Community Mediation

Community Mediation Services in Los Angeles

What is community mediation?

Community mediation is a process of dispute resolution in which parties in conflict, such as neighbors, voluntarily agree to collaborate with each other in a confidential process to jointly work to resolve issues they may have. Usually, the process is employed in disputes among neighbors or local business entities for amounts in controversy which may not warrant engagement of attorneys or formal proceedings.

At its simplest, community mediation is parties working with a neutral third party, often a volunteer, to jointly problem solve and collaboratively seek agreement to resolve their dispute. If successful, the parties may completely avoid having to deal with the courts, other than filing of documents to validate their agreements whether those agreements resolve all or only some of the issues that must be addressed.  Time, money and emotional costs are saved in the process. The parties fully participate in the decision making process.

Mediation is distinguished from litigation in that it is voluntary, confidential and the parties themselves are in the end the decision-makers, not a judge or jury.

Traditional litigation proceedings are adversarial. Each side fights to maximize its benefits, often at the expense of the other party.  In doing so, it is possible to expend huge sums of money.  Litigation over any dispute is traumatic, expensive, time consuming, and most often irrational.

If the mediation effort is not fully successful, the parties retain their options to seek relief from the courts – a process that is time consuming, expensive and filled with uncertainty regarding the outcome.

Advantages of Community Mediation over Litigation:

  • Confidential—Differences can be worked out in private, not in a public trial
  • Less expensive—Significantly lower costs, often 90% less than litigation
  • Faster resolution—Can save literally years over slower, court-based dissolution
  • Better communication—Parties learn to communicate in more constructive ways
  • Improved future—Collaboration sets a positive tone that continues

Los Angeles Arbitration Attorney Michael H. White

Los Angeles-based mediation lawyer Michael H. White has mediated scores of complex business cases and has taught mediation and other ADR techniques at the university level.  His objective, in addition to providing fairness and equity among the parties, is to recognize and fashion a result that may preserve the ongoing relationships of the parties as they resolve disputes.

Call Michael now for a free consultation: (818) 368-0444

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