Should My Mediator Be A Lawyer?

The public’s perspective of lawyers seems to have been formed by TV and movie script writers. In their scripts the lawyer is usually a take-no-prisoners warrior.

Despite this perspective of lawyers, there is another class of lawyers – the “irenic” (see * below) lawyers. These lawyers promote peace or reconciliation; they are peaceable. Rarely seen by the public on TV or in the movies, we are out here and there are many of us across the country. Some of us practice law, some practice law but not in court, some are skilled negotiators, some are mediators, some do a number, or all, of these.

Lawyers who are trained and experienced mediators bring to the mediation knowledge of the law and the know-how to help parties address their legal issues as well as to help them resolve their other issues in a manner that serves their interests (and in family mediation, also the interests of their children).

Positive Solutions Group has a panel of lawyers and non-lawyer mediators. PSG mediators are both skilled and experienced. They are certified by the Supreme Court of Virginia to mediate court-referred cases.

Our lawyer-mediators have the advantage of being able to shed light on the legal ramifications of options being considered by the parties and of being able to draft legal documents memorializing your agreements.

Our non-lawyer mediators have experience and specialization in various fields including as business and family conflicts. And they have their lawyer-mediator colleagues to turn to for legal issues.

While a lawyer-mediator may not be needed for every mediation, it is safe to say he or she will have much to offer in any mediation.

*If you have a question about the origin of the word “irenic”, here is an answer from the Merriam Webster Dictionary:

Eirene was the Greek goddess of peace. Her name is also the Greek word for “peace,” and it gave rise to irenic and other peaceable terms including irenics (a theological term for advocacy of Christian unity), Irena (the genus name of two species of birds found in southern Asia and the Philippines), and the name Irene.