The Anti-Antagonist: Advocacy in Mediation

Pittsburgh Post Gazette: Community Voices
October 19, 2011

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania mediator/lawyer, Ann Begler, discusses the transition towards mediation away from litigation over the past years in the region. During the late 1980’s and the early 90’s, she notes that “while mediation practices were increasing in many parts of the country, lawyers in Pennsylvania, including the Pittsburgh region, rarely served as a client’s counsel during a mediation process. Today, however, that’s not the case.”

Mediation started with the USPS and the EEOC and expanded to family law proceedings and workers compensation cases. Now, it is increasingly used in civil courts with established mediation programs in the Commonwealth Courts and the Superior Courts. Given the increase in mediation, it is imperative that lawyers develop competency to represent their client as mediation counsel based on Rule 1.1 of the Rules of Professional Conduct. As lawyers spend less time in the courtroom and more time at the mediation table, lawyers must adapt and learn a new skill set.

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