These are the three processes used to resolve conflict outside of court using a neutral third party, known as ‘Alternative Dispute Resolution’, or ADR. We support use of these methods wherever possible, and will guide you through with an experienced hand.
Mediation: Mediation is a process in which an independent mediator assists a couple to resolve all of the practical issues arising from their separation. A mediator is neutral and provides information, not advice, to help the couple organise their thoughts, gather all relevant information and think through the pros and cons of each of the choices they have.
The outcome of mediation is a set of proposals on which the couple are encouraged to take legal advice before their lawyers make any such proposals binding.
Collaborative Law: Collaborative law is a form of negotiation in which the separating couple and their lawyers commit to resolving all of their practical issues arising from their separation without litigating through a Court process. Negotiations, advice and discussions all take place in four-way meetings involving the couple and their lawyers so that there is complete transparency about the legal advice being given. The commitment of all four people is reinforced by their agreement that if the negotiations break down the couple will have to use different lawyers if they wish to use the litigation route.
Arbitration: Arbitration is a form of private dispute adjudication taking the place of the Court process but conducted in private. The arbitration process is flexible and is adapted to the needs of the parties. The Arbitrator makes a binding decision about any questions the couple their advisors which to put to the Arbitrator. The Arbitrators ‘award’ is then made into a Court order.