Mediation

Our litigation environment has never been more cost conscious. A “frequently asked question” might be:

Why pay for a mediator like Scott Densem, or why mediate at all?

A successful mediation is determined by the experience and skill of the mediator

It is a generally accepted principle that the more experience and skill applied to solving a problem, the greater the likelihood of solving it successfully. The converse of this principle is also generally accepted. The old maxim, “you get what you pay for” is a pithy expression of the economic reality of this principle.

 

Most lawyers, insurance professionals, and other parties involved in the dispute business would agree that when it comes to legal advice, claims management, or expert opinion, more often than not an experienced and skilled legal advisor, claims manager, or expert will provide the highest quality legal advice, claims management, or expert opinion. This is no less true of the mediator. A mediator must not only be able master the complexities of the legal issues in the case, he or she must also be able to effectively manage the interplay of such factors as the parties’ respective knowledge, negotiating skills, strategies, and personalities. An experienced and skillful mediator is more likely to be able to do both of these things effectively, and bring the parties together in settlement. This makes the experienced and skillful mediator worth paying for.

Trials are lengthy and expensive

Our court system is overburdened. It takes a long time to get a case to trial, and then a long time to complete the trial. Trials have also become increasingly expensive. This is not only because they take a long time. More and more experts are being retained. Their expertise comes at a significant cost for their reports, and for their attendance at trial. It is also the rare, non-professional litigant who professes interest in going to trial. The vast majority would rather settle their dispute, and are prepared to make reasonable compromises to do so.

 

At mediation, counsel often quote the average cost of legal fees and disbursements for what is now considered a short trial of two weeks as being well in excess of $100,000 per party.
 
With Scott Densem, the typical two party lawsuit can be mediated with a significant likelihood of settlement for less than 10% of the cost referred to above.

Mediation yields more tolerable results to both parties involved

Mediation can produce a result which the parties create and agree on themselves, not one that is imposed upon them by a jury and/or a judge whom at least one party will believe, “got it wrong”. The unpleasant reality is that one of the parties is going to lose the case at trial. Not only will the invested money be lost, but that party will probably also owe money to the other party, a result which can only be described as disastrous.

 

Even if the case does not settle at mediation, if the mediation has been conducted by an experienced and skillful mediator, the parties can gain invaluable insight into the strengths and weakness of their own case, and the other parties’ case. This makes the experienced and skillful mediator worth paying for.

There is more value in mediation

We believe that a party could not make a better investment of litigation dollars for the value received than in retaining the mediator whose experience and skill provides the highest probability of resolving the dispute much earlier, much less expensively, and with a controlled, tolerable outcome, as opposed to the much slower, much more expensive, and much riskier option of trial. Scott Densem is such a mediator.