Fourth Anniversary and Some Thoughts on Mediation

Four years and counting!  I can’t believe that the firm has been in business for so long.  I’m proud of how many client problems have been solved along the way, and am excited by the prospect of working with future clients to resolve their legal difficulties.

Now more than ever before, the New Hampshire system is overburdened and under-resourced.  One unfortunate result is that civil litigation seems to proceed more slowly than ever before.  In my experience, litigants in a family law context are those who most often suffer from this reality.  However, if any positive can be taken from the situation, it is that the frequency of successful participation in mediation and other forms of alternative dispute resolution has dramatically increased as a result of this problem.

Being properly prepared to participate in alternative dispute resolution is critical to making successful progress.  Far too often, I find that attorneys will arrive at mediation without having met with their client, drafted settlement proposals or even taken the time to examine the case file so as to have a fresh understanding of the issues in play.  I ensure that my clients, and their files, are prepared in advance of the session, with the goal of getting the most out of our time with the third party neutral.

Through alternative resolution, parties involved in civil litigation can take direct ownership over the outcomes of their legal matters.  Instead of leaving the resolution to a judge who may not fully understand all of the variables involved, the parties can sit down with counsel and a mediator and work through their problems to reach a solution that suits their particular needs.  The process not only provides a more expedient resolution, but saves the parties the time, expense, emotional strain and uncertainty of outcome that comes with proceeding through trial.

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