On behalf of Stephen Bedor of Law Office of Stephen J. Bedor posted in alternative dispute resolution on Friday, December 7, 2018.
Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) can be a great help for couples who are struggling to get through a divorce without fighting. It's possible to work together to resolve problems as they arise instead of turning to the judge for all final decisions.
There are a few different kinds of ADR, including mediation, arbitration, settlement conferences and neutral evaluation. Through these forms of ADR, you can reach a settlement with your spouse without the lengthiness of a trial. Here's what you should know about each.
During a mediation session, the mediator helps by listening to both sides and helping both parties understand their rights and options. The mediator does not control the outcome of the case.
Arbitration is different than mediation because an arbitrator has the final say over the parties involved. Arbitration isn't as formal as a trial, and it's generally faster. Arbitration can be binding or nonbinding, depending on the agreement between the parties.
These conferences might be mandatory or voluntary, depending on where you live. During a settlement conference, a settlement officer acts a neutral party to find ways to resolve any dispute with both parties and their attorneys. The officer doesn't make the final decision, but they will help the parties weigh their options and try to keep the case from going to litigation.
With neutral evaluation, each party speaks with a neutral evaluator. The evaluator then gives each party a personal opinion on the strengths and weaknesses of their evidence and claims. The opinion isn't binding, but it can be helpful when negotiating a resolution to the case.
These are four kinds of alternative dispute resolution that could be helpful for your divorce case. If you are interested in exploring them, our firm can help you determine whether or not they are right for your situation.