Settle your case without an attorney?  That is your absolute right to do, but the one thing you will be at a disadvantage in is experience. The insurance company deals with mediations regularly and they know which buttons to push. They know when to make their final offer. They know when they are going to walk away to see if you are willing to resolve it that day or not.  When you have Pittsburgh wrongful death and auto accident attorney Bernie Tully with you at mediation, you will get his caring and experience working for you. I must say I have had all the tricks of mediation either pulled on me or attempted to be pulled on me over the years.  So I can see when they are coming and properly advise you.

It has been my experience that the best time to attempt to settle your wrongful death, slip and fall or auto accident case is at mediation. Why?  Because that is when all the parties are together in one room, face to face. That is a lot different than if we are just negotiating over the phone with some insurance company in DesMoines, Iowa, for example. I do not have absolute statistics on it, but my belief is that about 98% of the cases we mediate with insurance companies ultimately result in a settlement.

Sometimes we advise injured victims not to take the top offer at the mediation. Why?  Because it is very possible that the insurance company is just seeing if you will take their bluff by walking out at the mediation.  That sometimes happens.  But when I am mediating a case on behalf of an injured victim the negotiations continue even after the unsuccessful mediation.  Ultimately, even those cases get resolved  because of the foundation that was laid at the mediation.

Well, that is it about mediation.  I guess the most important point to take from this mediation blog is that it is an art and not a science.  That is why, at least in my opinion, you are very well served with having an experienced attorney with you at the mediation.  The last analogy I will give you is this.  I really don’t know a thing about cars or their value.  If I went into an auto dealership, attempting to buy a new car alone, I would get my clock cleaned.  Car salesmen know every trick in the book to get you to buy a new car for a lot more than it is worth.  I almost always take someone   with me when I am buying a car who can help me see when the car salesman is just trying to get me to sign on the dotted line.   It helps to have someone who has experience with cars in your corner when you are in that car dealership.  I think you get the point about injury cases and mediation.  It really is the same thing.

Thanks for reading.  Well, this week’s game against the Cleveland Browns is a big one for the Steelers to keep in playoff contention.  Without Big Ben behind the center it is going to be difficult.  Do you think that the Steelers will win against the Browns?  If so, what do you think the score will be.  I want to hear from you.

Bernie the attorney