Bill Ratliff

Bill Ratliff
A senior partner of the law firm of Wallace, Jordan, Ratliff & Brandt, Bill Ratliff has been an adjunct professor of Mediation at the University of Alabama since 2009. He is also an avid blogger at Mediation Insights: www.mediationinsights.com

Pre-Mediation Conferences

Pre-Mediation ConferencesAre you effectively utilizing them as a part of the mediation process?I’ve handled any number of mediations where the parties and counsel view prospects for settlement with optimism. In other cases — typically where the facts or the law are...

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Don’t Take Special for Granted

Don’t Take “Special” for GrantedMy posts typically deal with insights I’ve gained in my career as a mediator. That said, mediation is what I do. It’s not who I am. I’m a son, a husband, a father, a grandfather, a friend, a lawyer, a partner, a Christian — and so many...

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Creative Uses Of Mediation

One of the things I enjoy most about my job as a mediator is the flexibility inherent in the mediation process I utilize.Most of my readers are lawyers. Many of you are litigators — for whom mediation has become a preferred tool for resolving most of your cases....

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When Is A Case Ripe For Mediation?

When is a case ripe for mediation?I’ve successfully mediated cases before suit was filed; after suit was filed, but before any discovery was conducted; after discovery was completed; while a jury was deciding a case; and while a case was on appeal.It’s not just about...

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The Need To Be Right

Regardless of the hat I’m wearing at the time — mediator, litigator, friend, brother, husband, father, and now grandfather — I struggle with the desire to be right. Always right.I recently read a post on the Mediate.com blog by Loraine Segal entitled The...

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Decision Tree Analysis

Decision tree analysis is a valuable tool for evaluating settlement options in mediation. It’s a tactic we employ with even the most mundane decisions. For instance, as we consider crossing a busy street, we’re unconsciously weighing the “reward” of being across the...

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Persistence Wins In Mediation

As I mentioned in another post, I recently served on a panel of mediators — with Phil Adams, Randy James and Harold Stephens — at the Alabama State Bar’s annual meeting.Harold likened mediation to an “American Ninja Warriors” competition (referring to the popular NBC...

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Attitude Matters

Those of you who hunt have surely seen the logo for the gear with a large antler rack and the words Size Matters. I recently heard an E.D. advertisement claiming, as part of their product pitch, that Sex Matters. My variation on these themes, in mediation and...

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How Do You Get The Mediator On Your Side?

You thought mediators were neutral? Well, they are. Or should be. I’m talking about how you can get a mediator to work for you, and help you accomplish your goals. (NOTE: For the sake of readability, I’m going to assume the mediator, like me, is male).The answer to...

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Forces That Negatively Affect Negotiations

In another post, I discussed forces that impact our judgment in valuing cases.Today I want to discuss forces that negatively affect our ability to negotiate cases; forces which, It’s important to note, generally influence us subconsciously. Parties aren’t even aware...

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