The following guidelines are only suggestions for the mediation conference and are not intended to restrict the flexibility that is necessary for successful mediation. Failure to follow the guidelines does not affect an agreement otherwise acceptable to all parties.
. At the mediation conference, the Mediator advises the parties that the purpose of the conference is to afford them a place to amicably resolve the dispute themselves and thus to avoid an interboard arbitration hearing where they will have no control over the decision handed down by the arbitrators.
. The Mediator may ask the complainant the nature of the dispute and/or what he/she is claiming, e.g. the dollar amount claimed and the basis for the claim.
. The Mediator may then ask the respondent why he/she feels the claim should be denied.
. The Mediator encourages the parties to discuss the disputed matter(s) and executes control only as needed. Communication between the parties is vitally important and encouraged.
. The Mediator may pull each party into a private discussion or caucus where he/she can note the strengths and weaknesses of each party‘s argument and discuss these with the parties.
. The Mediator may also point out the alternative to a mediated settlement - arbitration - where the parties have no control over the amount of the award.
. Styles of Mediators may vary. The Mediators will place open communications amongst the parties foremost, thus optimally enabling the parties to craft their own resolution to the dispute.
. If the parties agree on a settlement, the Mediator reduces their agreement to writing and has each party sign a Mediation Agreement and Stipulated Arbitration Award. C.A.R. is notified that arbitration will not be necessary.