THE THREE TYPES OF ALTERNATIVE DISPUTE RESOLUTION

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Many people are turning to Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) methods in order to help them resolve their divorceand the related issues like child custody and parenting time, child support, spousal support, and division of assets. ADR can be appealing because it helps resolve divorces outside of the public court system, meaning divorces are more private, and many times can be significantly cheaper than a traditional divorce.

There are currently three principal methods of Alternative Dispute Resolution, mediation, collaboration, and arbitration. We'll discuss each of these methods below, the advantages and disadvantages they offer, and how these forms of alternative dispute resolution can help you to privately, quickly, and cheaply resolve your Morris County divorce.

Morristown Divorce Lawyers Discuss "Mediation"

Perhaps the most common method of ADR, mediation involves a divorcing couple hiring a single, trained mediator, whose goal is to help the couple communicate and make the compromises necessary in any divorce case. A mediator will not make any decisions for the couple, and will remain completely neutral at all times. Many people think believe that mediation is not possible in their case, that their exists too many disagreements, but the fact of the matter is that as long as both parties are willing to compromise with one another, mediation can remain an effective way of resolving key divorce issues.

Parsippany Divorce Attorneys Discuss "Collaboration"

Collaboration is similar to mediation in that couples who are willing to work together to find acceptable solutions to their divorce issues can find success with collaboration. The difference between collaboration and mediation however, is that while mediation involves only a single, trained Morristown mediator, collaboration involves both parties hiring their own Morris County divorce collaborator in order to help them find acceptable solutions to issues like child custody, child support, alimony, and division of marital property.


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Collaboration allows both parties to work with a Randolph divorce attorney with whom they feel comfortable, and whose advice they trust, while still keeping the divorce out of the court system, allowing for more informal and private processes. Collaboration is of particular benefit when there is a distinct imbalance of power in the marriage. If one party tends to dominate the discussion, a mediator, who must remain neutral, cannot speak for the less assertive party. In collaboration however, since your collaborator is working specifically for you, and not both parties, they can give you the support and confidence you need to express what things are most important to you in your divorce settlement, or conversely, let you know when you are overpowering the discussion, and need to give the other party a chance to speak.

It is important to note that, should you be unable to reach an acceptable settlement through collaboration and subsequently need to settle your divorce in court, your collaborator is barred from representing you as your divorce attorney in divorce court.

Roxbury Divorce Lawyers Discuss "Arbitration"

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The third commonly used method of Alternative Dispute Resolution is known as Arbitration. In arbitration, the divorcing couple chooses a single, neutral divorce arbitrator, who will listen to arguments presented by both parties, and make a ruling, similar to what a judge would do in a traditional divorce court.

That being said, the divorcing party can either choose to pursue a binding arbitration, or non-binding arbitration. A binding arbitration means that both parties waive their right to a trial, and whatever settlements the neutral arbitrator finds equitable and fair are final. In a non-binding arbitration however, if one or both parties feel that the final settlement is unfair, they can still request a divorce hearing and have a judge decide the terms of the divorce sttlement.Arbitration is typically used when a couple cannot agree on a resolution for their divorce disputes, but still wish to keep their divorce out of public family law court. In arbitration, a single arbitrator is chosen to listen to both parties' arguments and evidence, and after doing so the arbitrator will decide the outcomes of the various disputes involved.

Arbitration is generally chosen by couples who wish to keep their divorce out of the public court system, but still prefer the final decisions be left to a neutral party, rather than try and compromise between the parties and a mediator or collaborators. If you wish to retain a lot of control over the exact terms and process of your divorce or alternative dispute resolution process, then arbitration is probably not right for you.

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Laufer, Dalena, Jensen & Bradley, LLC

23 Cattano Avenue
Morristown, NJ 07960

Phone: 973-975-4043
Phone: 973-975-4043
Fax: 973-285-0271
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