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Mediation is a voluntary process to resolve a conflict including the parties involved with the help of a neutral third-party, the mediator. The mediator does not make a decision or judgment, they are there to facilitate the conversation between the parties to help them come up with a resolution of their own.
Parties might choose mediation over litigation for a variety of reasons. Mediation often offers those involved faster results at a lower cost than going through the process of hiring an attorney or paying for filing fees. Additionally, mediation allows the parties to control the process and the solution, rather than relying on a judge to make a ruling that neither party agrees to.
Mediation is usually available for many non-criminal cases. Mediation is often the best choice for cases that either do not involve large sums of money or do not involve substantial legal issues. These disputes can range from disputes between business partners to arguments between neighbors.
Yes, mediation is confidential. Prior to beginning the mediation, all parties, including the mediator, will sign a confidentiality agreement.
The length of the mediation process varies and depends upon the complexity of the relationship of the parties. An initial mediation session is usually scheduled for one hour.
Yes. We provide mediators at no cost during the Small Claims, Unlawful Detainer, and Civil Harassment Departments on the day of trial. The mediator will make an announcement at the beginning of the Court session.
For non-Court connected cases, the first hour of mediation and all case work is no cost. Each additional hour is $25 per party per hour.
While you do not need to be a resident of San Joaquin County, one party must be a resident (or business owner, if the business is a party) of San Joaquin County.
We are funded through the Dispute Resolution Programs Act (DRPA), which is funded through San Joaquin County Superior Court Civil filing fees.
A mediation skills training program is available to individuals, business, and other organizations in San Joaquin County.