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Mediation Protocol

Conflict generally causes stress and most likely ends up costing money. When disputes arise, mediate don’t litigate.


  • Mediation allows you control over your disputes.
  • Mediation reduces the uncertainty litigation brings.
  • Mediation can save you thousands of dollars.
  • Mediation is cost-effective and can save time.


Getting to settlement is a process that requires many stages. Litigation should be the last resort. Let Rita Lauria help you save money and resolve your conflict.







Disputes Mediated


It doesn’t matter what kind of dispute you face.  Whether you are involved in a lawsuit or merely in a conflict with another party, mediation can help to settle the dispute. Mediation is an alternative to litigation Mediation is faster, cheaper, and allows control over the matter.


For a representative list of the types of cases Rita Lauria mediates see the EXPERTISE page. This list is not exhaustive. Contact Rita Lauria to discuss your case no matter what type of conflict you face.



Agreement to Mediate


Generally mediations begin when both of the parties or their representatives agree to participate and contact the Mediator to schedule mediation. If both parties have not yet agreed to participate in mediation, Rita Lauria and her staff at Metalaw®.ME Mediation can assist you. We will contact the other party and assist in getting agreement to mediate. Call Metalaw®.ME Mediation. Give the names, addresses, email addresses, fax and phone numbers of the parties you seek to bring to the mediation table. Our staff will contact the parties and assist with arriving at agreement to mediate.





Fees for mediation at Metalaw®.ME Mediation are fair and competitive. Rita Lauria tries to give back to the community what she has been given. She may take cases on a sliding scale, depending on the type of case and the circumstances. Call Metalaw®.ME Mediation to discuss hourly, half-day, and full day rates.



Scheduling Mediation


All parties involved in the dispute must agree to participate in the mediation. After obtaining the agreement to mediate by all parties, a date to mediate will be scheduled. Each party must come willing and able to work towards resolution. This means the individual on each side with the authority to settle must be at the mediation. In some instances, if this is not possible for the individual(s) with full authority to settle to be at the mediation, the Mediator has the discretion to permit attendance by phone. To schedule mediation Go to the DOCUMENTS page. There you will find three (3) important documents.


  1. The Mediation Agreement. Download the Mediation Agreement.  This document explains the Mediation Process. Read it. Sign it to retain Rita Lauria to mediate your case, and return the Mediation Agreement to Metalaw®.ME.

  2. Once agreement to mediate occurs and a date is set, you will receive a letter of Mediation Confirmation Agreement. This document outlines the time, date, place of the mediation, and the parties involved. This document also outlines the policies on fees, rescheduling and cancellation, and the mediation brief. Download the Mediation Confirmation Agreement for review.

  3. All parties to the dispute, in addition to agreeing to participate, must also execute the Mediation Confidentiality Agreement. Download the Confidentiality Agreement from the Documents page. Be prepared to sign and execute this agreement at the mediation.



Mediation Briefs


While mediation briefs are suggested, Rita Lauria does not require these briefs to conduct the mediation. However, if either party would like to submit a short Mediation Brief, these can be submitted to the Mediator alone for confidential review or may be exchanged with the other party. Briefs and exhibits should be exchanged and submitted by email preferably at least 5 days prior to the scheduled mediation. See the Mediation Confirmation document for an explanation of the contents that should be given in the Mediation Brief.



During the Mediation

Rita Lauria generally starts the mediation with a joint session. All participants will introduce themselves and affirm the Confidentiality Agreement is understood and signed. The Mediator may briefly explain the mediation process and answer any questions. The mediation then moves to brief discussion of the status of the issue and the history of any prior settlement discussions.


Next, the parties may choose to give an Opening Statement. This Opening Statement can be very informal and presented in any way the parties choose. The goal of an Opening Statement is to inform all present regarding the determinative issues of the dispute. After the Opening Statement of each party, the Mediator will summarize the issues of the case from the perspective of the parties. This then sets the agenda for the mediation discussion.


Typically, the Mediator will "caucus" with each side.  This means the parties split into separate, private spaces. The Mediator meets separating with the parties to discuss the issues.  During caucus, all information gathered by the Mediator is confidential and privileged. The Mediator will not disclose this confidential information to opposing parties without prior consent.


These private caucus sessions allow the Mediator to talk openly with each party. The Mediator gathers facts, explores settlement options, helps facilitate creative solutions, and acts to move the separate interests of the parties closer together. During caucus the Mediator may gather information, evaluate some of this information, point out weaknesses and/or strengths in a party’s position, or suggest how to get to settlement. Each Mediator generally has her or his own style. Rita Lauria uses a hybrid of evaluative, facilitative, and transformative techniques to bring the parties closer together towards settlement.


After privately caucusing, the Mediator will bring the parties back together again for discussion. The process can repeat as many times as necessary to get the disputed issues identified and the interests of the parties clear. The goal is to bring the interests of the parties closer together in their dispute.



Rita M. Lauria of Metalaw®.ME Mediation


As a Mediator, Rita Lauria acts to facilitate settlement. Her style is to allow people to own their negotiation strategies. When parties believe they develop their own negotiation, they feel they own the outcome. When a settlement is reached, Rita Lauria as Mediator will summarize the terms of the agreement and assist as necessary in memorializing its terms and conditions. If the mediation needs follow-up to reach settlement, Rita Lauria will do what it takes to resolve the matter and stay out of court. Let Rita Lauria of Metalaw®.ME Mediation help you effectively settle your dispute.