arbitrations and mediations, but also actually serves as a Mediator for parties in Circuit Court Civil and FINRA arbitration disputes. For a hardworking Mediator or dedicated representation by a law firm with substantial experience in all kinds of securities, commodities, trust, contract, employment and investment industry mediations, contact The Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, P.A. , by phone at 561-338-0037, toll free at 800-732-2889 or via e-mail. We can also arrange a meeting with you at offices located in Boca Raton, Fort Lauderdale, Miami and West Palm Beach, Florida and elsewhere if we believe you have a viable case or defense.