To attend a mediation on Zoom video-conferencing, you do not have to have a Zoom account.
A link to join the Zoom video-conference will be included in the confirmation E-mail you will receive from the mediator. To join a mediation session via Zoom video conference, you will be prompted to download the free Zoom software to your computer, laptop, iPad or tablet, or mobile phone. Zoom has a feature-rich, mobile app for both iOS and Android, allowing you to virtually connect from anywhere with a secure internet connection. Once the software is downloaded, take some time to get acquainted with Zoom if you've never used it before.
Start Zoom with a free subscription and record or video-conference with a co-workers, friend, and family member. Take the time to Zoom with a friend or family member, if you have never Zoomed before. Doing this will make you more relaxed on the day of the mediation session and it will help you work out any technical issues you may have as you're setting up.
I recommend that you download the Zoom software early. Get the 'technical-bugs' worked out before the mediation date and time. Here are a few things to consider:
Join the video-conference mediation via Zoom 5 or 10 minutes before the scheduled start time to work out any last minute video or sound 'technical bugs'.
Once a mediation has been scheduled, the participants will receive an E-mail confirming the date and time and with a link to join the Zoom video-conference.
Zoom Help Center
Joining a Meeting (start here)
Mediation is always confidential, mediating via video-conference is no exception to the rule of confidentiality in mediation. To ensure confidentiality when video-conference mediating, certain role based access controls and admin features are available to the mediator when using Zoom. Also, aside from having a unique login and password, Zoom also implements both Secure Socket Layer (SSL) encryption and AES 256-bits encryption.
Only the participants to the mediation via Zoom will each receive an E-mail with a link to join the video-conference mediation. Once the participants have joined the video-conference mediation, the mediator will close the 'mediation room' so no other uninvited person can accidentally join.
While in the 'mediation room' each participant will be able to view, hear, and speak with the mediator and all other participants. Only the mediator will have the technical capability to make adjustments to the 'mediation room' to maintain confidentiality in the 'mediation room', such as record or mute participants,
In a mediation session, the parties and the mediator might want to meet separately, or one of the parties and their attorney might want to meet separately. These separate meetings are still part of the mediation session, and are called a Caucus (a caucus is considered part of the mediation process as a private, confidential meeting of members of one side of a dispute).
In a video-conference via Zoom, the mediator will also have the technical capability to separate one or more of the participants into a 'break-out room' without ending or restarting the mediation session. A 'break-out room' allows for confidential conversation for individual participants. These private conversations in the 'break-out rooms' are closed to all other participants.
A 'break-out room' gives the mediator an opportunity to speak privately with each party, outside of the presence of the other party; and a 'break-out' room gives a participant and their attorney an opportunity to speak privately with each other, outside the presence of the other party (or parties), and mediator at their discretion.
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If you're preparing to attend a video conference mediation via Zoom, there are a number of things you might want to consider.
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