What is the difference between hiring a mediator and a lawyer?

A mediator is a neutral party who can provide legal information but does not give legal advice and does not “represent” any party. A mediator will not go to court and argue for or against any party.

A lawyer is duty bound to represent only one party, and cannot represent two parties. Lawyers who represent one party can take a “mediative” or cooperative negotiating approach to working with the “opposing” party.

Angeles Mediation and the law office of Mark Baumann offers both solutions. We can be “your lawyer” and represent you in court, or we can mediate for both parties. It is important to understand the difference because we cannot change our status. So for example, if you hire us to mediate your case but you change your mind and choose to go to court, we cannot be your attorney, nor the attorney for the other party. Likewise, once we are committed to representing you as your attorney, we cannot change to being a mediator for both parties.