Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)

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Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)

Today the United States is a "sue happy" country. Over the last fifty years the crime rate has gone up. According to, United Stated rank first in total crime with 23,677,800 which is much more than the second place Germany with 6,264,720. Total crime in this only includes rapes, murders, assaults, car theft. This information comes from the Seventh United Nations Survey of Crime Trends which covers 1988 to 2000.

We have been introduced to a lot of new crimes that has arisen from the constant advancement in technology and more. There are a lot of white collar crimes. "The Supreme Court's caseload has grown substantially over time. John Marshall's first term as chief justice, the Court delivered only 15 opinions; in 1853 that number rose to 46, a pitiful handful by today's standards. By 1853, the number of cases docketed had risen to 253, still small compared to the current docket of more than 7,500. So too workload of lower federal courts have grown. In the 1820s, about 3500 cases were pending in the nation's circuit and district courts. In 1997 alone, litigants filed more than 270,000 cases in the U.S. district court and more than 50,000 in court of appeals."(Murphy 88)

With all these cases filed and all these cases that are appealed, there are not enough judges or courts for that matter, to handles all these cases. This is why the we have come up with Alternative Dispute Resolutions(ADR). ADR first came about 1960s. Alternative Dispute Resolution simply refers to any way to solve a legal problem without having to go to court. Alternative Dispute Resolutions(ADR) doesn't just deal with minor cases.. Even the Federal government have come up with Alternative Dispute Resolutions(ADR) Working Group which is a branch of the Office of Disputes Resolution at the U.S. Justice Department. Congress and the President established the Working Group to coordinate, promote, and facilitate the effective use of ADR in the government, pursuant to the Administrative Dispute Resolution Act of 1996. (Cinciotta)

The Administrative Dispute Resolution Act (ADRA) of 1996 requires federal agencies to have policies that address the use of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) techniques and to appoint a Dispute Resolution Specialist. For the purpose of the statute, "alternative means of dispute resolution" include conciliation, mediation, facilitation, fact-finding, minitrials and the use of "ombuds." (Administrative Dispute Resolution Act of 1996.)

There are many different kinds of Alternative Dispute Resolutions.

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