Many construction contracts contain mandatory or discretionary mediation clauses to mandate and/or encourage parties to resolve their disputes prior to litigation or arbitration. Also, mediation may be a good option midway through litigation or arbitration when the parties have engaged in discovery and have better feel for the strengths and weaknesses of their respective positions. In general, construction mediation is used to settle disputes regarding a construction contract between an owner, general contractors, subcontractors, engineers, architects, developers, and material suppliers.
During the construction mediation process, all sides to a dispute have the opportunity to present their side of the case. Unlike the arbitration process, during the construction mediation process, the mediator has no authority to make a decision or legally binding solution. Instead, by using a number of techniques, a mediator, or neutral third party, will attempt to resolve the issue at hand by facilitating discussions between the disputing parties and their attorneys.
Construction mediation typically will last between a day to a few days and is relatively inexpensive as there is no court filing fees or other related costs associated with construction mediation other than the hiring of a mediator and a lawyer to help with your case. The process is designed to allow all parties an opportunity to express their needs, wants, and concerns, and develop a solution that not only addresses the issues at hand but is also beneficial to the parties involved, which ultimately leads to better results.
When dealing with construction disputes and when faced with a construction mediation, it is highly recommended to seek the guidance and skill set of an experienced construction dispute lawyer. The construction attorneys at Shields | Mott have a combined experience of over 100 years in representing contractors and others in the construction industry who find themselves involved in complex construction disputes and construction mediations. The Shields | Mott professionals work hard with mediators to arrive at creative solutions to end disputes and allow clients to move forward with their attention focused on their businesses and not litigation.