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Mediation Family Law Employment Law

How Mediators Can Help Parties Overcome Emotional Barriers

There are many externalities — considerations having nothing to do with the merits of a case — that often will influence the parties' ability to settle their dispute. In my experience, foremost among these are the emotions that the parties bring to the dispute.

They are present in virtually every case. Plaintiffs who view the dispute through the prism of their emotional feelings about what happened typically will overvalue their case. They might feel no amount of money can fairly compensate them for what the other side have forced them to go through. Conversely, defendants who look at a case emotionally will undervalue the case, likely thinking, "I am not paying someone who has said these terrible things about me and my company."

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