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Q. Who makes the initial contact with the mediator?
A. The parities can chose between themselves who will get information from the mediator, set up an appointment and advise the other party.

Q. Who pays for the mediation.
A. Customarily the cost of the mediation is divided equally. However, other arrangements, as long as they are agreed upon by both parties, can also be made.

Q. What should I take to the mediation?
A. Take any documents (statements, invoices, photographs, etc.) that will help you to explain your situation.

Q. How can I prepare for the mediation?
A. Think about what will be important for you to discuss with the other party. Asking yourself the following questions may be helpful;
What will be important to tell the other party that they may not know now?
What would be the best / worst result of the mediation for me?
What might be a realistic resolution to the dispute?

Q. What will happen in mediation?
A. The mediators and the parties will sit at a table in the Mediation Conference Room. You and the other party will have the opportunity to talk about whatís happened and whatís important to you. Youíll talk about ways your disagreements might be resolved. Sometimes resolution includes compromises but not always. Mediators will ask questions, try to help clarify issues and make sure each party is heard, understood and acknowledged.

Any agreement you reach in mediation is voluntary. You wonít be required to agree to anything unless you want to.

Whatever is said in mediation (any offers, etc.) cannot be used as evidence should your case proceed to Court.

If you reach a proposed agreement, you may want to think about it for a day or two. You may also want to talk to a family member, spouse, friend or attorney before you make a final decision.

If you resolve your case through mediation, all parties will sign an agreement and the case will not proceed to Court.

Mediations generally last from 30 minutes to two hours.

Q. What if The Other Party Does Not Keep the Agreement?
A. Most times people follow through on mediated agreements and uphold their part of the agreement. However, if this doesnít happen, you may file a complaint against the other party in the Taos County Magistrate Court. You would file a Motion to Enforce the Mediated Agreement. A short hearing will then be set before the judge assigned to your case. The judge will decide if the agreement should be enforced.

Q. What if Mediation Does Not Resolve My dispute?
A. You may choose to file a formal complaint in the Taos County Magistrate Court. After following their procedures your case will then be sent to the judge and set for hearing. Even if you didnít reach an agreement in mediation you have had the opportunity to talk about the situation and you may be better prepared in Court.

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Last updated 14 December 05. All rights reserved.