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In Austin courts you are compelled to attempt mediation before you can proceed to trial. Although many of our clients think that we simply file a claim and the dispute automatically progresses to trial after we complete Step 1, it is actually a very complex process. The civil litigation process requires numerous attempts to settle the dispute outside of court before the court will allow you to make your case before a jury.
The first attempts to reach an agreement are done through negotiations. We will meet with the attorneys representing the defendant and use everything we have available to convince them that a settlement is in everyone’s best interest. However, this is not always possible. Sometimes due to misguided notions of the defendant, or due to the opposing party’s plain stubbornness, these negotiations are futile and they wish to proceed to trial. In reality, this is the time that we commence mediation. This article should give you a better understand about what mediation actually is, what its purpose is and how it can help you, and it should provide you with a greater knowledge about how it affects the overall litigation process.
How is Mediation Different from Negotiations?
Negotiations actually take place throughout the entire pre-trial process. We are in continual contact with the defendant while we are investigating the claim. We share information and when we have completed our research, we present them with what we believe to be a fair settlement offer. It is at this time that we begin to actually go back and forth with the defendant in an attempt to finalize the dispute.
Negotiations are strictly discussions between the two parties which are not monitored or regulated by any specific person. It is up to the two parties to conduct themselves in a fair manner, and to be accommodating to the opposing party. Obviously, this can be very challenging from some people and it is also why many attempts at negotiating a settlement fail.
In contrast, mediation is where opposing parties meet to reach a settlement agreement, except the negotiation process is supervised by a neutral party who is in no way related to either side. At certain times during the mediation discussion is open between the parties; at other times you and your attorney will meet with the mediator separately so that you may speak candidly. The most striking difference from negotiations is that in mediation a neutral person works with both sides in order to guide the opposing parties to reach a consensus. This can be incredibly helpful, especially on the occasion when the opposition is antagonistic and simply wants to turn down every attempt at compromise.
How Can Mediation Help My Case?
Going through mediation does one of two things: it can help you reach an agreement and achieve resolution in your dispute, or in the event that you cannot reach a compromise, it can make way for your case to proceed to trial. If we achieve a successful mediation then it is incredibly beneficial for you; the faster we can resolve your issue the better. Once we help you receive the compensation you deserve, you can finally begin to move on from your accident and heal.
Often when you are in a dispute with the insurance company following your car accident you are unable to receive treatment for your injuries until they agree to pay you the necessary amount. As long as there is a dispute, you cannot receive the medical treatment you need.
Additionally, sometimes insurance companies will not want to compensate you for any lost income you have suffered due to your accident. But just because you can no longer work due to your accident injury, it does not mean that the bills stop coming. We know how challenging and difficult this situation can be for you and your family; this is why we work so hard to make sure you receive fair payment as fast as possible.
By going through mediation we can either achieve satisfactory resolution or, if the opposing party refuses to give you an adequate payment, we can finally proceed to trial. Since many counties in Texas require you to participate in mediation prior to trial, it is a necessary stepping stone in order to actually make it to the court room. If you have been hurt in a car accident and need help seeking compensation for your injuries, call Grossman Law Offices at 1-855-257-1111.