Webinar: How to Prepare for Mediation

Attorneys James Vann and Caitlin Truelove discuss how mediation works along with suggestions for being prepared for a fruitful mediation. We review some tried and true tips to be best prepared as you negotiate and mediate issues of disagreement.

Enforcing Binding Arbitration Clauses

People frequently sign contracts which contain arbitration clauses. Arbitration is a process where a third party (or a panel of third parties) hear the evidence in a case and decide the outcome. This process is usually binding. Often these third-party arbitrators are attorneys in private practice who assist in the resolution of disputes. There are many reasons arbitration clauses appear in contracts. Conventional wisdom dictates that arbitration is less expensive and faster than litigation in State or Federal Court. Often that is the case, sometimes it is not. In fact, sometimes the cost of arbitration is prohibitive in pursuing a customer for non-payment. Thus, businesses should think about their circumstances when deciding whether arbitration of all disputes with customers is appropriate, or whether only certain types of disputes are to be resolved by arbitration. Often, arbitrators award less in damages than a jury might award. Thus, those who tend to face lawsuits in the personal injury context often attempt to contract for disputes to be resolved through binding arbitration.

Who Must Sign a Mediated Settlement Agreement in light of SB 255?

In 2020, during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic and in a time when most, if not all, mediations were being conducted remotely, the North Carolina Court of Appeals issued an opinion which from a practitioner’s standpoint, complicated matters. This is opinion is Mitchell v. Boswell. The upshot of Boswell was that the parties to a dispute needed to be the signatories as opposed to, in Boswell, their attorneys.

Preparing for Mediation

Many commercial and civil cases will end up in mediation. Mediation is the informal process in which the parties discuss and negotiate a possible resolution of their case with the help of a third-party neutral. The process works. As they anticipate mediation, parties often ask what they should do to prepare. Here are some thoughts.

Enforceable mediated settlement agreements in the COVID-19 Era

Mediations, like so many things in the world right now, are being conducted via Zoom and other web-based platforms. A recent Court of Appeals decision should give pause to anyone participating in a mediation conducted remotely. The decision in Mitchell v. Boswell deals with whether a settlement agreement signed on behalf of a party by that party’s attorney, is enforceable. The Court of Appeals concluded, based upon the language of N.C. Gen. Stat. § 7A-38.1(1), that such a settlement agreement is not enforceable.

Testifying before Congress, Court or a Deposition | Tips To Consider When Giving Your Testimony

Testifying before Congress, Court or a Deposition Testifying before Congress, in Court or in a deposition is something many people do not celebrate. I read some recent articles about Martin Shkreli, former CEO of Valeant,  and his recent testimony before Congress. Regardless of the issues surrounding Valeant and its corporate leadership, giving your testimony requires planning and preparation. It has been …