So sorry this happened to you Jay. I have to notify other ATF litigants that this has never happened to anyone I’ve represented. Be aware that mediation has always come at no cost. In my cases, I’ve had a settlement judge or a mediator who is usually an attorney looking for experience in mediation. Each time I carefully discussed whether there be an expense to the person bringing the case. Each time I was told ‘no, there was no charge’.
For other litigants.... be sure to address this up front. To get stuck with a $9,000 bill, you would have been required to sign an agreement to pay and it would show the fee for the mediator.
Please folks, tell your attorneys not to sign any agreement until YOU read it. Be careful, ATF is clever and by now you should know that they are trying to break you financially. Ask questions before you begin the mediation and those questions should be about costs.
Folks, you can expect to pay for an arbitrator when his decision is binding, otherwise if it is not binding, question why you’re not simply using a mediator.