In Missouri Workers Compensation cases, settlements or “stipulations” as they are known, are often accomplished through a process known as mediation.
Parties often voluntarily agree to engage in mediation. I have found that mediation is a highly effective tool to assist the parties to resolve the case, and in most cases, it is probably your best chance to obtain a settlement in your case.
What Is Involved With A Missouri Work Comp Mediation?
Mediation is simply a process whereby you and your attorney, and the opposing attorney, and sometimes a representative from your employer and/or a representative from the workers compensation carrier, get together in a conference room, along with a Missouri Worker Compensation judge who acts as mediator. This usually takes place at the local Division of Workers Compensation where your case is being handled.
For instance Springfield Missouri Workers Compensation mediations are held at the Division of Workers’ Compensation offices in the Plaza Towers.
Lebanon Missouri Work Comp mediations are generally held at the Lebanon Public Library.
Branson Missouri Workers Compensation mediations are held at the Branson West City Hall.
The judge/mediator does not have the power to make any decisions with respect to your case and will not be the judge who would hear your case at a final hearing if it made it that far. Their job is merely to facilitate the two sides getting together to try to resolve your claim.
It is my job to familiarize you with the process and present your claim in the best light possible. We do a short presentation to the mediator of the facts relating to your case, and then the other side has their turn. The judge/mediator then gives his or her opinion of the value of your claim and begin the negotiation process.
I have found this process to be especially effective in resolving cases. Often it is helpful for the injured worker to hear from a judge what value they can expect from their claim.