Hal Abramson is a professor of law at the Touro Law Center in Huntington, N.Y. He is also a mediator and arbitrator of domestic and international disputes. He serves on the mediation panels of the American Arbitration Association, the CPR Institute for Dispute Resolution, and the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. He can be reached by e-mail at Hala@Tourolaw.edu.
In a new book entitled Mediation Representation: Advocating in a Problem-Solving Process (NITA 2004), from which this article is adapted, Hal Abramson developed a practical, mediation-representation formula for attorneys advocating in mediation as a problem-solving process. Among other things, the formula includes how to satisfy the client’s interests and overcome impediments to settlement, and knowing how, during key junctures in the mediation, to enlist the assistance of the mediator while negotiating with the other side. To obtain a copy of the book, call 800-225-6482 or visit the NITA Web site at www.nita.org.
The mediation process is indisputably different from other dispute resolution processes. Therefore, the strategies and techniques that have proven so effective in settlement conferences, arbitration and litigation do not work as well in mediation. The familiar adversarial strategy of presenting the strongest partisan arguments and aggressively attacking the other side's case may be effective in court where each side is trying to convince a judge to make a favorable decision.