Mediation usually involves only the participants and the mediator. The participants’ lawyers or other third parties usually are not in sessions unless both participants agree to include them. Sometimes participants are encouraged to give information to the mediator before the mediation session to help the mediator prepare.
If one or both participants are not comfortable mediating in English, the participant(s) may be able to request an interpreter. Contact the mediation program to find out what is available in your area.
Sometimes mediators meet with the participants together. Sometimes they meet with them separately. This depends on the mediator’s preference as well as your wishes or concerns.
If the parties reach an agreement in mediation, the mediator or one of the attorneys can write down the agreement for the parties to sign. The agreement may be given to the court for its approval. The mediated agreement alone does not finish your court case. It must be part of a judgment and signed by a judge.
If the disagreement is not settled in mediation, the case could go to hearing or trial or to another settlement process. Anything that was said in the mediation is confidential. If the case goes to trial or hearing, the judge will not hear any details about mediation.