Arbitration is a private, confidential process in which parties to a dispute leave the ultimate resolution of their matter to an independent third party. Much like the Court imposes a decision, an arbitrator has the power to resolve the dispute. The arbitrator will receive information related to the dispute from all parties, and hear everyone's position. Using what the arbitrator has learned from the individuals, she will apply the law and render a decision which the parties generally agree will be binding on them. The arbitration will end with an outcome, putting an end to the dispute.
Most people think judges know everything there is to know about all aspects of the law. In this age of specialization, the judge assigned to hear your family dispute may have spent his entire life focused on only one area of law - real estate, securities, or criminal law for instance - and never involved himself in family matters before he was appointed to the bench. In contrast to litigation where one cannot choose the judge, arbitration allows the parties to choose a neutral third party with experience and expertise in the specific and relevant area of law to decide their matter. Arbitrators can therefore often give better decisions because of their knowledge, experience and expertise in a specific area of law.
Arbitration proceedings are usually faster than the Courts because the parties can devise a process which is as limited as necessary. Many of the traditional legal steps can be reduced or eliminated thereby streamlining the process. By saving time and steps, the parties involved can reduce costs. By tailoring the process the parties can find an efficient, economical and effective method to reach a settlement.
Arbitration is an excellent alternative to the traditional litigation process.