Mediation Procedures

Initiating Mediation

– If all of the parties have agreed to mediation, please call or e-mail to arrange a date and time. Include the names and contact information for all participants. We will also need to discuss how much time to allocate for your mediation session (e.g., half day or full day). If you need assistance with encouraging other parties to agree to mediation, we can help with that process.


Pre-Mediation Telephone Calls

– After deciding that mediation is appropriate, and you have scheduled your session, you are encouraged to call and discuss any issues relating to the mediation. Your communications are, of course, confidential.


Confidentiality

– Confidentiality in mediation is crucial. All participants will be required to execute an agreement that, among other things, preserves confidentiality.


Attendance

– A satisfactory settlement is most likely to be achieved when all parties and all decision-makers personally appear at the mediation. However, each case is different. Some clients may be out of state or otherwise unavailable. If a party wants to participate by telephone, their counsel should contact opposing counsel in order to obtain prior consent.


Mediation Briefs and Advance Preparation

Counsel are strongly encouraged to submit mediation briefs, although they are not required. By submitting a mediation brief, time will be saved at the mediation session and advance preparation time is more effective. Briefs should include:

  • The operative facts of the case, the parties’ legal positions;
  • the details of the relief sought;
  • the history of any settlement discussions;
  • copies of any key documents, and
  • any other information you believe would be helpful.

Briefs may be exchanged or submitted in confidence. Mediation briefs of 15 pages or less including exhibits and/or pertinent legal authority can be e-mailed or faxed. Anything larger than 15 pages should be mailed. Briefs should be submitted at least two business days in advance of the scheduled mediation session for proper and timely review.Resolving preliminary issues such as damage calculations in advance will save considerable time at the mediation. It is also efficient and valuable to prepare draft settlement agreements in advance to bring to the mediation.


Location

– Mediations may be held at counsel’s offices or at a neutral venue secured by Rande Sotomayor throughout Southern California.