Mediation (Medicolegal Issues)

Mediation (Medicolegal Issues)

Almost every health care liability claim will be mediated before it is tried or otherwise resolved. Mediation is an integral part of the litigation process. Without fail, courts either order parties to mediate before trial or require that mediation be part of an agreed-on pretrial plan created by the parties (1). Mediation, when properly used, can be beneficial and quite effective, but its routine use in the pretrial process has eroded its potential benefit. The pro forma use of mediation has also allowed this dispute resolution tool to often be misused and a waste of time for all involved. If mediation is approached with the proper mindset and commitment, however, it can be of benefit. Mediation provides the parties to a legal dispute a face-to-face opportunity to resolve their differences through use of an impartial third party (the mediator) in circumstances that require a focus on the claim with a minimum of outside interference. Mediation also minimizes the potential for the parties’ counsel to control the outcome or interfere with the negotiation process. While the court cannot compel parties to resolve their differences, it can compel them to participate in mediation to see whether those differences can be resolved (2).

Mediation (Medicolegal Issues)



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