Before deciding whether or not you should hire an attorney to represent you in your upcoming mediation meeting, it is important to understand what will happen when you arrive.
Mediation involves a neutral third party, who oversees the sharing of facts and evidence between two parties involved in a dispute. A mediator can keep conversations calm and organized, where they might otherwise become fueled with anger and resentment.
The initial meeting is intended to bring all parties together to discuss the facts of the case, present evidence, and hear witnesses’ testimony. As a participant in the lawsuit, you will be asked to present your side of the story.
You will also be asked to listen to the testimony given by the opposing party. There are a few things working against you at a mediation meeting – your emotions, your nerves, and the facts presented by the opposition.
A Saint Petersburg lawyer can help in many ways to eliminate some of those hurdles that you will encounter.
To alleviate your nerves, a good attorney will help you practice. Practice, after all, makes perfect… or so the saying goes. In truth, though, practicing what you will say before the mediator will make it easier on the day in question. The attorney can also help you tweak the statement to ensure that it makes the proper impact.
Emotional outbreaks can seriously hurt your case or allow you to say something that hurts your case. An attorney speaking on your behalf and helping to keep you calm during the mediation appointment is highly beneficial.
Finally, the biggest obstacle is the evidence presented by the opposition. If you don’t do your homework efficiently, the other party may turn up something that you missed. Being caught off guard is not going to help you stay composed. A personal injury attorney will help collect evidence, listen to the testimony of witnesses, and build a case less likely to be torn apart by the opposition.
It is also important to understand that, when mediation fails, the case may have to go before a judge and jury. The same St. Petersburg attorney can move along on this next step with you, so that you aren’t stuck finding someone to represent you at the last minute.