Alternative dispute resolution is a great way to get through your divorce without needing to go through a trial. It can be difficult to cope with a divorce and all the negotiations that come with it, but it’s possible even if you and your spouse don’t agree on everything.

Alternative dispute resolution usually involves one of two methods of dispute resolution, arbitration or mediation. Arbitration is the more formal of the two, while mediation is handled in generally casual environment.

Is mediation or arbitration better for dispute resolution?

It all depends on the kind of dispute you’re dealing with and if you and your spouse are willing to talk things through. For example, if you’re arguing over how you’ll divide up artwork, furniture or other possessions but won’t budge on what you want, then arbitration would allow an arbitrator to hear both of your arguments and to make a binding decision. That would end the dispute and allow you both to move forward.

On the other hand, if you have a custody plan that is in dispute, you both may want to try mediation first. Mediation comes with the guidance of a mediator who is familiar with law and resolving disputes. With custody plans, it’s best that both parties are on the same page and in agreement so that there can be fewer disputes in the future. Mediation isn’t binding, and a mediator won’t make a decision for you. Instead, they’ll do their best to help you and your spouse come up with an agreement that works.

The kind of alternative dispute resolution you choose could vary depending on the specifics of your case. Our website has more about these alternatives and what you need to consider if you want to avoid trial.