Services

 

Services

In a mediation, the mediator is a neutral third person involved in confidential settlement discussions between disputing parties. The mediator assists the parties in discovering options to resolve the dispute. As an alternative to litigation, mediation has many benefits. The process is often very effective, remains confidential, and involves great savings in time and cost, compared to litigation.

Most importantly, the parties to a mediation exercise control over the resolution of the dispute. This control over the outcome does not exist at trial, whether with a jury or a judge making the decisions. AusTex Mediation strives to encourage the parties to exercise control over the dispute so that the matter can be resolved amicably, without extending the many negative aspects of litigation on the parties and the relationship of the parties.

Texas Rule of Civil Procedure 169 (d)(4) provides for mediation in expedited cases. AusTex Mediation will work with you in establishing a mediation meeting the terms of the Rule, with a mediation scheduled for three hours duration.

If not resolved in that time, AusTex Mediation will continue to work with you to resolve the matter before the added expense of trial.

AusTex Mediation can provide mediation in a family law matter either before the legal case is filed, or after. With mediation, there is a greater likelihood in an amicable resolution to the marriage, so that the parties can move forward with less ill will. We are able to provide mediation with Scott Howard and Gloria Howard as co-mediators at the same cost as one mediator. Mediation with a male and female, an attorney and non-attorney, and with diverse life experience to assist in resolving the varied issues in divorce and family law matters.

A new alternative dispute resolution (ADR) process, which has a procedural format similar to mediation and other voluntary ADR procedures, has been developed by Senior Judge Frank G. Evans (Ret.). The unique structure of this ADR process gives lawyers and their clients greater input into the conduct of the proceedings and more control over the amount of time and cost they are willing to expend in completing discovery and other pre-trial activities. Thus, the Evans process holds promise for being more user-friendly and affordable for everyone, particularly those of moderate or limited financial resources who may be involved in disputes that are subject to the Expedited Civil Actions Rule.

The procedural format of the Managed Dispute Resolution process is governed by the terms of a Cooperative ADR Agreement, which is developed by mutual agreement of the parties and their counsel after meeting separately with AusTex Mediation to determine whether the process is “right” for the particular dispute. If the parties and  their counsel mutually agree upon the terms of the Cooperative ADR Agreement, AusTex Mediation will help them (a) identify the principal issues in dispute; (b) create a realistic timetable for the completion of any needed discovery; (c) develop private and confidential neutral case evaluations for each party regarding the probable outcome of the issues in dispute, and (d) make informal estimates regarding the time and cost required to complete their pre-trial activities. With this information in hand AusTex Mediation will help the parties complete their settlement negotiations in accordance with the terms of their Cooperative ADR Agreement.

The principal benefits of the Managed Dispute Resolution process are that it (a) tends to assure that all parties have an intelligent understanding of the risks and obligations assumed by them, respectively, under the terms of the Cooperative ADR Agreement; and (b) that with such understanding they have voluntarily committed to engage in good faith settlement negotiations in a cooperative effort to resolve the dispute. With the encouragement and guidance of AusTex Mediation, the parties likely will have a strong incentive to fulfill these commitments. The ultimate benefit to the parties and their counsel is that they will be able to control the amount of time and cost invested in the process and the clients will have greater satisfaction with the results achieved.

AusTex Mediation can provide a party to a suit, or all parties to a suit, an opportunity for presentation of the matter for neutral evaluation from a retired judge with 18 years’ experience on a Texas Court of Appeals, and to a board certified personal injury attorney with over 70 trials throughout the State of Texas. Both have represented both sides of the docket and are familiar with the key issues to be decided at trial and can provide an impartial opinion concerning the outcome.

Fees

Full day: $1000.00 per party. A full day mediation consists of eight hours mediation, and the fee includes up to one and a half hours of pre-mediation review of  documents.

Additional time beyond eight hours is billed at $250.00 per hour, divided between the parties.

Half day: $500.00 per party. A half day mediation consists of four hours mediation, and the fee includes up to one and a half hours of pre-mediation review of documents.

Additional time at mediation beyond four hours is billed at $250.00 per hour, divided between the parties.

For both full and half day mediations, there may be up to another one and a half hours of follow up time to assist the parties following mediation to resolve remaining issues, at no additional cost. Additional time beyond this will be billed at $250.00 per hour, divided between the parties.

Mediation can be conducted at facilities provided by the parties or counsel, or a neutral site can be arranged, with the actual cost split between the parties.

With more than two parties to a mediation, the per party fee structure may be altered, depending on the circumstances.

Travel time and expense. If a mediation takes place more than 100 miles from Austin, the parties will pay for actual expenses incurred in travel, divided between the parties. Alternative arrangements may be made for other situations upon discussion.

Cancellation. If a mediation is cancelled within 14 days of the scheduled mediation, a cancellation fee of 50% of the scheduled mediation fee may be charged to each party. Rescheduling can be arranged, but please provide as much notice as possible. Cancellation or rescheduling more than 14 days before the scheduled mediation will not be charged.

Holding dates. We will hold a date for a mediation for you for 48 hours. After this time, the date will be open for other scheduling.

Expedited cases: Each party will be charged an equivalent of the filing fee for the case. Mediation will last three hours.  Mediation will take place at a location provided by the parties, or a neutral site can be provided, with the additional cost divided between the parties.

Additional time at mediation beyond four hours is billed at $250.00 per hour, divided by the parties.

Included in the cost would be an additional hour for review of pertinent documents in advance of the mediation. There may be up to another hour of follow up time to assist the parties following mediation to resolve remaining issues, at no additional cost. Additional time beyond this will be billed at $250.00 per hour, divided between the parties.

With more than two parties to a mediation, the per party fee structure may be altered, depending on the circumstances.

Travel time and expense. If a mediation takes place more than 100 miles from Austin, the parties will pay for expenses incurred in travel, divided between the parties.

Cancellation. If a mediation is cancelled within 14 days of the scheduled mediation, a cancellation fee of 50% of the scheduled mediation fee may be charged to each party. Rescheduling can be provided, but please provide as much advance notice as possible. Cancellation or rescheduling more than 14 days before the scheduled mediation will not be charged.

Holding dates. We will hold a date for a mediation for you for 48 hours. After this time, the date will be open for other scheduling.

Full day: $1000.00 per party. A full day mediation consists of eight hours mediation, and the fee includes up to one and a half hours of pre-mediation review of  documents. We can provide both Scott Howard and Gloria Howard as co-mediators at this cost. Most family matters should be scheduled for a full day. Lunch will be provided for a full day mediation.

Additional time beyond eight hours is billed at $250.00 per hour, divided between the parties.

Half day: $500.00 per party. A half day mediation consists of four hours mediation, and the fee includes up to one and a half hours of pre-mediation review of documents. We can provide both Scott Howard and Gloria Howard as co-mediators at this cost.

Additional time at mediation beyond four hours is billed at $250.00 per hour, divided between the parties.

For both full and half day mediations, there may be up to another one and a half hours of follow up time to assist the parties following mediation to resolve remaining issues, at no additional cost. Additional time beyond this will be billed at $250.00 per hour, divided between the parties.

Mediation can be conducted at facilities provided by the parties or counsel, or a neutral site can be arranged, with the actual cost split between the parties.

Travel time and expense. If a mediation takes place more than 100 miles from Austin, the parties will pay for expenses incurred in travel, divided between the parties.

Cancellation. If a mediation is cancelled within 14 days of the scheduled mediation, a cancellation fee of 50% of the scheduled mediation fee may be charged to each party. Rescheduling can normally be accomodated, but please provide as much notice as possible. Cancellation or rescheduling more than 14 days before the scheduled mediation will not be charged.

Holding dates. We will hold a date for a mediation for you for 48 hours. After this time, the date will be open for other scheduling.

An initial discussion with counsel to examine the procedure will include the cost and the process. The goal of Managed Dispute Resolution is to be efficient and cost effective.
An initial discussion with counsel to examine the scope of the review and the procedure will include a discussion of the cost, with the intention of providing a useful and cost-effective process.