Although empirical evidence indicates that mediation is remarkably effective at assisting disputing parties in resolving disputes, there are instances in which a settlement is not reached. Even if mediation does not immediately result in a settlement, the mediation was not necessarily a failure. Often, parties will report that issues were narrowed during the mediation, and the parties may later have further mediation sessions or direct discussions that result in a resolution. In those instances where the matter is not resolved, the parties are free to continue to pursue litigation or such other remedies as may be available.