November 25th 2019

What is ADR?

A recent article in the Law Gazette by Tony Guise title ‘ADR – The Time Has Come’ discusses how ADR will become a central component within civil litigation in England and Wales.

Quoting directly from the article, ‘ADR, which was for so long the Cinderella of civil litigation and to which so much lip service has been paid for so long, is about to be established as the central feature of all civil litigation in England and Wales – if recent, Pan-like, initiatives by government and judiciary are to be believed.’

But what is ADR? Our latest blog explores just what Alternative Dispute Resolution is and how it could be beneficial for both consumers and practitioners.

What is ADR?

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) is a method of settling disputes through mediation. It allows the re-establishment of communication and dialogue between the parties involved and through ADR it is possible to avoid costly litigation or going to court by resolving issues.

How Does ADR Work?

ADR provides a confidential, impartial and alternative method of resolving disputes which avoids going to court. The most common types of ADR are conciliation and mediation, arbitration and adjudication.

Conciliation and mediation
Conciliation and mediation involves an independent mediator, like the OCCS, to facilitate communication between the two parties with the aim of achieving a settlement or resolution that is beneficial to all involved. In general, mediation refers to the facilitation of communication, whereas conciliation refers to any evaluative methods such as the making of recommendations as to an outcome.

When Should ADR be Considered?

ADR is typically cheaper and faster than entering into litigation and resorting to the courts. It is also helpful in terms of maintaining a degree of privacy compared to the more public nature of court proceedings. Arbitration is an increasingly attractive option for businesses as it enables any matters to be kept confidential which preserves the reputation of the individuals or businesses involved.

ADR is beneficial for both practices and clients as it allows both parties to re-engage with each other, with our support, to work towards and mutually beneficial outcome for both client and practice. What’s more, unlike litigation, mediation allows practices to learn from what happened, to create processes and procedures and to, ultimately, improve as a practice and avoid similar issues.

For more information on the OCCS and our services, contact our team via 0344 800 5071 or

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