There are multiple advantages to choosing mediation over litigation when dealing with insurance claims. One of the biggest advantages is that mediation can help preserve valuable relationships, whereas litigation can destroy relationships.
However, those who are unfamiliar with mediation might have a hard time conceptualizing what it looks like as compared to traditional litigation. According to FindLaw, there is no set mediation process and it may look different between cases, but there are some common steps.
How does mediation start?
Usually, mediation starts with a mediator introducing himself and making opening comments. Once the stage has been set, both sides will come forward and explain their side of the story without any comments or interruptions from the other side.
Once both sides have had their say, the mediator steps in and begins facilitating a mutual discussion. Sometimes this will happen with both parties present, and other times the mediator will engage with each party privately. The discussion will go back and forth as both parties work out their issues.
Usually once both sides discuss all aspects of the situation, the mediator will start to help both parties negotiate together to arrive at a solution.
What happens once there is a solution, or if there is no solution?
If negotiations are successful and both parties come to a solution, then the mediator will help both parties put the agreement in writing. At this point both parties usually will consult their own lawyers in order to ensure that the agreement is legally beneficial to everybody. If there is no solution, the mediator will summarize the content of the discussion and offer options for moving forward with the dispute.