BENEFITS OF ADR
In an effort to encourage the use of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Mechanisms to solve disputes, we shall embark on a new series “ADR 101”. The aim is to introduce and educate all interested parties about ADR.
What is ADR?
This refers to the methods of resolving disputes outside of litigation. It includes but is not limited to arbitration, mediation, negotiation and conciliation. These methods are preferred because they are faster and flexible rules are applied.
Benefits of ADR
The litigation process is long and cumbersome. ADR mechanisms are fast and efficient. These methods are ideal when dealing with matters that are urgent and a decision is required immediately.
One of the disadvantages of the litigation process is that there are many stringent rules that may be used to defeat a case. To curb this, ADR mechanisms are flexible and the rules followed are mostly decided on by the parties in the conflict. For example, arbitration is similar to the court process in that the parties can call witness and the arbitrator essentially functions as a judge. However, there are less strict rules concerning evidence.
Not only are the rules flexible but also the solution. The solution can be adjusted to suit the circumstances and the parties.
Information in the court system is available to the public. ADR has the advantage that all proceedings are private and can only be disclosed to the public if parties consent.
- Party centered
The main benefit of ADR mechanisms is that the process is party and interest centered. The proceedings focus on the parties and the interest that have caused the conflict. This prevents the advocates hijacking the matter and prolonging it over matters that are not relevant to the conflict.
- Relatively inexpensive
This is the case because the matter is resolved quickly and therefore reduces the amount of money that the parties would have to spend. In the case of litigation matters are prolonged and not only do parties have to pay the advocate fees, they also need to pay court fees as prescribed by the laws.
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