All parties to disputes are now expected to have attempted some form of ADR before commencing proceedings. One of the most popular is mediation:
Mediation –This is the most common process of ADR and can be undertaken at any time (before and after court proceedings are issued). It is a meeting between the parties in the presence of an appointed mediator who is there to assist and facilitate a resolution. The parties remain in control of the decision to settle and the terms of the settlement. The process is quick, cost effective and can preserve business relationships and has proved to be frequently successful.
Arbitration – Within the construction industry arbitrationremains a popular forum for resolving disputes. It is a confidential, but formal process, binding and enforceable in law, where the parties are able to present their cases in front of an arbitrator who has the relevant technical expertise.
Adjudication – This is a form of Alternative Dispute Resolutionused extensively within the construction industry under the Housing, Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996. It is a quick and cost effective method which allows both sides to put forward their outline arguments to an adjudicator, with a decision made within 28 days, allowing the project to continue.
Adjudication awards are enforceable through the courts however they can not prevent a party referring the same dispute to litigation or arbitration. The cost of the process, save for the costs of the adjudicator, are not always recoverable and so we provide you with a proportionate service.
If you have any questions regarding these types of Alternative Dispute Resolution or require further advice please contact a member of our team.