Mediator Approaches in Dealing with High Conflict of Parties in Mediation.

Mediator Approaches in Dealing with High Conflict of Parties in Mediation.

Presenter: Kevin Fitzsimmons

The purpose of the workshop is to discuss methods of dealing with high-conflict personalities and extremely hostile disputes.  While such cases may appear as irreconcilable, the presentation shall outline unusual, unique approaches for the mediator to engage the parties to move forward in a positive direction and avoid stalemate.  The workshop is intended to benefit both experienced mediation practitioners as well as those who are newer to the field.

The presentation will look in particular at different situations and personalities that may lend to high-conflict disputes.  The types of cases where high-conflict most commonly can be seen include the areas of family law, business disputes (especially within small companies & partnerships), construction law, workplace disputes and community clashes.

The workshop relates to the Conference theme, as it focuses on the basic mission for mediators to broadly facilitate dispute resolution, but discusses approaches for the particularly difficult, less common cases traditionally viewed as poor mediation prospects.

The format of the presentation shall be alternating lecture with attendant questions & answers.  No limit to number of participants.

A presentation outline shall be provided as a take-away, together with materials addressing approaches to handling high-conflict mediation proceedings.


Kevin Fitzsimmons is a partner in the Tampa & Orlando Florida law firm of Mandelbaum, Fitzsimmons, Hewitt & Cain, P.A.  He’s a registered lawyer in the State of Florida, and Board-Certified by the Florida Bar in the field of Civil Trial Practice.  Kevin is a graduate of the University of Florida College of Law (J.D. with Honors) and the Florida State University (B.A. English).  In law school he was an Editor of the University of Florida Journal of Law & Public Policy, and a Research Assistant to UF Law Professor Julian Juergensmeyer in growth management planning law.  He’s handled numerous civil court trials and hundreds of mediation proceedings.  Kevin’s peer listings include Florida SuperLawyers and the Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers. He speaks frequently at a variety of legal and professional conferences. 

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