Definition of Mediation
Mediation is defined as being a negotiation that is conducted by an impartial, neutral, third party for the purpose of bringing about a compromise or a peaceful settlement between parties that are involved in a dispute of some kind. In relation to workers' compensation, mediation is when an impartial third party is called in to try and settle a dispute between an injured worker and that worker's employer and/or employer's workers' compensation insurance company in regard to a workers' compensation claim.
Mediation is usually something that is voluntary, although in some states it can be mandatory. An injured worker is usually represented by an attorney at the session, but it is possible for an injured worker to not be represented by an attorney at mediation. Although, in most instances, when there is a dispute that requires mediation, it is wise to have a workers' compensation attorney standing with you. Negotiations at mediation are confidential. Mediation allows an opportunity for for an injured worker and the insurance company to participate in how the claim will be resolved. Whereas, litigation puts the decision making process into the hands of someone else.