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Could mediation be right choice to resolve your dispute?

Though both can be a good way to resolve disputes of all types, it is likely that many individuals do not know what mediation or arbitration are. Though they are both methods of alternative dispute resolution, they are not the same thing. Whether one of the processes might be used to resolve an issue you have depends on your situation.

There are similarities that both of the processes share. In addition to being a way to resolve an issue without going to court, they both involve the use of a neutral third party referred to as an arbitrator or mediator. There are of course some ways in which they are different.

During the course of arbitration the third-party will listen to both sides and then decide how it should be resolved. In essence, that individual acts as the jury or judge and makes the decision based on information and evidence provided by those involved in the dispute.

Mediation differs from arbitration because the individual who acts as the mediator does not actually decide how the issue will be resolved. Instead, the impartial third-party helps the parties involved in the dispute to reach a solution that works for all. In many situations this is reached as a result of the mediator’s work to help the participants focus on what is really most important to each party.

There are many reasons why an ADR method such as mediation might be selected by individuals involved in a dispute. While the time and cost associated with the process is much less than litigation, the reduction in the stress that nearly always accompanies such an incident makes it appealing as well.

Source: The Huffington Post, “Wondering What The Difference Is Between Mediation and Arbitration?” Lance Soskin, May 9, 2014

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