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Alternative Dispute Resolution: What Does It Mean?

ADR, or Alternative Dispute Resolution, is a term used in the legal system to refer to methods of settling disputes outside of the traditional court system. There are many different types of ADR, but they all share a common goal: to resolve disputes as quickly and efficiently as possible. ADR can be a great option for people who want to avoid the hassle and expense of going to court. It can also be a good choice for people who want to maintain control over their case. If you’re considering using ADR to settle your dispute, here’s what you need to know.

Are ADR methods legally-binding?

In many jurisdictions, courts can be called upon to review the efficacy of ADR methods. However, if the parties involved in a courtroom battle formed a proper agreement to follow the rules, courts will rarely reverse or modify ADR decisions and rewards.

alternative dispute resolution

What Is an Alternative Dispute Resolution?

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) is a process used to resolve disputes outside of the traditional court system. ADR can take many forms, such as mediation, arbitration, or negotiation. The parties involved in the dispute choose which ADR method they would like to use in order to come to a resolution. 

There are many benefits to using ADR, such as saving time and money, avoiding litigation, and preserving relationships between parties. Additionally, ADR is typically faster than going through the court system, and it can be less expensive and more confidential than traditional litigation. 

Alternative Dispute Resolution Methods:

Some common Alternative Dispute Resolution methods include mediation, arbitration, conciliation, negotiation, and transaction. 


Mediation is a process of dispute resolution in which an impartial third party facilitates communication between the parties to help them reach an agreement. Mediation is often used in the context of divorce, but can be used for any type of dispute. The mediator does not make decisions or impose settlements; rather, they help the parties to reach their own agreement.


Arbitration is a form of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) in which the parties to a dispute agree to have one or more impartial persons, called arbitrators, resolve the dispute. The arbitrators are usually lawyers, but may be other experts. Arbitration is often chosen instead of going to court because it is cheaper and faster than going to court, and the results are confidential.

Arbitration clauses are found in many contracts, including contracts for goods and services, employment contracts, and real estate transactions. Parties often choose arbitration because they believe that it will be fairer and less expensive than going to court.


Conciliation in the US law is a process of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), whereby the parties to a dispute attempt to resolve their differences with the help of a neutral third party. The conciliator helps the parties to communicate better and reach an agreement. This process is typically used in cases where the parties want to avoid going to trial.


Negotiation as an ADR is a process of resolving disputes between parties without resorting to litigation. In negotiation, the parties involved attempt to reach an agreement on their own, with the help of a neutral third party if necessary. The goal is to reach a resolution that is acceptable to both sides. 

Negotiation can be used for any kind of dispute, including those involving contracts, property rights, personal injury, employment, and family law. It is often used in business contexts, but can be useful in any situation where two or more people are in conflict. 

The main advantage of negotiation as an ADR is that it allows the parties involved to maintain control over the outcome of their dispute.


Transaction as an alternative dispute resolution is a process in which the parties to a contract agree to submit their dispute to an arbitrator in order to avoid the costs and delay of going to court.In common law, the term transaction might refer to a negotiation (often written in the form of a contract) between two or more parties that have been reached in order to prevent or end a conflict from going to litigation. These are also known as settlements or compromises.

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