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What are the advantages of early alternative dispute resolution for businesses?

When your business finds itself in a dispute with another company or with one of your employees, you may not need to fight it out in court or even file or defend a complaint. Working with a neutral mediator before litigation commences offers a variety of benefits.

What are the advantages of working with a mediator early in a dispute?

Mediation is often more efficient

Litigation is costly and time-consuming, taking resources away from your business in the process. Mediation allows you to discuss matters more directly with the other side and a neutral in a confidential setting.  In cases where you can reach a satisfactory resolution, mediation allows you to avoid the costs of litigation entirely.  Mediation also allows you as well to see your position through a neutral person’s eyes, and avoid adverse court rulings later.

Mediation allows your business to maintain confidentiality

Court proceedings are a matter of public record. The public nature of a lawsuit means that a business dispute can expose your company to outside scrutiny and potentially damage your reputation. Because mediation allows your business to keep disputes out of court and requires all parties to sign a nondisclosure agreement, it also allows your business to keep the details of your dispute private.

Mediation can help save professional relationships

Your business thrives based on its relationships, and the disputes you have with employees, vendors, co-developers and other business partners can significantly damage those relationships. Because mediation allows both parties to communicate their interests to each other and negotiate in good faith it may help you preserve the connections you have with employees you want to retain or valuable business connections.

Mediation allows you and the other party to gain closure

While many think of conflict resolution as win or lose situations, mediation focuses on compromise and creative problem-solving.  Because the mediator helps to negotiate a solution that satisfies both you and the other party, mediation offers both an opportunity to gain closure and protect the things that matter most to you.

For many businesses, mediation allows them to resolve disputes and protect their company in the process. When you’re confronted with a business or employment dispute, considering mediation or another method of alternative dispute resolution may save you and your company from prolonged litigation and substantial erosion of your bottom line.