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6 Pages Essays / Projects Year: Pre-2019

Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) is the ‘processes by which matters are resolved outside the usual court-based litigation model’ ; such processes commonly include, but are not limited to, mediation and arbitration. Litigation is the process by which a case is heard before a court as initiated by a plaintiff against a defendant. Litigation has been the main method by which civil disputes have been settled, however more recently ADR has been recognised as a flexible and efficacious method capable of being tailored to the needs of each party. Whilst ADR exhibits certain advantages, it exists in order to aid traditional legal forms of dispute resolution rather than replace it. It has been proposed that ADR does so in reducing the number of cases to be dealt with by courts; thereby reducing the costs incurred by the public and facilitating greater access to justice . Empirical studies have not conclusively validated these advantages and have alluded to the adverse effects ADR may have on the relationships of parties . It must also be noted that the advantages of ADR are largely contingent upon the parties entering the procedure voluntarily rather than when mandated by courts . Such criticisms have led to suggestions that the advantages of ADR have been overstated. It is the purpose of this paper through an examination and contrast of the advantages of ADR and litigation to suggest that whilst ADR may prove advantageous under some circumstances, it will never replace traditional forms of dispute resolution, rather supplement it.

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