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What is Alternative Dispute Resolution?

Our Hoffman Estates Attorneys Work to Resolve Cases Outside of the Courtroom

Very few legal cases ever reach a courtroom. The vast majority are settled out of court through alternatives to litigation. In many instances, this is a significantly better option for one or more of the parties involved. While trials can be effective in some situations, it is important to understand that not every legal claim needs to end in a prolonged, expensive court battle.

Those involved in legal conflicts often turn to alternative dispute resolution, such as arbitration or mediation. Our Hoffman Estates lawyers are qualified to handle cases in litigation, and have gained successful results for their clients through alternative dispute resolution methods. We are able to provide effective counsel for businesses and individuals, and help them decide when to work through an issue by using arbitration or mediation.

What are Arbitration and Mediation?

Arbitration and mediation are two different types of alternative dispute resolution. Arbitration involves at least one neutral arbitrator, agreed upon by the conflicting parties, to make a decision about the case. The arbitrator examines the evidence of the case and makes a ruling for the parties to follow. The major benefit of arbitration over litigation is that arbitration is a private proceeding; the records and the proceeding are closed to the public.

Mediation utilizes the services of a neutral mediator who negotiates with the parties to find a solution for a dispute. Unlike the arbitrator, the mediator does not make a judgment, but rather facilitates discussion between the parties and attempts to find a solution on which both parties can agree. Mediators often use creative techniques to offer mutually beneficial solutions that might be unavailable in litigation.

When is Alternative Dispute Resolution Effective?

Trial litigation can be a long, public process that can accumulate thousands of dollars in legal fees. One of the most common reasons for resorting to a form of alternative dispute resolution is that it saves time and limits costs. In fact, arbitration functions much like a court case, but the resolution can occur much sooner than in a courtroom.

Alternative dispute resolution can also preserve relationships, which could be important in probate cases involving conflicts between family members. Mediation can be particularly effective, because it commonly results in compromise. Both methods of alternative dispute resolution may allow individuals to get what they want without losing friends or business partners.

Additionally, arbitration and mediation are private. This differs from cases litigated in courts, as courts are public procedures and anyone can know the details. In alternative dispute resolution, the discussion about your claim does not leave the room, which encourages both parties to speak their minds and come up with unique and beneficial solutions.

Where Can I Find Representation for Arbitration or Mediation?

At Pluymert, MacDonald, Hargrove & Lee, Ltd., our attorneys provide legal representation for mediation and arbitration for individuals, businesses and not-for-profit organizations. Partner James H. Pluymert is a certified Christian Conciliator through Peacemaker Ministries, and he has experience mediating for a number of faith-based organizations. Our attorneys guarantee high-quality representation for all of our clients. Call our office today for assistance finding an alternative dispute resolution that suits your needs.

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