When people think of hiring a lawyer to resolve a dispute, they often have in mind that their problem will ultimately be resolved at a trial with a judge ruling in favour of one party and against another. This understanding, perhaps reinforced through television and movies, does not represent the reality. In fact, most lawsuits settle.
For the longest time, it was not uncommon for parties to go through all the steps of litigation, from pleadings through documentary and oral discovery, only to settle, sometimes “on the courtroom steps. Bearing this pattern in mind, our firm assists clients achieve settlement sooner and cheaper than by going through the court process.
In this context, we assist parties in disputes by providing independent, unaffiliated persons to assist them to reach a resolution. This may be achieved through two different paths:
- Arbitration proceedings are generally adversarial in nature and the arbitrator makes a final decision, just as a judge does, but outside the court system.
- A private mediator assists the parties in reaching settlements through consensus and does not impose a decision.