Have you heard the complaint that litigation—taking someone to court—is too expensive? That it favors the wealthy? Takes forever to actually get to trial? The unfortunate reality is that there is truth to all of these statements. ADR—or Alternative Dispute Resolution—can provide a solution to these problems. There are many types of ADR, including mediation, arbitration, and less formal settlement negotiations. ADR can be mandatory, such as when there is a contract that requires mediation prior to litigation, or voluntary. ADR can be binding, in which case an arbitrator’s decision is final, or non-binding, in which case either side can proceed to litigation.
The “rules” of ADR can be decided by the parties or set by the arbitrator. Discovery can be expedited, and scheduling is up to the parties and the arbitrator or mediator. The expedited rules and availability of the arbitrator or mediator can decrease the cost substantially. Instead of waiting one, two, or three years for resolution, a case can be decided in months, allowing the parties to put the contested issues in their past and leaving them free to get on with more productive and healthier endeavors in their lives.
Philip Anderson has been involved in ADR for over 25 years. He is an approved arbitrator for the Deschutes County Court system as well as the Arbitration Service of Portland. He has been involved in mediating or settling hundreds of cases. Through the years, Mr. Anderson has acquired a reputation for his ability to quickly grasp the legal and factual issues and to reach unbiased decisions. If you feel ADR might be an avenue worth exploring in regard to a dispute you have, or if you are an attorney considering ADR as a way of “leveling the playing field” or reaching a fair result in a cost-effective and timely manner, give Mr. Anderson a call today.