The administration process of a trust, estate or guardianship can be very difficult, especially when it is being challenged. While litigation is often the first solution that comes to mind in matters of trust, estate and guardianship disputes, mediation may present a beneficial alternative to a long and expensive court battle. A Sugar Land trust, estates, and guardianship mediation lawyer may be able to assist you in finding an alternative resolution to your dispute.
Paul Romano and Kenny Sumner are certified Sugar Land mediators and have over 35 years of combined litigation experience. Romano & Sumner focus their practices on litigation matters concerning probate, estates, trusts, and guardianships and have the knowledge and skills to assist you in reaching a beneficial resolution to your dispute.
Mediation is a non-binding process where opposing parties attempt to settle a dispute without court intervention. The goal is to reach a resolution that is agreeable to all parties and that will eliminate the need for any further legal action. The mediator serves as an impartial third party who facilitates communication between the parties to reach a settlement.
Mediations are less expensive than trials and most sessions last from 4 to 8 hours. While the mediator cannot force the parties to settle their case, courts will often recommend mediation as a means to settle a case prior to trial. The mediation process is confidential, and the mediator cannot reveal details of the mediation to the court.
There are many distinct advantages to choosing mediation vs. litigating a trust, estate, or guardianship dispute. One of the most obvious advantages is that mediation takes far less time and money than if the dispute were to go to trial. Some mediations may even take less than a day to complete. When one considers that a traditional court case can take anywhere from months to a few years to reach a final resolution, mediation may be preferable in many cases.
Another significant benefit to mediation is that both parties can communicate their concerns and differences in the hopes of reaching a mutual resolution. The litigation process is distinctly adversarial, and, in the end, the final decision is up to the whims of the judge or jury. In mediation, you control the outcome of the dispute by working toward a mutually agreeable solution.
Neither party is under any legal obligation to settle during mediation. If settlement discussions do not prove fruitful at mediation, the parties can proceed to trial if they wish.
Another distinct quality of mediation that can make it an attractive alternative to litigation is that the events are off the record. In other words, the proceedings are kept confidential and are not a matter of public record. A Sugar land attorney can help you determine whether mediation may be beneficial in resolving your trust, estate, or guardianship dispute.
The role of a mediator is to encourage healthy discussions and navigate the negotiation between the individuals to help them achieve a resolution that is satisfactory to all parties. Throughout the day of the mediation, each party will meet individually with the mediator, as well as together as they try to hammer out a solution.
Since mediation is far more flexible than litigation, it is impossible to present an ironclad process of mediation in a step-by-step format. However, the following is a generalized, flexible list of what happens in a typical mediation:
A Sugar Land trust, estates, and guardianship mediation lawyer can help you determine whether this process could be utilized for your case. For more information about the mediation process, contact our office today and ask to speak with the legal professionals at Romano & Sumner.
Romano & Sumner, PLLC