Dispute Resolution

Alternative Dispute Resolution VS. Judicial Dispute Resolution.

Dispute resolution is simply a process of resolving disputes. This can be done both in a court of law, or in what is referred to as Alternative Dispute Resolution. Alternative Dispute Resolution refers to the resolution of disputes through extrajudicial means, such as:

  • Arbitration: An unbiased 3rd party agreed upon by both parties to listen to the dispute and both party’s sides. The arbitrator will then make a decision based on evidence, whereas both disputing parties have agreed to in advance to comply with the award, or decision.
  • Collaborative law: Traditionally used as a way to dissolve a marriage and other family to resolve legal separation concerns with a lawyer(s) rather than deal with the uncertain decisions of the court.
  • Mediation: A form of negotiation, where a mediator is used to help both parties talk through their conflict in order to provide the best results for all parties involved. This often enables resolution, and agreement by both parties while attempting to prevent the hostility toward each other that going to court may cause.

If a resolution cannot be achieved through a collaborative process, then the alternative is the judicial process where at least one party of the dispute believes they need the professional decision of lawyers and judge to make a decision and enforce the laws they feel have been betrayed by the other party. Litigation is the most popular type of judicial dispute resolution. Litigation is initiated when one party files a suit against another. While the verdict of the court, whether judge or jury, is final, both parties have the ability to appeal the judgement.

Many law firms will provide all services of judicial and alternative dispute resolution. Often, it is in the best interest of all parties, including the law firm to resolve disputes in an alternative dispute resolution setting. Law firms will often have entire teams staffed solely for this purpose.

With a large percentage of litigated matters settling as a result of mediation—courts statistics show as high as 96%–many law firms find this is a significant means of settling disputes, especially when parties involved will continue to work, interact, and live with each other after the settlement. In addition, mediation is typically and mandatory step required by higher courts, prior to or, as part of the litigation process.

In dispute resolution, it is highly regarded that mediation, or collaborative resolution will provide the fairest and most compromise-able option.  Both options will provide cost-savings, while preserving relationships, and affording both parties to feel as if their concerns are being heard by professionals, as well as having control of the agreed upon terms of the dispute resolution.

A law firm specializing in mediation-trained lawyers, or alternative dispute resolution provides the benefit of experience, as well as an understanding and approach to the dispute that single-perception parties may not see.

Nearly any dispute has the ability to be resolved through Alternative Dispute Resolution. Common disputes are:


To resolve your dispute in the most effective way, you should discuss whether Alternative Dispute Resolution, or Judicial Dispute Resolution is the best option for you, as well as the potential gains of each. Where Alternative Dispute Resolution may provide an option to those looking for a compromising agreement where both parties can walk away satisfied, Judicial Dispute Resolution can provide clear resolution enforced by the court of law.

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