Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) techniques are are becoming more and more popular as opposed to the expensive process of litigation. As your Jacksonville construction lawyers we understand the importance of being aware of the different ADR techniques, and have used our knowledge and experience to compile a list of 5 of the most common techniques. To view the next half of this article, visit Part 2.
Negotiation is one of the most direct ways to resolve disputes, however it can be swept under the rug as an option due to a lack of effort. Negotiation is a voluntary process where the disputing parties strive to reach a mutual agreement with unstructured discussions. An effective negotiator will juggle multiple focuses. They will try to satisfy both parties’ interests without pinpointing who is right and who is wrong. Their main objective is problem solving. During negotiation, the parties are the ones in charge of their outcome, no final result is charged, and the parties are free to leave at any time. Negotiation is less confrontational, and is a great tool for situations when the parties hope to preserve their business relationship and encourage future interaction.
Mediation is very similar to negotiation in many aspects. Both tactics are private, informal, and voluntary. Additionally, they both directly focus on problem-solving as opposed to deciding who is right and who is wrong. The parties also decide the outcome themselves in both of these processes. There are some differences, however. In mediation, a neutral third party is chosen with a mutual agreement to assist the parties in their resolution. The mediator will hear each side’s story and help to come up with a few ideas for resolution. The mediator’s role is to inspire each party to try and understand the interests of their opposing party, however the mediator does not have the authority to press upon an outcome to the parties if they are unable to reach an agreement. Parties can choose mediation at any stage of the dispute, even after the lawsuit has already been filed. A good idea for anyone entering a contract is to include a “mediation clause” in the contract, which will necessitate the parties to try mediation before a lawsuit if a dispute occurs. If both parties agree, they can mutually decide upon their mediator with the assistance of their Jacksonville construction lawyer.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.