Our Mediation Ethics

Mediation is a non-binding process where a third-party neutral mediator mutually resolves a dispute between two parties. Our dedicated mediators at Lerner Conflict Resolution Center will abide by the following mediation ethics in every case.

Lerner Conflict Resolution Center Mediation Ethics

#1. A mediator must ensure that all the disputing parties understand the mediation process, the mediator’s role, and settlement terms.
A mediator must ensure that all the parties involved in the mediation process understand the nature of mediation. They must know the role of the mediator in the process and should be made aware of their neutral relationship with both parties. The mediator must make sure both parties have a clear understanding of the terms of settlement, and if need be, the mediator must suggest the parties take further specialist counsel. The mediator must have the full consent of both parties during the mediation process. If the mediator believes that a party cannot give informed consent for any reason during the mediation process, the mediation proceedings should be discontinued. If during the mediation process, the mediator cannot remain neutral due to binding arbitration, the parties must be informed and allowed to choose another mediator to proceed with the resolution process.

#2. A mediator must ensure all involved parties undertake the mediation process voluntarily.
A proper mediation process is one where both disputing parties come to a voluntary agreement. Protecting the rights and interests of both parties is something the mediator should strive for at all times. There are cases where the mediator might find that a party is being coerced by an external element, for example, a family member or confidant. In that event, the mediator should try to inform all the present parties about the situation and further deliberate if the mediation process should continue. Mediations that are ordered by the court cannot be entirely voluntary. A mediator should give due consideration to this fact and carry on the mediation process to the utmost satisfaction of the parties involved.

#3. A mediator should be competent in dealing with the specific dispute resolution.
The mediator must study the dispute before mediation and be self-aware of their abilities. A mediator must only mediate on matters where they feel knowledgeable about the pertinent procedural and substantive issues and is completely well-versed with the subject matter. Also, the mediator must withdraw from the meditation process if, at some point, they feel they cannot physically, emotionally or intellectually meet the expectations of the clientele.

#4. A mediator should ensure the mediation process is private and confidential.
The mediator must make sure to protect the confidentiality of the mediation process. The mediator must not use sensitive information obtained during the mediation process to gain a personal advantage or benefit a third party. If meditation is court-ordered and the rules of law require the mediator to disclose certain information, then the mediator must only disclose the requisite information.

#5. A mediator should be impartial under all circumstances.
A mediator should be impartial throughout the mediation process. A mediator must avoid forming any bias based on the party’s background, personality, and behavior. Any pre-existing knowledge of the dispute must not influence the mediator’s neutrality. The mediator must not accept any kind of favors, be it financial or otherwise, which might question their neutrality. The mediator must avoid conflicts of interest.

#6. A mediator must not give legal advice.
The mediator must refrain from giving legal advice to one or both parties. The mediator must avoid forming legal opinions about any parties in the meditation process. A competent mediator must understand the difference between neutral suggestions and legal advice. If during the mediation process, a mediator does offer legal advice, then it should be done with prior permission, and the other party should be advised to get legal representation as necessary.

#7. A mediator must withdraw under some circumstances.
A mediator must make sure to voluntarily withdraw from the mediation process if they find that the mediation will be used for illegal purposes; if they discover there is no informed consent; if the mediator is unable to remain unbiased; if there is a conflict of interest; or if one or both parties are involved in activities that harm the integrity of the mediation.

#8. A mediator must not guarantee any results and should not involve in misleading marketing.
The mediator must be honest in their communication and must not guarantee favorable results. They should, in no circumstances, favor one party over the other or have a personal agenda that supersedes the clients’ interests. The mandate of the mediator is to act as an unbiased, neutral figure during mediation, and facilitate conditions that help the parties to the dispute arrive at a mutually acceptable resolution.

Our Divorce Mediators are Ready to Help You Find a Fair Resolution

If you are contemplating a divorce or have already filed for it in California, we encourage you to consider the path of divorce mediation to resolve conflict quickly and without the undue stress and expense of litigation.