Congratulations, you’ve reached a settlement! Now you need to set it out in the final settlement documents. You need to include all the terms on which the parties have agreed, as well as terms to make it enforceable. To help make sure you don’t miss anything, here’s a checklist of 14 common settlement terms.
A “Divorce Hotel” may be coming soon to a luxury hotel near you! As the New York Times explains, “Check in on Friday, married. Then, with the help of mediators and independent lawyers, check out on Sunday, divorce papers in hand, all for a flat fee.” Not surprisingly, this concept may have the makings of a reality show too.
One of the strengths of mediation is its cloak of confidentiality. Participants can feel free to say what they want and show documents prepared for mediation without the fear of it biting them later in the litigation. But not everything said and shown in mediation is protected. As with everything else, know the limits of mediation confidentiality.
As part of CEB’s commitment to bringing together California’s legal community, our blog will post a short interview with one of your fellow attorneys.
This week, we profile Matthew J. Geyer:
CEB: What are your practice areas and how/why did you choose or start in your practice area?
Matt: 80% of my practice now is arbitration and mediation, in commercial and other civil disputes, in a wide range of industries. So, breach of contract and business torts, fraud and nondisclosure claims, partnership and joint venture disputes, real estate sales and leasing contracts and related disputes, and professional malpractice involving accountants, engineers, attorneys, financial consultants.
CEB: What do you like best and least about practicing law?
Matt: The best thing about advocacy work is that I get to think and write for a living. The worst thing about it is counting your life in tenths of an hour. The best thing about being an arbitrator is everyone laughs at all your jokes; the worst thing is that it’s lonely work (when it’s not a panel case), at least once the case is submitted. The best thing about being a mediator is that it’s not lonely work—you get around a table and work with people through legal issues, calculations of risk, etc. The worst thing about it is nobody has to laugh at your jokes.
Mediation has become a widely accepted way of resolving disputes because it works. Mediators report that typically 85-95 percent of mediated cases result in a settlement, often with an investment of only one long day or two. Among the advantages of mediation is that it fully engages the most important players, i.e., those who initiated the dispute and are most affected by it. Here are some other advantages that might just make you want to come together and mediate!