Every so often, an attorney has a client who simply refuses to even consider settling a case. Perhaps the client is concerned that he will be perceived as weak to the other party. Or, perhaps the client has been fighting for so long that there is no way he will change his mind. For a variety of reasons, it seems like these clients will never agree to a settlement.
If you know that enlisting the services of a Florida disputes mediator is the best solution for a case, it may be difficult to convince your client that mediation should be attempted. However, by taking the time to explain the harsh realities of the courtroom to your client, your client may come around to the idea. The sooner you have this discussion with your client, the better, as once a case has progressed significantly, the parties are less likely to compromise on certain issues.
Stubborn clients know what they want out of the case. Begin by explaining to them that the only way to truly remain in control of the case is to take an active role in negotiating a settlement. Although the client may not “win” on every single point in the case during mediation, the client will likely see at least a few issues resolved in the way that he wants. Explain that a trial before a judge or a jury may produce the opposite result from what the client wants. The client is free to reject settlement proposals in mediation, but it is much more difficult to appeal a court or jury verdict.
Explaining the trial process may also help your client see the benefits of mediation. Most clients are not keen on taking the witness stand, offering testimony, and being cross-examined by opposing counsel.