Disputes erupt between New York business owners for many different reasons. What can you do when a dispute arises?

One option, if the parties are amenable by mutual agreement, it to try mediation.  Mediation involves a formal face to face meeting between the parties with a professional mediator.  Mediators are trained in dispute resolution.  Construction mediators are often attorneys who focus on the construction industry.

The benefits of mediation

Mediation is important because, if nothing else, you gain a better understanding as to what drives the other side’s position.  Statements made during mediation are for the benefit of settlement, and, therefore, cannot be used as evidence in later proceedings.

The mediation starts with the parties and mediator in the same room.  Each side makes an opening statement.  Then the parties further discuss issues.  Then the mediator separates the parties into separate rooms.  The mediator will then have private confidential discussions with each side to see where there is room for movement.  Mediators also provide a reality check to parties and attorneys to keep them honest about their likelihood of success.

Preserving connections and reputations

By resolving disputes through mutual resolution, it often helps preserve relationships for future business.  It also can save money on litigation costs.

Sometimes, mediation is more effective after some litigation and some discovery of the facts.  Sometimes people have to be psychologically ready to discuss settlement, which sometimes occurs later in the process.