Comments: Should A Mediator Also Be An Attorney?

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Liz , 38.000000 CA   06/30/11
Mediators -Lawyers and "Not"
Sorry for the mis-spell "Cris".

Liz , 38.000000 CA     06/30/11
Mediators -Lawyers and "Not"
I am a student about to receive a Master of Arts degree in psychology with a specialty in ADR/Mediation. I am very pleased I "ran across" this article it is saying/confirming the very thoughts I have had in reference to mediators and attorney-mediators. Thank you Chris.

Paula Young, Grundy VA     12/21/07
What od Non-Lawyer (sorry) Mediators Bring to the Table?
I am writing a law review article on the unauthorized practice of law by (sorry) non-lawyer mediators. I had hoped to find additional citations that show why the field and parties benefit when mediators have diversity in their skills, backgrounds, professions of origin, and training. Short of bona fide article citations, I'd like to start a conversation about why we think thistype of diversity is important to the field. We talk about cultural diversity a lot, but not about background/skill diversity. I am specifically responding to a comment that one of my faculty colleagues made: Don't you solve the UPL problem by making all mediators lawyers? I feel certain that many of the UPL regulators feel the same. Anyone familiar with the conversation that happened in Florida over the use of non-lawyer mediators in court-connected cases? Thanks.

Aaron , Boston MA   04/16/07
Should Mediators be Lawyers?
Branden and Paula - I am a law student at Boston University School of Law and am writing a paper on this exacat topic. Would any of you care to share your paper, bibliography, citations, and/or sources? Thanks...

Paula , Gresham OR   10/19/05
Brandon in Denver, I am writing a paper on this topic as well. Would you be willing to share your bibliography with me? Thanks.

Branden , Denver CO   07/10/03
I am taking a mediation course at Regis University and I chose this very topic to write my long paper on. After looking through numerous publications and ethics laws on mediation, your article said what I wasn't sure how to put into words. How could an attorney remain neutral when somehow he feels that one party possibly ilegally dominating the other? Excellent article Chris!

Tim    07/17/02
Addressing issues in mediation.
Lawyers are concerned with past evidence - who did what to whom. Psychologists address immediate concerns, but it is the job of mediators to help disputants build a viable future for themselves, often working together, particularly if the third-parties are children. Driving an auto looking only in the rear-view mirror would be dangerous! Dealing only with the roadside is safer, but really, the point of the journey is not to travel hopefully, but arrive at some desirable destination. Of course lawyers and other professionals have a contribution, but making peace is a difficult, often messy business with plenty of 'unprofessional' emotion, even hatred, in the equation. Did you ever know two litigants who could work together after judgement? Well that is how I measure success (mediators do not, of course judge).

Kevin Winegardner, Kalispell MT     01/29/02
To JD or Not to JD, is that really the question?
A hotly debated topic indeed! Thank you Cris for an extremely well written, (I believe), article. Your observation that the, 'definition' of mediation means different things to different people is exemplified in the few responses posted here. I hope that we can all find a way to agree that as Mediators, whether JD or not, that facilitating mutual understanding, respect for differences of opinion, and creating integrative durable agreements, are some of the more noble goals of our chosen vocation. For my part I have great respect for the Attorneys that I know. I am not an Attorney but I hope to work cooperatively and closely with them in many future mediations. I believe that respect and care of our clients demands it. Thank you.

BRENDA , Oakland CA   01/10/02
Attorney mediators often get in the way of parties' successfully resolving a case in ways that meet their needs as opposed to the needs of the mediator. Often attorney mediators are inclined to "hammer out" a settlement agreement that is best for the mediator -- another success notch in the belt. Parties leave these mediations feeling that they have not been heard and that even though they may have an agreement in hand, the party has no personal sense of resolution or understanding, recognition or empowerment. Non-attorneys who practice facilitative, rather than directive, mediation can have more impact on the parties by advancing the parties' interests, desires, goals, and issues. The outcome is often more positive in nature and agreements have benefits above and beyond those laid out in a written agreement.

Raye , Atlanta Ga   02/20/01
I find it amazing that anyone can put forth the notion that most conflicts or disputes have a legal context. Think about it. Did you really mean most?

Gregory , College Station TX     02/12/01
I am also a mediator in TX. Although I will be attending law school next year, I have found that some of the best mediators do not have a law background. By involving the lawyers in the process, a mediator can be successful without legal expertise. This gives the mediator freedom to explore emotional avenues as well as legal issues that may need to be addressed.

mark , fredericksburg te   02/02/01
non-attorney vs. attorney mediators
i am a texas attorney and trained mediator who believes that a legal education is the very minimum requirement for being a mediator because most , if not all, conflict arises within a legal context. i have witnessed non-lawyer mediators encourage (unintentionally) agreements that are not only unlawful but criminal especially under the federal r.i.c.o statutes. a very dangerous thing indeed.