I am commemorating one-year of an entirely virtual mediation practice. In March 2018, when I launched Petlak Mediation, I could not have foreseen a worldwide pandemic which would prevent me from conducting in-person mediations for an entire year.
The surprise of the pandemic came with the requirement of transitioning my entire practice to on-line mediation. I quickly became a Zoom-certified mediator providing secure, video mediations on-line. The cases that I had scheduled in March of 2020 in-person were continued and rescheduled to be conducted via Zoom. To my amazement, those cases all settled in the new on-line mediation format without missing a beat. I was able to build connections with the attorneys and clients as I had during in-person mediations. An added bonus was that I was able to resolve several disputes between parties located in different states and countries without inconvenient and costly travel.
My practice continues to grow in the on-line format, and I have just completed my 150th on-line mediation this year. Now that we see the light at the end of the pandemic tunnel, I look forward to providing in-person mediations again. One day soon parties will be able to select between on-line and in-person mediation formats. No matter the format selected, I look forward to continuing to pursue my passion of working with parties and counsel to resolve disputes.