To solve construction contract disputes, mediation is not only fast and inexpensive, it keeps business relationships and reputations intact. In mediation there is nothing to lose. If it doesn't work, parties can always fall back on arbitration or litigation. And nothing that transpires during mediation can be used in arbitration or litigation. Records aren't kept and the hearings are private not public. But mediation seems to work. About 90% of the construction parties who decide to mediate resolve their disputes amicably. Mediation works best if it's sought right away. Negotiated settlement is what mediation is all about. Both sides must be willing to accept less than their total demands. To ensure mediation takes place in an organized way, the American Arbitration Association (AAA) has set up rules for the hearings.