After Mediation

Consent Orders

If you reach a settlement on some or all issues in dispute, you will formalize it with an agreement signed by all parties.

Where a court action has begun, the parties may ask the court for a consent order. A consent order sets out the terms of the settlement agreement and is signed by a judge and all the parties. Once you have a consent order, your agreement is enforceable by the court. Having the order gives you more options for enforcement if one party fails to live up to the settlement agreement.

Consent orders are most common when lawyers are involved in mediation. For more information about consent orders, ask your lawyer.

Issues you have not been able to settle through mediation can still go through the court process. The time you spent in mediation may have made the court process shorter and easier.

If your dispute goes to court, the parties or lawyers for the parties may tell the judge about agreements made in mediation. They will not, however, tell the judge anything said during mediation.

Going to Court

To give mediation a chance of success, you may wish to continue with it as long as the mediator thinks it is working.

Nonetheless, you are not required to agree to anything in mediation. If you are not satisfied with the process or if you are unable to reach agreement, you can end mediation and take your dispute to court.

Breaking an Agreement or Consent Order

You should get legal advice if a party to a settlement agreement or a consent order breaks it.

Your lawyer will likely tell you a settlement agreement that is correctly drafted is legally binding contract. If any party to it fails to live up to its terms, it is possible to go to court for an order to enforce it.

If you have a consent order setting out the terms of the agreement and a party does not obey the