you go to court or mediate?
what could happen in court? What is the range of
outcomes? What is likely to happen? You
will either win or lose your case.
you comfortable with personal information being
discussed in public? Your case will be an open
hearing in court.
much time will it take and what will it cost
to go to trial? to appeal a verdict? to resolve
a countersuit? While the court makes every effort
to maintain a schedule, delays may occur.
difficult will it be to collect a judgment? The
court does not collect a judgment. It is your
responbility to collect.
a favorable verdict resolve the underlying problem?
Even if you win in court, the problem may continue.
is the appropriate resolution process to your
happens in court
Court fees, possible legal fees, cost of lost work/time.
Directed by judge.
Adversarial by nature.
Decided by judge. You win or you lose.
No privacy; discussion is a matter of public record.
Scheduled at the convenience of court. Process may be lengthy with
multiple court dates.
happens in mediation
Generally free. Session may be scheduled during non-work hours or
at convenient times.
Directed by you and others involved.
Cooperative by design.
Decided by you and the parties involved.
Privacy protected; discussion remains
confidential (except as defined by law.)
Scheduled at a mutually agreeable time.
Resolution may involve a single session.
Mediation is a process that recognizes conflict as an opportunity to
bring people together, clarify issues, discuss options and, if possible,
reach an agreement. It is a form of alternative dispute resolution and
an alternative to trial litigation. Mediation involves all parties in
the dispute working with a professional mediator trained in conflict
is voluntary. All parties involved in the dispute must
agree to mediation. However, by using mediation, parties
do not give up their legal rights. If an agreement is
not reached, parties can still go to court.
are the mediators?
come from all walks of life, with diverse backgrounds and
experiences. Every mediator receives extensive training
in conflict resolution, listening skills and working with
don’t take sides; they are trained to remain neutral.
They will not make decisions for you, provide any legal
advice or recommend the terms of an agreement.
mediator is required to maintain the confidentiality
of all communications in the mediation, except as defined
Mediation techniques have been proven effective in resolving a wide variety
of conflicts, including those involving schools, businesses, government
agencies and neighbors. In fact more than 50% of cases that go to mediation
are resolved in mediation.
have shown that agreements reached in mediation have
a higher compliance rate than other settlements. Remember,
the agreement is decided upon by all parties involved
in the dispute, so it will more likely be a lasting solution.
Dispute Resolution techniques have been proven effective
for resolving a wide variety of conflicts. The concept
is being successfully used in schools, in businesses,
in communities and neighborhoods and in courts throughout
I request mediation?
The District Court of Maryland partners with community mediation programs throughout the State to provide an alternative to court litigation. To find the community mediation program nearest to you, please visit Community Mediation Maryland's web site at http://www.mdmediation.org/ or call our office at
410-260-1676 or 1-866-940-1729 and we will be happy to provide you with that information.
You have nothing to lose in trying mediation. If you can’t reach
an agreement, you can still go to court.
District Court recognizes that many conflicts may
be better resolved through mediation or some other
alternative to litigation.
Court’s ADR program coordinators screen cases
that come before the Court and identifies those
that may benefit from mediation. Parties involved
in these disputes may be offered the opportunity
to mediate prior to the day of trial. Some courts
may offer mediation on the day of trial.
in the mediation program is voluntary and offers
do I request mediation in District Court?
case may be referred to mediation by the
courts. However, you may also request mediation
prior to seeking a court resolution to
the problem. Contact the District
Court's Alternative Dispute Resolution
(Phone: 410 -260-1676)