Familiarity with rules, codes:
Counsel and parties should be familiar with applicable provisions of the Local Rules, California Rules of Court, Evidence Code and Code of Civil Procedure, and where applicable, corresponding provisions of Federal law.
Mediation briefs or position papers are preferred because they can contribute to more productive, often shorter,mediation sessions. At least four (4) business days before the mediation, please provide me and all participants with a summary of your position. It is important that this statement be delivered sufficiently in advance of the mediation to allow full consideration by the other side - principals as well as counsel. If for some unusual reason you do not intend to provide a copy to opposing counsel, please let me know so that we can discuss it in advance of the mediation. There is no required format for the briefs (e.g., they may be in the form of a letter) and they may be provided to me by mail or by e-mail (in Word or PDF format only). A suggested outline for a brief is to include an identification of the parties, a statement of disputed and undisputed facts, the issues to be decided by the trier of fact, the party’s position and supporting applicable law, the party’s understanding of the opposing party’s position and supporting authority, damages (with computations), and the status of negotiations and any previous efforts to settle or resolve the dispute. Because I might discuss any portion of an unserved brief with any other party, any information in the brief which a party does not want disclosed should be clearly identified as such or, preferably, included instead in a supplement to the brief clearly identified for non-disclosure.
Attendance at mediation session, full/additional settlement authority:
All parties and decision-makers must attend the mediation and must remain present to participate in the mediation until the conclusion of the mediation. If an insurance carrier is involved, a claims representative with appropriate authority must attend the mediation and must remain present to participate in the mediation until the conclusion of the mediation. Because information is often developed at a mediation which can affect parties’ evaluations of the case, the representative who attends must have, until the conclusion of the mediation, telephonic access to the ultimate decision maker needed to provide additional authority. If a governmental entity is involved and any agreement requires approval by an elected official or legislative body, a representative with authority to recommend such an agreement must attend the mediation and must remain present to participate in the mediation until the conclusion of the mediation.
Releases, settlement agreements:
Any party who will require as a part of any resolution the execution of a release and/or settlement agreement is encouraged to bring such document(s), completed to the fullest extent possible, to the mediation.