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Alternative Dispute Resolution

Nobody understands the importance of time and money like businesses do, that’s why the last thing you want is to be involved in a lengthy and expensive court case. 

There are various ways that you can resolve a dispute without the time, stress and expense of going through the formal court process, the general term for this is ‘alternative dispute resolution’ or ‘ADR’. Parties who don’t consider or engage in ADR before starting formal court proceedings may find themselves hit with major costs sanctions as a result as one of the court’s aims is for parties to try to resolve matters at the earliest opportunity, certainly before starting court proceedings. 

Our alternative dispute resolution solicitors have experience in dealing with different types of ADR and with all kinds of businesses no matter the dispute. If you’re unsure whether this is right for your business and your situation, give them a call. 

Types of ADR

There are a number of ADR routes that parties to a dispute can take. Just to name a few:

  • Negotiation – this can be a simple round-table meeting with all parties in attendance for example. It’s informal and discussions are on a ‘without prejudice’ basis (this basically means that in the event your dispute proceeds to court, discussions had during negotiation stage cannot be used in court as evidence).
  • Mediation – a neutral third party acts as a go-between between the parties, who are usually in separate rooms, identifying the issues and exploring options for resolution to facilitate an agreement. They don’t take sides, make judgements or provide advice.
  • Arbitration – arbitration is similar to the court process to the extent that an independent arbitrator hears the case and makes a decision which is final and binding on all parties. Some business contracts have an arbitration clause which requires the parties to go through this process in the event of a dispute.
  • Conciliation – this is similar to mediation except a third party will actively assist the parties to settle the dispute, by suggesting which points each party should concede. 
  • Expert determination – this is an informal process and is better served in situations which require technical expertise. An expert is appointed who decides on a technical issue. The expert’s decision is contractually binding on the parties.

Our alternative dispute resolution solicitors are experienced in providing advice and support on a range of issues, including:

  • Contract disputes
  • Debt Recovery
  • Commercial Property disputes
  • Professional Negligence 
  • Shareholder, Partnership or Director Disputes
  • Construction Claims

Why go through ADR?

Generally, going through alternative dispute resolution:

  • Saves time – ADR usually has shorter timescales than going to court. Going through court is usually a more protracted process than most people think. It can sometimes take years for a matter to get to a final hearing. 
  • Saves money – it’s likely to be cheaper to go through ADR than going through the court process. Also, because the courts expect parties to a dispute to have considered ADR, undertaking ADR at an early stage can reduce the likelihood of having costs sanctions imposed on you.
  • Confidential – most ADR options are confidential in nature. This allows all parties to air what may be commercially sensitive information in a bid to come to settle matters.

Sometimes ADR may not be a suitable option because of the circumstances of the case. Perhaps the limitation period on your dispute is about to expire and you need to issue proceedings immediately to protect your claim or you reasonably feel that attempting ADR would be a waste of time for you.

To learn more about ADR methods, speak to our team of solicitors.

Why you should use our alternative dispute resolutions solicitors.

Our alternative dispute resolution solicitors are experienced in providing businesses and entrepreneurs alike with commercially sound advice about ADR and its advantages and disadvantages. Their aim is to meet your business’ needs and objectives.

They will help you make an informed decision as to whether ADR is the best option for you and will assist you every step of the way in a cost-effective manner.

Read our Committed to Excellence pledge – our promise to you that we will work to the highest standard in resolving your dispute.

Contact us

If you believe your business might benefit from having a chat with one of our ADR solicitors based throughout the UK, give us a call on 0333 270 9107. Alternatively, you can contact us here.

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Contact a member of our Litigation team today

If you are looking for legal advice relating to anything set out above or have a more unique issue, we would love to support you. Our solicitors have years of experience and will handle your case with great care and expertise every step of the way. If you need assistance please do not hesitate to contact our team.

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