Mediation

After the parties finish discovery, the information exchange is complete, and the Maryland medical malpractice case enters the litigation process’s resolution phase and goes to mediation.

Mediation Rules

Under Rule 17-203, the circuit court orders the parties “to engage in ADR at the earliest practicable date, unless all parties file with the court an agreement not to engage in ADR and the court finds that ADR would not be productive.” The court issues this order as part of the scheduling order at the beginning of the case.

ADR is alternative dispute resolution and includes different processes, including mediation. Rule 17-102(d).

Under subsection (c)(1), the parties can agree on the mediator and notify the court. Otherwise, the court appoints a mediator. Rule 17-203(c)(2).

Meditation is a voluntary process of appearing before a neutral person who facilitates a process between the parties to explore a resolution of the case by agreement without the need for a trial.

Mediation paper for Maryland medical malpractice case.
Mediation of Maryland Medical Malpractice Case

As a practical matter, all of our cases go to mediation. We have been pursuing cases throughout Maryland and DC for decades. We have repeatedly brought cases against the major hospitals and doctors groups during this time. As part of this process over the many years, we regularly go against the law firms that defend medical providers. As a result, they know us and know that when we bring a case, it has merit.

We resolve the great majority of our cases by getting excellent results in mediation. Although some cases don’t settle in mediation, just about every case goes to mediation.

Selection of the Mediator

We almost always agree with the defense on selecting a mediator instead of allowing the circuit court to assign one. We would instead choose someone we have worked with before.

Generally, the mediator will be a retired judge or lawyer who regularly mediates Maryland medical malpractice cases. The lawyers are usually retired from handling medical malpractice cases, representing plaintiffs or defendants.

The parties will usually schedule the mediation after they complete discovery for a date before the pretrial conference with the court. The location is typically the office of the plaintiff or defense lawyer.

We will meet with you before the mediation to prepare you and tell you everything you need to know. We will discuss potential settlement ranges and your net results. Of course, we will be at the mediation with you the entire time.

At the Mediation

At the mediation, we start by meeting in a conference room together. The mediator and defense lawyer will be there. If the defendant is a hospital, a representative from the hospital will be present. If the defendant is a doctor, a representative from the doctor’s insurance company will be present. The doctor may also be present.

After an initial conference, the parties will go into separate rooms with their lawyers, and the mediator will go between the rooms. The plaintiff will make a demand to settle the case, which is a dollar figure the mediator will take to the defense. The defense will then make a counteroffer. These initial figures are usually far from what the other side would accept to settle the case.

The mediator then moves back and forth between the rooms as long as the parties change their offers to move closer to one another. This continues until the parties reach a settlement amount or decide that they are unwilling to go beyond their last offer.

If the parties reach a settlement amount, the lawyers will prepare a settlement agreement and release and a document dismissing the court case with prejudice. It will take 1-2 months to finalize those documents and receive the defendant’s check.

Settlement for Minors

Rule 2-202(c) governs the settlement of a case on behalf of a minor. A settlement is not valid unless each living parent of the minor approves it. An exception allows the court to approve the settlement after notice is given to a living parent and an opportunity for a hearing. If there are no living parents of the minor, the settlement is not valid unless the court approves it.

If the parties cannot agree on a settlement at mediation, sometimes the mediator will check with them after the mediation to see if they would like to consider making another offer. If not, the case continues to the pretrial stage.

When you are ready for your free consultation directly with Attorney Mark Kopec, contact him at 800-604-0704.

What Our Clients Say About Us

At the Kopec Law Firm, we are grateful that satisfied clients express their appreciation!

Mark is a knowledgeable and empathetic lawyer who speaks directly and concisely to evaluate your problem. He doesn't use attorney jargon that confuses people, rather he talks clearly. Although he couldn't help me with my situation, the consultation I had was productive because he answered my questions and gave me some clarity.

Shahnaz in Ellicott City

Dear Mark, I just wanted to express my gratitude for your dedication to my case. As you know, it has been a long and upsetting process for me, which would have been a great deal longer had it not been for the hours you put in helping me with this emotional roller coaster. Thank you again.

Shannon T. in Anne Arundel County

Dear Mark, thank you so much for your help and kindness. You provided the guidance and assistance we needed to obtain some understanding in loss of our child. We will never forget the professional and personal service provided. If anyone is in need of legal representation, I will certainly send them your way. God bless.

Kim C. in Cecil County

I wanted to say thank you for spending time with me regarding my questions about legal issues. Mere words cannot really express my gratitude. You seem to truly care about people.

Client in Baltimore City

Dear Mr. Mark, I’m truly grateful to have had you work on my son’s case. You were up front at all times and were on key every step of the way. I will always recommend your firm. Thank you so much for helping my son. P.S. Every time my son sees you on TV, he says “Mom, that’s my lawyer, Mr. Mark.” 🙂 Thank you again. You did an excellent job on the...

K.N. in Baltimore City

Dear Mark, we want to thank you for all the hard work and time your firm put in our case. You took the time to listen to us and research our case. You were honest and up front regarding the case. You responded to questions and concerns quickly. We would highly recommend your firm and services to anyone who is in need of legal representation. We...

Rebecca T. in Prince George’s County

Super Awesome team and staff! Worked with them for a case they handled for my grandchild about 10yrs ago! Would definitely use them again! I recommend them to everyone I know. Could never thank them enough! Very thorough and knowledgeable! Always kept us in the loop throughout the entire process!!!!

Letha C. in Prince George’s County

Mark explained everything in detail and brought clarity to all of my concerns.

Doris in Edgwater

I am very happy and thankful for your help. You responded very quickly. I am very happy to recommend you.

Linda in Chevy Chase
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