Sometimes, instead of taking a case to court, people choose to apply alternative dispute resolution or ADR. This is a process through which people choose to settle disputes sometimes. It involves using the processes of negotiation, arbitration, and mediation with the help of a third-party mediator or arbitrator. Various situations, such as family disputes, divorce settlements, labor disputes, and workplace conflicts can benefit from ADR.
People often prefer to go through this process rather than go to court as it is a less expensive method of dispute resolution. It is also quicker than court proceedings. It leaves the two parties with the freedom to decide the best outcome for themselves, without the dictates of the court. It also allows more solutions than possible under a legal framework.
The main difference between mediation and arbitration is that in mediation, the dispute is resolved involving a third-party mediator who helps the two parties reach some kind of agreement or settlement. In arbitration, the settlement is decided upon by the third-party counselor who puts forward a solution. It is up to the two parties to reject or accept this offer. Here, we describe some scenarios that can benefit from the ADR process.
If you and your spouse are getting a divorce, it is possible to decide on issues such as child support, child custody, and the division of properties based on mediation. This is less confrontational and quicker than a typical in-court settlement process. You are able to get help from a divorce attorney who offers arbitration and mediation services; they can give you valuable advice. It is often the first step in divorce proceedings. However, it is not recommended if there has been instances of domestic violence.
Mediation and arbitration prove to be very helpful when the party who brings up accusations can benefit from being heard by the accused and have a face-to-face discussion. This is particularly true in labor disputes. Union leaders and company managers can benefit from negotiations that can help foster a different culture of communication in the workplace.
In case of lawsuits
When a lawsuit is brought against an individual or a company, it is in their best interest to settle it out of court. This may be because it is easier to reach agreements out of court, or it may be because it is in their best interest to keep the case as low-profile as possible, such as if the individual’s reputation is at stake. During court processes, information may come to light, which might jeopardize the public image of the company or individual.
It is always a good idea to seek help from arbitrators and mediators before launching in a lengthy legal battle. Sometimes, the law mandates going through negotiation before going to court, such as in the case of certain landlord-tenant issues. All things considered, the benefits in terms of cost savings, increased discretion, and privacy and the option to have more flexible, non-zero-sum settlements make ADR a welcome option for many.