Perfect attendance?

Inquiring minds want to know :

Does every member of a party have to be present in order to hold a scheduled mediation?  Our party has 3 members and one is unable to attend.

Kris Responds:


Not necessarily; but that is optimal.  It really depends on how crucial the absent party’s presence is to the agreement.  Some mediations are held with a party available by phone or other contact.  Some agree to a proxy representation.  Others may have some approval role but a non-participatory role. Here’s what can happen if a crucial party is not present:  the present parties can work through the various positions and interests represented by each and even address the interests of the absent party, but when it is agreement time, since the absent party wasn’t privy to the detail, they may or may not be able to ‘buy-in” to the final agreement and become a barrier to the implementation.  If the agreement is being approached in good faith, then all parties want to have input, involvement and some ‘say’ in how the process happens and its results.  But, in answer to your question, there are creative options other than all parties being in attendance.



Date: 1/06/2009

Posted by: Kris Donley