ADR Services – What Works Best in Your Situation?
Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) forms can be quite helpful for business owners who find themselves ensnared in legal disputes and conflicts with customers and/or other businesses. Litigation takes time, and as the old saying goes, “Time is money.” The more time your business spends in the courtroom, the greater the impact those disputes and conflicts will have on your business’s profitability. In many cases, ADR can resolve a business’s disputes more quickly and more economically than proceeding to trial, especially if an experienced attorney is assisting you through the ADR process. Knowing what types of disputes are best handled by ADR forms is essential to obtaining the greatest benefit for you and your business.
What is the Best ADR Form for My Business Dispute?
There are two main types of alternative dispute resolution: mediation and arbitration. In mediation, the parties to the dispute work with a neutral, third-party mediator whose task is to foster discussion between the parties in the hope that the parties will reach an agreement to resolve their case. The mediator’s role is not to determine who is “right” and who is “wrong,” but rather to foster an understanding of each party’s legal positions and claims. Conversely, arbitration involves submitting the dispute to a third-party arbitrator who acts as a sort of judge. The arbitrator presides over a “trial” in which evidence is presented and testimony received (although the evidentiary rules are typically relaxed so that the hearing can proceed much more quickly). At the end of the hearing, the arbitrator renders a decision to resolve the case.
Mediation may be the appropriate ADR form if:
You and the other party are both desirous of avoiding trial;You believe you can have an honest and productive conversation with the other party;Neither you nor the other party have strong and well-supported positions in the dispute;You want to avoid a situation in which there are “winners” and “losers” but instead want to collaborate and cooperate.
Arbitration may be the more appropriate ADR form if:
You and the other party want to avoid the expenses and costs associated with trial;You and the other party have not had fruitful discussions regarding the resolution of your dispute;There is disagreement between you and the other party as to whether one of you or the other is at fault.
This article was originally published on jgpc.com.