The increasingly vital craft of mediation and interest-based negotiation is the focus of the School of Law’s Mediation Clinic; working on cases referred by local courts or other mediation agencies, students help resolve disputes in family law, small claims and the community.
Mediation is becoming an extensively utilized dispute resolution tool as Federal and State Courts establish mediation referral programs and as clients are increasingly hiring private sector mediators to avoid costly court battles and to maximize results. The best way to understand mediation is to actually be in the mediator’s chair with real parties. It is vital that new lawyers are cognizant of what mediation is all about, whether they want to possibly make mediation part of their future law practices, or simply know enough to effectively advise and assist their clients at mediation sessions.
Our newest initiative, Virtual Small Claims Mediation Program, helps parties settle their small claims disputes. The Clinic offers free, confidential mediation sessions through videoconferencing to those who wish to participate.
If you wish to are participate, please contact us through our Small Claims Interest Form.
The Mediation Clinic is an experiential course that allows students to hone their mediation skills to an advanced level by mediating disputes with actual parties in disputes.
Students observe and conduct mediations in several areas, including: family law, small claims, community and/or other disputes referred by local courts and/or other community mediation resources. Students are supervised and, periodically, videotaped to maximize their skill development and understanding of the process.
In this clinic, students are also involved in observations of various alternative dispute resolution processes both in and out of court, centering primarily on mediation.
This course meets weekly, during which students will conduct mediation role-plays, work on skill building, mediate real cases at Small Claims Court and/or share experiences and discuss the issues arising in their mediations and other course experiences.