"the act of a third person who interferes between two contending parties with a view to reconcile them or persuade them to adjust or settle their dispute" -- Black Law Dictionary
That is a very sterile definition of the mediation process. A mediation leaves the parties in charge of their own fate. The mediator will not issue a decision in the case and will not make a judgment as to who is right or wrong. Instead, a skillful mediator tries to guide the parties to find a middle ground they can agree on.
In addition to leaving the parties in control of their fate, mediation is often a fraction of the cost of litigating a case. Plus, the parties can control the cost of the mediation by deciding how much of the mediator's time they want to use.
Attorney Allen has been mediating cases for over 16 years as both counsel representing a party to the mediation and as a mediator. He is a listed mediator with Mediation.com. He has extensive mediation experience in both family and personal injury cases and is a big proponent of helping parties utilize mediation to keep them in control of the outcome in their case.