Alternative Dispute Resolution Mechanisms

2690 Words11 Pages
The resolution of disputes through alternative dispute resolution mechanisms has gained momentum over recent decades. It has increasingly occupied space in the academic literature as the “new” method to achieve “justice” for disputing parties. It is important to note that a variety of definitions of “justice” can be relied upon. However, in many cases, justice will mean the parties being able to resolve their dispute fairly, justly and amicably by applying law or legal principles. Traditional legal mechanisms for resolving disputes have been increasingly questioned as to whether they are actually capable of achieving justice in individual cases. The value of ADR is that it allows parties to depart from the formal structures of the law to resolve their disputes in an informal arena unique to the facts of their individual case, thereby achieve justice in an alternative way. A frequent theme discussed in the literature, such as Leasure, is the numerous advantages of ADR with three primarily reasons frequently reappearing as the rationale for ADR over other forms of dispute resolution. These include the cost saving advantages of being able to achieve justice without the costs associated with traditional legal resolution mechanisms , the speed at which resolution can be achieved is faster and the parties are able to retain an element of control over the proceedings. There are several manifestations of ADR including arbitration, mediation, negotiation and conciliation but the concentration on this paper is on mediation. For the purposes of analysis in this essay, mediation can be defined as “as being a process where two or more parties agree to the submission of their dispute to an independent third party with the aim of the me... ... middle of paper ... ...ble between the parties that are not necessarily evident in court procedures. The ability of the mediation to allow the disputing parties to tailor justice to meet their own particular needs can be regarded as being an extremely positive development. The increasing reliance on ADR, including mediation, within the traditional confines of justice systems can be regarded as the means of the courts being able to manage their caseloads so that parties are not exclusively relying on the courts to impose settlements. But, there is a key concern which may require further research. The ADR processes may be subjected to an overload of cases if the processes are not monitored to reflect contemporary needs. Therefore, it is recommended that ADR in every part of the justice system, civil and criminal, is monitored so as to ensure the perceived advantages of ADR are maintained.

More about Alternative Dispute Resolution Mechanisms

Open Document