Are mediators attorneys?

A few mediators are also attorneys and some attorneys are also mediators.  Currently about 10-15% of mediators that are members of the Montana Mediation Association are also attorneys.  

Are there different types of mediation?

Yes, there are three mediation styles.

1. Evaluative/Settlement conference

2. Facilitative

3. Transformative

Every form of mediation is completely confidential.  A facilitative and transformative style mediation is highly recommended for relationships that are long-lasting such as neighbors, work-related, and family.  These two types of mediation styles help relationships improve and empower the participants to continue to have positive interactions long into the future. Participants most commonly experience win-win outcomes. Settlement conference type mediations can have win/lose, lose/lose, or win/win results. Settlement conference type mediations are more expensive and take longer because parties are in separate rooms.

Read more here about mediation styles to decide which is best for you and your situation

When is a good time to set up mediation or get conflict coaching?

As early in the dispute as possible!  Once a party has filed with the court often times the dispute has escalated and is more difficult to resolve without professional help.  A mediator brought in early can help keep communication open and guide the parties to craft a resolution they both can live with.

If you feel you can handle the conflict on your own without a third party but need some help as to how to approach the issue, then conflict coaching is a good choice for your situation.