How does a mediation happen? It happens one of two ways. The first way is by agreement of the parties involved in the lawsuit. That generally means the lawyers that represent the opposing sides will have talked and assessed whether mediation is a good idea. They will have gone back to their clients, and asked, “Hey, do we want to mediate?” If both clients agree, then there is a mediation by agreement of the parties.
The other way that you end up in mediation is a court orders you to go there and you don’t have a choice. If a court makes an order for you to go to mediation, you must go.
That leads to a question: Why would a court order you into a mediation that you don’t want? Because a high percentage of trust and will disputes still settle at mediation. Because mediation is going to have a retired judge who has seen these cases hundreds of times acting a mediator. The mediator can help focus the parties on what a fair outcome is for the matter and then most people realize that litigation isn’t a lot of fun and that a mediated settlement would make sense to resolve the entire matter.