Essay on Mediation and the Law
In his article “The Revolution You Won’t See on TV”, Jeff Rasley discusses the increasingly popular practice of mediation of the more dramatic (and, apparently, increasingly cliché) trial by jury. Rasley discusses how he uses mediation more frequently than in the past, and how the uncertainties and expenses associated with an actual trial have pushed his clients towards settling by way of compromise as opposed to justice.
What is perhaps most disturbing here is the trade being made: justice for compromise, or often, mere convenience. Rasley states, “even if the system falls short much of the time, it inspires us to strive for something more profound than the quickest, cheapest means to end disputes.” Nonetheless, this quickest, cheapest means to an end is fast becoming the most popular.
Rasley describes in his article a mediation hearing in which a mediator was hired to work with Rasley, and the defendants attorney. Within two hours, an agreement was reached, wherein the client received over half of the settlement demand, a monetary sum which is presented in a much more harmonious light when it is considered that it came over a year earlier than if the case had gone to trial, and that attorney fees and expert witness fees would never even come into play.
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