How Mediation Can Unlock the Key to Winning Your Case: A Personal Story

Mediations don’t always lead to resolution. Still, they can offer new insights about the other party or the issue. This new information could be vital in reaching an agreement later on. It might even help in cross-examining a witness during trial.

Let me share a story.

My client had a wrongful death case. The defendant County made an insultingly low settlement offer of $20K. We decided to mediate before the trial, hoping to settle and find closure. After eight hours of negotiation, no resolution came.

My clients considered the mediation a waste of time. I didn’t.


During the negotiations, the defense attorney mentioned something new. It hadn’t come up in four years of litigation and discovery. His remark seemed irrelevant to most, but it gave me insight. It showed me why he was placing so much importance on what I knew was a non-existent issue.

I used this knowledge during the trial. I focused on this issue, which I might have overlooked without the mediation.

The result?

The jury returned with a multi-million dollar verdict after two weeks. They said their decision hinged on that one issue I learned during the mediation.

So, the mediation, though not successful immediately, was crucial to winning the case.

Yes, I’m a fan of mediation. So much so that after 37 years of litigating and trying cases, I’m making the transition to being a private mediator.

I’m excited about this next step in my career.

If you have a dispute that needs to be resolved, consider mediation.

I’m here if you need me.


“The harder you work, the luckier you get.” -Gary Player

“The harder you work, the luckier you get.” -Gary Player

In 2017, I had just finished representing a client at a Mandatory Settlement Conference at the Orange County Superior Court. Walking through the lobby on the first floor, I was approached by a stranger.

He asked, “Are you a lawyer? If so, can I ask you a quick question?”

With my curiosity piqued, we chatted for a few minutes and I steered the conversation in a helpful direction, offering guidance and advice. Grateful for the support, he asked for my contact information before inquiring about my experience as a lawyer.

On the drive back to the office, I took a moment to reflect on the specifics of my legal career. Arriving at my desk, I started crunching the numbers beginning with first client and jury trial way back in 1986.

Together with my partner, Lisa Wilson, these were the combined numbers back in 2017. All I can say is time flies when you’re having fun!

✅ 124,800 hours of combined experience practicing law (the real number is more);

✅ 2,640 hours of combined court and jury trials. This number jumps up to 5,200+ if you take pre-trial preparation and litigation into consideration;

✅ 2,000 hours of combined mediations and arbitrations (again, probably more);

What a crazy ride it’s been!

Looking back, Gary had it right. The more we do something the luckier we get!

I’m now available for private mediation and arbitration. Details here.

Answers to the Top 20 Questions About Mediation

Here are the top 20 questions, along with answers, consumers have about mediation. We hope you find this information helpful. For more information, visit our 24/7 AI mediation and negotiation chat bot.

#1: What is mediation?

Mediation is a facilitative method of dispute resolution where a neutral third party, the mediator, assists disputing parties in reaching a mutually acceptable agreement. It emphasizes understanding, collaboration, and agreement over confrontation and winning.

#2: How is mediation different from going to court?

Mediation differs from litigation in that it encourages cooperative problem-solving, whereas litigation involves an adversarial process with a judge or jury making the final decision. This fosters understanding and can maintain relationships.

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10 Top Reasons To Mediate Your Next Business Dispute

Do you believe litigation is your only option? Think again. Here are 10 reasons why mediation could be your best first step towards a mutually beneficial win-win dispute resolution.

To add a bit of context to this post, I’ve been meditating, litigating and trying cases for more than three decades. During this time I’ve been reminded over and over about how mediation is a powerful tool to quickly and easily amicably resolve disputes. In fact, I’m so impressed with many of the mediation outcomes we’ve been able to obtain for clients that I wanted to share these 10 powerful advantages of mediating disputes with you.

#1 Cost Efficiency: Mediation generally costs significantly less than litigation. It allows parties to avoid hefty court fees and the expense of discovery, expert witnesses, and other litigation costs.

#2 Time Savings: Legal battles can take months or even years to resolve. Mediation, on the other hand, can often result in an agreement within a few sessions, saving both parties significant time.

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