Alternative Dispute Resolution
Resolving Conflicts Beyond The Courtroom
Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) encompasses arbitration, mediation, and other conflict resolution procedures through which disputes are resolved as an alternative to formal litigation. With increasing court backlogs, lengthy proceedings, and escalating legal fees, ADR has become an increasingly popular option in dispute resolution. The reduction of time and cost resulting from pursuing alternative dispute resolution over litigation is often substantial. It is therefore not surprising that ADR procedures are now often required under many private party contracts. ADR procedures include, without limitation:
- Legal Arbitration
Arbitration is, in essence, a private court proceeding agreed upon by the parties. As such, the arbitrators' decision is binding. The parties, however, have more control than would be allowed in a court of law. They can determine who the arbitrators will be, how many, the arbitrators' areas of expertise, as well as other procedural and substantive factors. Arbitrations can be used for everything from domestic to international disputes. A major advantage of arbitration over litigation is that the final judgment is unlikely to be challenged as it is so difficult to overturn.
- Legal Mediation
Mediation is the least adversarial approach to dispute resolution. It is a nonbinding process in which a neutral party, the mediator, works with parties to arrive at a mutually satisfactory agreement. The mediator seeks to facilitate dialogue by creating an environment and framework, identifying the real (as opposed to "expressed") issues and attempts to generate options for settlement. While the process is nonbinding, any agreement reached by the parties is legally binding. Even when mediation is unsuccessful it frequently unearths information helpful in discovery if litigation is required.
Members of the firm's Alternative Dispute Resolution Team have substantial experience in serving clients in ADR proceedings as arbitrators, mediators or advocates. The attorneys in this practice area rely on the full strength of Offit Kurman Attorneys At Law Litigation Department and lawyers from our other departments, as needed.
To learn more about how Offit Kurman's alternative dispute resolution services benefit you or your business please click the link below.