REAL ESTATE MEDIATIONS AND DISPUTE RESOLUTION SERVICES

ALL MEDIATIONS ARE CURRENTLY “VIRTUAL”, FACILITATED VIA VIDEO CONFERENCE AND/OR TELECONFERENCE. SECURE VIDEO CONNECTIONS ARE ESTABLISHED, ONE FOR EACH PARTY, TO ENSURE PRIVATE DISCUSSIONS.  SEE BELOW OR CONTACT OUR OFFICE FOR MORE DETAILS. 

Mr. Lucas is a Mediator for voluntary dispute resolution (“mediation”) – often required pursuant to purchase and lease agreements prior to filing a lawsuit or arbitration claim, such as the mediation requirement found in the California Association of REALTORS® Residential Purchase Agreement.  Mr. Lucas’ extensive legal background, including trial and appellate experience, and active work as a real estate broker, provides mediation parties with distinctive insight and a unique ability to work with parties in all forms of discord.  Read Mr. Lucas full bio here.

To schedule a mediation, fill out our on-line intake form, or call or email our office, info@lucas-real-estate.com. Once we obtain all parties’ names and contact information, we will swiftly perform a conflict check and schedule your mediation.

View Mediation Availability Calendar Here

 

Mr. Lucas is also on the panel of mediators via the California Association of REALTORS® Real Estate Mediation Center for Consumers.  To learn more or to schedule a mediation directly through that organization, click here (note – pricing is slightly different via the Center, contact the Center directly for current information.)   

 

Two party mediations are now only $898 total (generally split 50/50) – see full pricing information below 

 

(Watch our brief video detailing the virtual mediation process)

 

WHAT IS MEDIATION / HOW DOES IT WORK

“Mediation” is a process in which a neutral third-party, i.e. Mr. Lucas, facilitates communication between the disputants to assist them in reaching a mutually acceptable agreement.  Mediation is confidential, voluntary and non-binding – informal compared to court proceedings.  If no mutually agreeable resolution is achieved at mediation, the parties are free to pursue their otherwise available remedies, generally a lawsuit, arbitration or administrative action.  Any dispute can be mediated and resolutions are not always monetary.  Mediations are generally three hours; additional time and/or daily rates available.  See below for full pricing information. 

Review this article (link here), and/or watch the below video, for additional information on mediation and compliance with the The California Association Of Realtors® Residential Purchase Agreement (“RPA”) requirement for pre-litigation mediation.

(Watch our detailed video explaining the mediation process)

TYPES OF DISPUTES MEDIATED

Any dispute can benefit from mediation; Our office, Mr. Lucas, exclusively handles real estate mediations.  There is no limit to the type of dispute that can arise in real estate.  Some general categories of frequent disputes we mediate include: 

  • Non-disclosure and fraud contentions 
  • Deposits and cancelations, including initial earnest money deposit disputes / release of deposits / cancelations / liquidated damages clauses 
  • (New) Cancelation surrounding coronavirus (COVID-19)
  • Landlord-tenant disputes, security deposit disputes, mold and habitability claims
  • Boundary, fence and tree disputes 
  • Neighbor disputes 
  • Construction disputes 
  • Homeowners Association (HOA) matters 
  • Commission and fee disputes between parties and their REALTORS®
  • REALTOR® to REALTOR® (or brokerage to brokerage) disputes, including commissions, procuring cause and the like

THE PROCESS

Mr. Lucas typically places each party in their own private virtual conference room (using Google Meet, an easy yet professional video conferencing program), introduces himself and goes over basic preliminary information.  Mr. Lucas will do this for each party; thus the other party is ‘dark’ for some periods of time.  While Mr. Lucas is away, you can speak privately and securely with any other members of your “side” (perhaps attorney, etc.). Mr. Lucas will then come back in, just as if going between two physical conference rooms.

Mr. Lucas will discuss the details of the dispute with each party and eventually discuss solutions and resolution options, going back and forth as needed.  If a resolution is achieved, a pre-made template settlement agreement is provided, completed and signed online, using electronic signature program (and trusted industry leader) Docusign. 

Please review the article and/or video above for additional information on the process.

IN-PERSON AND VIRTUAL, VIDEO CONFERENCING AND TELECONFERENCING

In-person attendance was always preferential (see below regarding our exceptional bay-front facilities), but extenuating circumstances have altered in-person meetings for the foreseeable future.  While our office intends to remain open and available (and has ample facilities for frequent hand washing), new orders and various comfort levels likely indicate we will be online, virtual, over video conference for the foreseeable future.   

Each party will be provided their own secure video (and/or dial-in) conference with the mediator, one-on-one.  

We use Google Meet.  Google Meet is easy and works with any browser, no account or software required (optional mobile device apps to download).  You will be provided an email with a secure link to your conference.  Parties and their counsel can appear from the same, or multiple locations.  There is no limit on the number of locations and connections.  

COSTS / RATES / FEES 

There is no upfront fee and no deposit is required to schedule.  Full payment is due two weeks prior to the mediation (with some exceptions for rush scheduling, etc.).  

– Two Party Mediations are now only $898 total (generally split 50/50, though the parties and/or the contract will determine).  Mediations are three hours, plus Mr. Lucas will review any briefs or materials sent in advance.  

– Three or more parties requires a four hour mediation to allow sufficient time at $1,200 total.  

– Additional time (beyond the initial three or four hour allotment) is billed at $325 per hour in the same pro rata share as the initial fee, unless otherwise agreed by the parties.  

– Full day virtual mediations are available for $1,850 total fee (in person at $2,000, including lunch provided for all parties).

CANCELATION AND RESCHEDULING POLICY

Two (2) weeks, or more, prior to the meditation = no cancelation or rescheduling fee.  Between one (1) week and three (3) calendar days prior to the meditation = $100 cancelation or rescheduling fee.  Two (2) calendar days, or less, prior to the meditation = $300 cancelation or rescheduling fee. 

DO YOU NEED AN ATTORNEY FOR MEDIATION?

Maybe.  The complexity of your dispute and amount in controversy will govern this decision.  Legal advice (even if not formal representation) is always recommended prior to attending mediation and embarking on a legal dispute.  If you choose not to hire an attorney, Mr. Lucas excels at working with unrepresented parties towards resolution, taking the time to listen to their matter, explain the potential outcomes and allow the parties to reach their own determination as to the value of resolution vs. proceeding with litigation.  Many of the cases we resolve are with unrepresented parties.  If a resolution is achieved (represented or unrepresented), we have template settlement agreements available to use and can swiftly obtain electronic signatures to have a binding resolution at the conclusion of your mediation. 

LOCATION AND FACILITIES

(See above re virtual, video and teleconferencing options)  

Our spacious Newport Beach bay-view conference rooms are as relaxing as the process can be.  Separate spacious Newport Beach bay-view conference rooms are provided, one for each party, with complimentary coffee, water and Wi-Fi.  Daily parking rates do apply.

(click here for additional information on parking, including parking maps, directions and parking rates)

HOW TO START THE PROCESS

Mediation generally starts with one party sending a “demand for mediation”, which can be a letter simply outlining the parties involved, a brief nature of the dispute, the proposed Mediator(s) and a reasonable deadline to respond.  Then the parties agree on a Mediator, and the Mediator generally sets a schedule. 

Review this article (link here to review key article on mediation requirements) for additional information on mediation and compliance with the The California Association Of Realtors® Residential Purchase Agreement (“RPA”) requirement for pre-litigation mediation.

To schedule a mediation, fill out our on-line intake form, or call or email our office, info@lucas-real-estate.com. Once we obtain all parties’ names and contact information, we will swiftly perform a conflict check and thereafter send out formal notice with additional information, available dates, invoice and payment links.

View Mediation Availability Calendar Here

Our office can assist with this process and coordinate the mediation.

info@lucas-real-estate.com | 949.478.1623 office | 888.667.6038 fax