Mediation – An Overview
WHAT IS MEDIATION?
Mediation is a non-binding process in which a neutral third party helps a homeowner and the Association attempt to reach a mutual agreement. Mediation is required by OakLeaf East POA’s governing documents prior to any request for relief by the court. Mediation is subsequent to an unresolved demand by the Association and is prior to the Association filing a lawsuit, in an effort to achieve compliance with the governing documents. Neither the homeowner nor the Association is legally obligated to accept the terms of the mediation. In order to help everyone, express their point of view, the mediator will privately meet with the homeowner and Association. One thing to remember about participating in mediation is that a homeowner will have a chance to explain their position in the ongoing dispute.
WHO ARE THE MEDIATORS?
Mediators are persons approved by The State of Florida including those that are court· appointed. A mediator must possess an active certification as a Florida Supreme Court certified circuit court mediator, or the mediator must have been an approved mediator as of July 1, 2014, and have conducted at least one mediation on behalf of the department within four years immediately preceding that date. A Florida Supreme Court certified circuit court mediator in a lapsed, suspended, sanctioned, or decertified status is not eligible to participate in the mediation program.
WHAT ARE THE LIMITS OF MEDIATION?
The mediator helps the parties focus on the issues and understand each other’s point of view but does not dictate the outcome of the discussion. Choosing mediation does not prevent the homeowner or the Association from participating in other dispute resolution procedures, or even going to court later to request an injunction requiring compliance. Nothing you say in a mediation conference can be used against you in any later court proceedings.