Niagara Mediation provides services where litigation is pending, threatened or even foreseeable.
You should consider mediation if there is a dispute involving the following:
- Estate trustees;
- Those that may be beneficiaries under a will;
- Co-owners of rental units, cottages, or other property;
- The true individual attorney(s) under powers of attorney;
- Incapable persons and issues of personal care or property management.
- Family Facilitation Services for challenging estate planning situations.
In the estates context, mediation is an attractive alternative to litigation for many reasons. Mediation is cost effective and much faster than litigation. Estates not only have legal issues that need to be resolved, but also emotional issues that must be addressed.
Estate matters often contain loss, sibling rivalry, feelings of anger, jealously and greed. As the parties are often family members, mediation can provide the first step in improving the lines of communication between the parties and in turn fostering a positive relationship, while litigation is more likely to increase the acrimony between the disputants.
When a mediation is successful it produces a negotiated settlement agreement between the parties. This agreement is one agreed to by the parties, not imposed on them. Frequently, mediations end with the parties signing “minutes of settlement” which will outline their rights and responsibilities. One of the great strengths of mediation is the flexibility of the potential settlements, which can often address issues very differently from the remedies available to a judge.
Mediation works particularly well for estate disputes as:
- The parties usually know each other,
- The parties usually know most of the facts of the case quite well,
- The parties often have issues and objectives that are quite different from the strict confines of ‘the law’,
- The parties often have non-monetary issues that require non-monetary solutions,
- Issues can be resolved in ways that no judge could or would impose, and
- The cost of litigation are borne by the parties, and thus they have an incentive to settle.