Mediation is one of the fastest and most effective ways of settling a Pennsylvania workers’ compensation case. Mediations can be both voluntary and mandatory. In this article, we will examine the meaning of mediation, its pros and cons, and discuss what it could mean for your Pa workers’ compensation case.
What is mediation?
Mediation is a negotiation session between two parties that are involved in a lawsuit (for example, an injured worker vs. their employer’s insurance company), each party’s legal representative, and a neutral facilitator. These negotiations are confidential and serve the purpose of quickly resolving the workers comp case. Mediation can be both voluntary and mandatory, although it is usually voluntary, and can take place at any time during a workers’ comp case, even if a one or more court sessions have already taken place.
What can you expect at mediation?
During the mediation, all present parties will discuss the case. At this point, the judge will generally go down a list of all the major case points and make sure that all information has been brought to his or her attention. After the group discussion takes place, the judge will meet with the opposing parties privately to see if a fair resolution can be agreed upon.
If a fair resolution cannot be agreed upon, the mediator will help plan the next course of action in taking the case forward. This can involve taking the case to the courtroom or planning mediation. Every case is different.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Mediation
Mediation has some definite benefits. The biggest of these being that most mediations are quick and effective at satisfying both parties. Other advantages include less legal fees for both parties if the case is resolved quickly, flexible scheduling, and the opportunity to be more creative with resolutions.
As for disadvantages, there really aren’t many. The main issue being that there’s a chance the case may not be settled during the mediation, but this is rare, and is usually the result of one of the parties being stubborn and overestimating the value of their argument. If this is the case, the mediator will usually remind the stubborn party they may want to reconsider what they are asking for.
If you live in the Harrisburg, Bethlehem, or Reading area and have been injured on the job, you may be entitled to Pennsylvania workers’ compensation. For more information, contact PaWorkersCompHelpNow at 877-COMPHELP for a FREE evaluation. Remember, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain.