Arbitration is a form of alternative dispute resolution that focuses on determining an outcome to a legal dispute without resorting to trial. In many ways it is like a trial, with the two parties presenting evidence, testimony and experts with lawyers present. However, it is generally much faster and may be less expensive, depending on the case.
At our Philadelphia area law firm, we advise clients about the benefits of arbitration. We represent clients during the process; our principal family law attorney, Maribeth Blessing, frequently serves as a court-appointed arbitrator.
How Arbitration Works
In addition to being much faster and possibly less costly than a trial, arbitration has the advantage of being more informal and private. At the conclusion of the process, the arbitrator presents the final decision in the matter to a judge, who enters a binding order that the court system can enforce.
Most arbitrations have the following features:
- Court reporter
- Pre and post-trial memorandums
- Fees shared by the parties
- Final order and any monetary award cannot be appealed
- Discovery and trial usually take place on consecutive days
When is Arbitration Appropriate?
Arbitration may be used to resolve any type of legal dispute. Some of the reasons to choose arbitration include the advantage of having a third party make a final decision; this can be an important feature of the process when a trial or other dispute has become bogged down in legal wrangling. It also may be better in matters that are complicated in terms of the applicable law or the facts of the case. And, of course, it is almost always faster and more private.
Arbitration is frequently used in family law matters such as divorce, custody, support, equitable distribution and special relief issues. It can also be used to resolve disputes such as boundary disputes, employment problems, interfamily disputes and education disputes.
Call a Pennsylvania Arbitrator
Our attorneys can advise and represent clients in arbitration, whichever area of practice is involved. Contact Maribeth Blessing Mediation & Arbitration, LLC, at 215-392-0849. Learn how you can resolve your legal disputes in a less stressful way.