Held Hostage by a Torturous Claim? How to Escape

Do you feel like you and your clients are hostage to a claim that goes on and on? Every treatment request triggers a new round of litigation. The injury happened decades ago, and the disability percentage still has not finalized. The parties are at each other’s throats. You can use tips from professional hostage negotiators […]

Is Mediation Effective in Workers’ Comp?

Babe Ruth’s lifetime batting average was .342. Studies in states with a history of workers’ compensation mediation suggest your success rate with it is likely to be a whole lot better. In Florida, parties must mediate workers’ compensation claims within 130 days of the filing of a petition for benefits. Results for the fiscal year ended June […]

Winning the Zero Sum Game

Value-Added Negotiating Many negotiators approach resolution as a zero sum game. Each side’s gain or loss is exactly equal to the other party’s gain or loss. Viewing the resources available as limited can obstruct getting to settlement. Particularly when one or more parties have hit their dollar authority limit, adding non-monetary benefits to the discussion creates a […]

FOBO Paralysis

Most of us have seen, and maybe used, the acronym FOMO. It means Fear of Missing Out. FOMO is the fear of making the wrong decision about how to spend your time, particularly after you’ve seen internet stories about others doing better.  Negotiation FOBOThe related condition in negotiation is FOBO, Fear Of Better Options. Fear that […]

A Mediation Story

The claim was decades old; indemnity was supposedly fully paid. The carrier hadn’t paid a medical bill in years. The applicant had dismissed her attorney, but continued to pursue the claim. The carrier wanted the claim off the books, so they called me. Without prompting, the adjuster disclosed his authority limit to me in an email. The applicant, […]

Four Necessities for Mediation Success

These four attributes are integral to an effective mediation. FairnessThe process and the person conducting the process must be fair. What’s more, all participants must perceive them as fair. Mediation is a level playing field. This safe, neutral environment is a good place to test the validity of an argument. The mediator is a professional neutral. Without preconceptions, […]

New Mediation Disclosure Law

Effective January 1, 2019, California attorneys must provide a written mediation disclosure statement to clients or face potential disciplinary consequences. What Does the New Law Do?The disclosure does not protect clients so much as inform them about mediation confidentiality. Under changes to the Evidence Code, attorneys must have clients sign off on a mediation disclosure […]

Litigation Status Reports from the Confederate States of America

THINGS ARE GOING GREAT – LET’S KEEP FIGHTING The fall of Atlanta “is not a calamity that endangers our cause.” Montgomery, Alabama Advertiser, September 1864   “No former period of the war has contained such elements of encouragement for the South as the present.” Richmond, Virginia Examiner, February 1865, 60 days before the surrender at Appomattox   Many […]

Mediation Phases

Like the moon, mediation proceeds in phases. Here’s a primer on what happens when. Phase 1: Investigation The first phase of a mediation consists of fact gathering and defining the issues. When the parties provide exhaustive briefs, time spent on fact-finding may be minimal. We can quickly pin down which facts and issues the parties agree […]

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