Daily Archives: November 9, 2017

Why Is Alternative Dispute Resolution a Better Way to Resolve Disputes?

Two couples fighitng with a judge in the middleMany people will find themselves entangled in a dispute at least once in their lifetime. Most of the time, the involved parties can agree on resolutions. But, in a worst-case scenario, one of the parties might take the whole thing to court. This is where it gets ugly, and not to mention, expensive. Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) is a less expensive and more private alternative than litigation. Arbitration and mediation services provide the individuals involved in a civil dispute a way to settle their issues without having to go to court.

Mediation Versus Arbitration

The two forms of ADR are mediation and arbitration. These two functions pretty much the same way — they try to resolve the issue outside of the court system. The two only differ slightly.

Mediation allows both parties to talk to each other in a neutral environment with a mediator (usually a lawyer) present to try and resolve their dispute and see if they can agree. Mediation cannot ensure the resolution of the dispute as the mediator does not have any power to enforce one. The only thing a mediator can do is try to give impartial advice on the matter.

The two parties must agree on a settlement for it to be successful. However, if one or both sides no longer want to continue with the mediation process, they can terminate it anytime.

Arbitration, on the other hand, is more formal than mediation. An arbitrator has the power to decide on a resolution based on the evidence and other information provided by the disputing parties. Although the arbitration process takes place outside of the court system, the decision made by the arbitrator is enforceable by law. It is legally binding.

Arbitration usually takes place when mediation fails. Some employers clearly state in the contract that the company can only resolve disputes through arbitration. Unlike with mediation, you cannot stop the arbitration process once started.

Benefits of ADR

ADR is a very popular way to resolve disputes because it’s not only less expensive than a full-blown litigation; it is also more private. The results of mediation or arbitration are strictly kept confidential by the mediator or arbitrator. A court battle can get ugly and might take a long time to resolve. ADR aims to resolve disputes as fast and as amicably as possible.