How Mediation Works
Mediation is an informal, voluntary process. An SMU trained mediator can assist two parties who are experiencing conflict to reach a suitable agreement. If both parties are interested, a mediator will contact the two parties involved and set up a meeting. If both parties are mutually agreeable to dispute resolution, a mediation session will be conducted by the trained mediator.
Advantages of Mediation
According to the SMU Conflict Resolution program, mediation:
... is fair and neutral
Parties have an equal say in the mediation process and the agreement terms. The mediator has no authority to impose a settlement, and there is no determination of guilt or innocence in this process. During mediation, both sides will be able to exchange information, express expectations, and propose solutions for reaching resolution. The mediator will facilitate this process by helping the parties communicate clearly and appropriately.
... can save time and effort
Most mediated settlements are completed in one meeting, often saving considerable time and effort.
... is confidential
The mediation process should be kept confidential by all parties involved. Confidential information provided to the mediator by the parties during the mediation process cannot be divulged by the mediator.
(adapted from the SMU Center for Dispute Resolution and Conflict Management http://smu.edu/education/disputeresolution/mediationservices.asp)