The judge will call your case
The judge will either suggest that you try mediation, or you may make the request yourself to participate in mediation.
If both parties are present, have an appropriate case, and agree to participate in mediation, you will go with the mediator and the other party to a private conference room to talk about your case.
The mediator will help you and the other party see if you can reach a mutually agreed upon resolution.
If you wish, the mediator will help you write up the agreement.
The parties then go back in front of the judge where the judge will review the agreement and make it an order of the court.
Because we receive a grant from the Rhode Island State Supreme Court this service is offered to you free of charge.
Participating in mediation is voluntary. You can begin the mediation process, but decide that you would rather go in front of the judge at any point during the mediation process.
If you reach an agreement that the court signs, you end up with an enforceable order of the court, just as if you had a trial in front of the judge.
Lawyers are welcome in mediation in small claims court, but they are not necessary.
If your case has not yet been filed in small claims court, mediation may be an option for you to resolve your dispute, rather than filing in court
CMCRI regularly handles small claims court cases where the parties would like to try to resolve their disputes through mediation rather than filing in small claims court.
As with mediations in the court, there is no charge for small claims court mediation cases where the parties are using mediation as an alternative to the court process.