Standing Up For You

Is it possible to mediate a mass tort case?

If you have suffered injuries because you used a defective medical product, you may become part of a mass tort lawsuit. This allows you to pool your claim with others who have experienced similar injuries because of the same product or source. However, it is possible your mass tort case might not reach its settlement in court, but will instead go to mediation.

Mediation is an alternative method to resolving a legal dispute in court. A mediator facilitates discussions between the parties so they can arrive at a solution, though a court must still approve it. This method allows all parties involved to exert greater control over the settlement instead of letting a court decide it.

The possibility of mediation

FindLaw describes some reasons why plaintiffs and defendants may consider mediation. Plaintiffs might want to expedite a solution and ensure that the settlement fairly compensates them for their damages or injuries. As for the defendants, they likely want to resolve the case as quickly as possible to limit damage to their reputation and prevent future liability.

The challenges of mediation

Mediating a mass tort may not be an easy task. Even if the parties responsible for your injuries are willing to settle, they may come up with a different amount for compensation than you and your fellow plaintiffs want. This may result in multiple mediation sessions to iron out a final number. This could be a problem if you need compensation for your medical bills in a timely manner.

A mediated settlement also has to consider the interests of all the plaintiffs. You want to get the same kind of compensation that anyone suffering your type of injury should receive. Concerned plaintiffs may slow down the process until they are sure the settlement will not shortchange them. If mediation is looking like a possibility in your case, addressing your concerns with a legal professional may be of benefit.