Mediation Services

What is Mediation?

Mediation is a process of dispute resolution, facilitated by a mediate, designed to help parties resolve their own dispute without going to court. A mediator is a trained facilitator, and is neutral and independent of the parties and their dispute. They hear both sides of a problem, and helps the parties achieve a satisfactory resolution of their dispute. Mediators provide a confidential forum, encourage discussion, and are not limited by rules of the evidence and procedure governing court and arbitration proceedings. No decisions are imposed by mediators. Instead, mediators help people make their own decisions about what solutions will work best for them.

What are the differences between litigation, arbitration and mediation?

In litigation and arbitration, someone makes a decision for the disputing parties. In mediation, the disputing parties mutually consent to their own agreement. In litigation and arbitration, typically, the disputing parties are represented by an advocate. In mediation, the disputing parties typically represent themselves. However, they may be assisted by legal counsel, experts and consultants. Mediation is not a settlement conference. The goal of mediation is to find a mutual resolution to the disputed matter with all parties.

What are the advantages of Mediation?

Mediation saves time, money, and minimizes hostilities while maximizing good-will and cooperation between parties. The mediation process provides a positive environment, a pro-active problem solving approach, and a confidential forum for discussions.

What is the Mediation process?

  1. The mediator(s) welcomes the parties and reviews the ground rules and guidelines.
  2. An Agreement to Mediate & Confidentiality Form is signed by all parties.  This agreement states that all parties understand that mediations is a voluntary process and that the contents of the case file, mediator's notes, statements made during the mediation session and all correspondence shall be confidential.  It also includes a release of information clause which allows us to communicate more effectively with the referring agency.
  3. The mediator(s) give each party the opportunity to describe his/her dispute as (s)he sees it.
  4. The mediator(s) sets an agenda of the issues and guides parties in communicating with each other. 
  5. The communication process and negotiations continue until each issue is discussed and a resolution is reached.
  6. The resolution is written up by the mediator(s) and is reviewed for final approval by the parties.
  7. A copy of the agreement is made available to each party and the original is placed in the file.  If the case is a court ordered case, the original will be given to the plaintiff to hand carry to court.  A copy will be given to the defendant. 
  8. The referring agency is contacted to let them know that and agreement had been reached.
  9. The parties will be contacted within 90 days after the mediation for follow-up.

Is it Confidential?

Yes! What is said in mediation stays in mediation. All participants will be asked to sign a Confidentiality Agreement. All communication, written documents, agreements, professional consultants, and work analyses are of a confidential nature between the parties and the mediator. The Confidentiality Agreement specifies that the parties will abide by the California Evidence Code Sections 1115-1128. Of note, Section 1119 specifies:

A. No evidence of anything said or any admission made for the purpose of, in the course of, or pursuant to, a mediation or a mediation consultation is admissible or subject to discovery, and disclosure of the evidence shall not be compelled, in any arbitration, administrative adjudication, civil action, or other non-criminal proceedings in which, pursuant to law, testimony can be compelled to be given.

B. No writing that is prepared for the purpose of, in the course of, or pursuant to, a mediation or a mediation consultation, is admissible, or subject to discovery, and disclosure of writing shall not be compelled in any arbitration, administrative adjudication, civil action, or other non-criminal proceeding in which, pursuant to the law, testimony can be compelled to be given.

C. All communication, negotiations, or settlement discussions by and between participants in the course of mediation or mediation consultation shall remain confidential.

Does Mediation Work?

Yes.  Once both parties agree to mediation, there is an 80-90% resolution rate.  The mediation process is uniquely designed to handle all types of disputes.  It recognizes people as individuals at that every dispute brings unique characteristics and concerns.  The flexibility of the process allows both parties to explore all of the issues, including underlying sources of conflict, complex issues, or issues where there is a high level of emotion attached.  Mediation allows parties to consider a wider range of possible outcomes than is often available through other legal processes. Any solution is possible with mediation.  Performance under mediation agreements is generally high because no agreement is written unless the parties agree that the solutions are viable for everyone.

To schedule - Call 714.479.1022

Dispute Resolution Services through - 
CSP (Community Service Programs)
1821 E. Dyer Rd., Ste. 200
Santa Ana, CA 9270