Answer: Mediation is simply a process whereby you and your attorney, and the opposing attorney, and sometimes a representative from your employer and/or a representative from the workers compensation carrier get together with one of the Deputy Commissioners, who acts as a neutral third party, or mediator. This usually takes place at the Commission Hearing room near where you reside.
It is very important to realize that the mediator does not have the power to make any decisions with respect to your case. His or her job is merely to facilitate the two sides getting together to try to resolve your claim.
When we go to mediation, we make sure that we choose Commissioner who has a reputation for working to resolve workers compensation cases, and not favoring the other side. It is our job to familiarize you with the process and present your claim in the best light possible.
We do a short presentation to the mediator of the facts relating to your case, and then the side has their turn. We then split up into different rooms, and begin the negotiation process. We have found this process to be especially effective in resolving cases, with 75-90% of all cases settling at mediation.