Learning From The Challenges Of 2020

January 7, 2021By Bill RatliffUncategorized

Why I’m optimistic. Particularly for the future of mediation. By any standard, 2020 was a challenging year. It’s a year nearly all of us are glad to see in the proverbial rear-view mirror. At the same time, it could be argued that there is a positive aspect to the legacy of 2020 — because, on … Read More

Conducting Mediations During The Pandemic

August 6, 2020By Bill RatliffUncategorized

A few months ago I wrote a post entitled Mediating Cases Under The New (Ab)Normal. When I wrote it, I really had no idea what the New Normal would be. I’m not sure that I do, even now. What I can say with confidence, several months later, is that mediation can be effective no matter … Read More

Mediating Cases Under The New (Ab)Normal

April 2, 2020By Bill RatliffUncategorized

Hello and sincere best wishes, from my home and family to yours. I doubt any of us could have imagined, even two months ago, that our lives could be so radically affected by something as common to our experience as a flu virus. We are told that its effects will be long lasting, and I … Read More

What To Do When You Find Yourself In A Hole

February 27, 2020By Bill RatliffUncategorized

For starters, consider mediation. I remember as a young litigator at Cabaniss Johnston, partner Bill Robinson introduced me to the First Rule of Holes — which is, “When you’re in a hole, quit digging.” He was teaching me that when you have a losing position or case, you shouldn’t make it worse by doubling down. … Read More

Getting Your Mediation Off The Ground

January 30, 2020By Bill RatliffUncategorized

Have you ever been involved in a mediation that ended before it started? I have. I don’t mean literally, but I do mean one that never gets past the first round of demand and offer. In one sense, conducting a mediation is like flying a plane: It’s not going anywhere if you can’t get it … Read More

Wise Mediators Know: To Err Is Human

December 5, 2019By Bill RatliffUncategorized

The title of this post, of course, is from the Alexander Pope quote, “To err is human. To forgive divine.” This post isn’t about forgiveness. However, lest we forget, we are all human! So what does that mean? For one, it means we aren’t machines programmed to automatically produce correct responses in all situations. We … Read More

Controlling Difficult Clients During Mediations

October 24, 2019By Bill RatliffUncategorized

IT’S NOT EASY. IN RARE INSTANCES, IT’S NOT EVEN POSSIBLE. I recently wrapped up a mediation in which we settled two Federal and two State Court cases as a part of the settlement. There were 15 attorneys involved, and it took us nearly five months to pull-together all of the moving parts. What took so … Read More