It is important to remember disputes are normal. If you have previously done some research on ADR, you may have noticed that there are a lot of different types of ADR. What can be confusing is that many sources sometimes use different names for similar processes. But not to worry! As long as the process helps in resolving your issues in an appropriate way, it does not really matter what the process is called. So before we get into whether ADR is the best approach to resolve disputes, let’s go through what ADR actually is and types of ADR. What is ADR? ADR is a process where an independent person such as a mediator, helps people in dispute to resolve issues between them. If you are struggling to come to an agreement with your former partner, whether it be a family law issue, property split issue, child custody, ADR might be a useful tool. Types of ADR Negotiation You may have already used this process in your day to day lives. This process can be effective if you and your partner listen to and hear each other out, work out what issues are in dispute and what is important to each person, and aim to reach a workable agreement. Mediation In mediation, the parties try to resolve the issue with the assistance of an independent person such as mediator. Each party listens to the other party’s points of view and contribute to the discussion. Please note if you do not feel secure when communicating with your partner then mediation may be unsuitable for you. Conciliation This process can be similar to mediation. What makes conciliation different is the conciliator’s role which may be more directive and advisory. It may be suitable when parties have tried negotiation, but no agreement has been reached. Arbitration It is a type of ADR where the parties present arguments and evidence to an independent third party. If the mediation and conciliation process has not helped you reach an agreement, then arbitration can be particularly useful. As opposed to mediation and conciliation, in arbitration there is a much greater need to produce evidence or facts. You will also need to agree before the process that the arbitrator’s decision will be binding and enforceable. Why ADR? Cost effective: Going to court can be very expensive. Choosing an ADR process to help sort out issues between the parties, will save you on attorney costs and fees. Speed: Not only will you save on legal costs but you will also have less strain on your time by avoiding court proceedings. Going to court hearings and trials can be a lengthy process and time-consuming. The use of ADR is much quicker. Flexibility and Control: You may have seen that at court hearing, parties do not have much control over the dispute and the way it is handled. Good news! With ADR, you have more control over the dispute and choose what issues to raise. Privacy and confidentiality: Nobody likes their personal issues to go public. Except for a few exceptional cases, most of the court proceedings are conducted in public. Choosing ADR will allow you to conduct the process in private. Win-win situation: ADR helps you to achieve results that work for all the parties involved in the dispute. Is ADR best for you? Whether or not ADR is best for you is dependent upon the nature and complexity of each case as well as other factors, such as a party’s willingness to corporate. Although generally ADR has been effective in resolving many disputes, it may not always be appropriate. Say for example your former partner is trying to sell of the matrimonial property without your knowledge. In such matter of immediacy, ADR may not be suitable as you would want to prevent the other party from selling off the property that you may have a legal or equitable interest in. At Cudmore Legal, we understand that it can be frustrating and difficult when your former partner is not willing to compromise. You do not have to go through it all on your own. We are always here to point you in the right direction.