What Happens When Mediation Doesn’t Work?

Mediation encourages disputing parties to resolve their differences outside of the traditional courtroom collaboratively. Unlike a judge, the neutral mediator does not determine the outcome; instead, the parties themselves negotiate the terms of the resolution. While many people find success using mediation, the process does not work for every dispute. If you are exploring your dispute resolution options in Minneapolis or St. Paul, here are a few things you should know about mediation and what steps to take if it doesn’t serve your needs.

When Reaching an Agreement is Difficult

The mediator understands that most parties approach meditation from different positions, and their role is to encourage the parties to listen to one another and negotiate a workable compromise. Usually, if the parties approach the process with an open mind, they will start to hear one another and focus on achieving a common goal. However, there are situations in which reaching an agreement is not possible. It’s important to remember that mediation is voluntary, and either or both parties can choose to take the dispute to court at any time.

Dispute Resolution Options Beyond Mediation

For those involved in particularly contentious disputes, moving the case to litigation may be the most appropriate action. Although some people may view this course of action as an indication that mediation failed, having participated in mediation often streamlines the litigation process. Through mediation, the parties have already addressed (and potentially resolved) several issues, shortening the timeline of the litigation proceedings. Or, the parties may decide not to pursue litigation and either continue negotiations on their own or elect to participate in mediation once again.

Exploring Whether Mediation Will Work For You

If you are facing a business or family law dispute, you have options for achieving a resolution. Mediation is a great way to retain some control over the outcome, and those who participate in mediation often report feeling more satisfied with the resolution. Additionally, the negotiation process can preserve important business or familial relationships, as you’ll learn how to listen to one another and focus on a shared goal. Should mediation fail to resolve your matter, reach out to a trusted Minneapolis attorney to discuss your other options.


Learn more about the mediation process in Minneapolis and St. Paul today by calling Rubric Legal LLC at (612) 465-0074.

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