1205 Three Mile Bridge Rd
Middlebury, VT 05753
MarksPowers Online Mediation Agreement
- Secure Internet Connection. You and your client need private, secure and strong internet connections. Weak internet will lead to screen freeze. No public Wi-Fi can be used by anyone.
- Zoom App. Download the Zoom Client for Meetings at https://zoom.us/download. Test your camera, microphone, and secure internet connection before the pre-mediation videoconference. Zoom has tutorials at https://support.zoom.us/
- Pre-Mediation Videoconference by Zoom. The mediator will send you a link for a pre-mediation videoconference by Zoom to test the system and do our normal preparation for mediation. In the pre-mediation videoconference, make sure you have the email addresses and cell phone numbers for everyone on your team who will participate in the mediation. Immediately following the pre-mediation videoconference, please email your list of participant names, email addresses and cell phone numbers to your mediator and to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- MANDATORY ZOOM CALL WITH CLIENT. Clients also must have Zoom, camera, microphone and a secure, private internet connection for the mediation. Lawyers must test them in a Zoom videoconference with their clients before mediation.
- Mediation Statements and Documents. Email your mediation statements to the mediator and to Kristin. If there are documents you want to share during the mediation, designate and share them with your mediator in advance if possible. We can share and edit documents within Zoom during mediations. Your mediator is using email and Dropbox to share documents. You can get a free, basic account at https://www.dropbox.com/basic
- Mediation Invitation. Your mediator will email to everyone who participates (client, lawyer and support persons) a link for joining the mediation. Unless you are on the mediator’s list, you won’t be invited and cannot participate.
- Start of Mediation. When you and your client click the "Join Zoom Meeting" link in your invitation, you will each see a waiting room screen. The mediator will admit you to the mediation joint session as soon as possible, and if needed you and your client can be moved to a separate breakout room prior to the joint session where you can converse privately or with the mediator.
- NO RECORDING. To preserve privacy and confidentiality, all participants agree that they will not record any portion of the mediation.
- PRIVACY. All participants must work from a fully private location. Only the lawyers, parties and support persons invited by the mediator may participate. If anyone else wants to participate, their participation must be agreed to by other parties and the mediator.
- FULL PARTICIPATION. To replicate the commitment of an in-person mediation, everyone commits to be available at all times, participate fully when requested by the mediator, not schedule any other work during the mediation, and not leave the mediation unilaterally without discussion with the mediator.
- Breakout Rooms. After the joint session, the mediator will assign Parties to private breakout rooms. Lawyers and clients can be in remote locations, and still be in the same breakout room and communicate with each other. The mediator can shuttle between breakout rooms. The mediator can also broadcast written updates on timing to all Parties, and parties can send requests for help to the mediator if needed. The mediator can bring any combination of attorneys or parties together if needed during the mediation.
- Signed settlement agreement. The mediator uses DocuSign so that the Parties can sign a settlement agreement. Once the Parties have reached an agreement, the mediator will distribute a settlement agreement via DocuSign for signature.
- Technology Failures. It happens, but it is almost always preventable and solvable. As for prevention, all participants must test their systems in advance. In the event of a technical glitch, we can reconnect by text, email or cellphone to solve the problem or provide an alternate path for communication. We will share the contact information in the opening session.
- This Online Mediation Agreement is incorporated by reference and is a part of the Agreement to Mediate signed by all parties and attorneys.