Is Mediation the same as Litigation?
No. In litigation, the final event (the court trial) has a neutral third person (the Judge). Upon hearing all the evidence that he/she has permitted to be admissible, the Judge decides the truth and allocates who was at fault. Once the parties enter into the litigation process, they lose control of the process. They can not back out easily unless they get agreement from the other party and, if they could agree, they would most probably not be there in the first place. The process also involves the pleadings back and forth to frame the dispute and the "ferreting out" out the facts supporting each disputant's claims. "The truth" that the Judge establishes may be a result of the skill of the lawyers representing the parties. The uncertainty of this process can sometimes necessitate settlement of the dispute at the eleventh hour on the court house steps. Unfortunately, the settlement, if this happens, occurs only after substantial costs have already been incurred and may not be what any of the parties actually desire.