When a client cannot handle a matter themselves, I can resolve the problem by communicating with the employer on behalf of the client. This can occur whether the employee has been terminated or continues to work for the employer. Often employer’s are willing to resolve matters efficiently without the need for litigation.
Negotiation and Settlement
Conflict resolution, whether accomplished by an exchange of letters, arbitration, mediation, or a lawsuit in court, usually ends with a settlement agreement. An attorney is usally better able than a client to negotiate a settlement agreement because of experience and knowledge. A settlement agreement can have a life long effect. It is important to know when a settlement agreement is not going to work. Effective negotiation may require litigation to reach an acceptable result.
Many disputes can be resolved in consensual mediation where the parties meet and reach a voluntary agreement with the assistance of the mediator. A mediator is neutral facilitator, who does not make a decision or take sides. The cost of mediation varies widely and the cost is usually split between the mediating parties.
Legal proceedings may occur before an administrative body, in court, before an arbitrator, or in mediation. Litigation must be cost effective. A client must have a realistic understanding of the risks and benefits of litigation. Ultimately, it is the client who must decide what to do. The attorney’s job is inform the client of available options and strategies. Both attorney and client need to make an informed commitment to litigation, whatever form it takes. In some cases the employee and the employer have entered into an agreement whereby all disputes must be resolved in arbitration.