Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) is the general term for a number of different approaches to resolving issues without the need for a hearing in court. In the case of Family Law, this can include matters such as divorce settlements and child custody cases.
Throughout England and Wales, and across the rest of the European Union, ADR methods are becoming a more popular way to resolve Family Law issues, with more and more solicitors trained in these new techniques and processes, and practices like our Family Law Solicitors Leeds office encouraging their clients to consider these alternatives to the traditional approach.
As well as the obvious benefit of avoiding what could end up being an emotionally draining court hearing, there are a number of other advantages to Alternative Dispute Resolution:
- Lower costs: Depending on the particular issue, and the method of ADR chosen, you could find that this approach helps to reduce costs and fees and is generally a much less expensive way of dealing with your Family Law problems
- Less time: Because ADR requires both parties to commit to reaching a settlement without the need for a lengthy and drawn out court process, this alternative approach is usually a much quicker way of resolving these issues
- More civil: Working with specially trained solicitors and other Family Law professionals to avoid the adversarial environment of a court room, provides a much more civil approach to achieving the best outcome for both parties
Types of Alternative Dispute Resolution
There are a number of different ways ADR can help to resolve Family Law issues, and the two most common processes are:
Mediation – A trained mediator works with both parties to try and help them reach a satisfactory agreement without the need for a court hearing. Click the link to find out more about Mediation.
Collaborative Family Law – Specially trained Family Law solicitors represent each party, who make a commitment to resolve their issue without going to court. Through a series of face to face meetings the parties aim to reach a suitable agreement. Follow the link to find out more about Collaborative Family Law.
More and more clients are choosing methods of Alternative Dispute Resolution to settle Family Law issues. In fact, since the beginning of April 2011, individuals will not (except in special circumstances) be able to make an application to family court unless they can show they have explored the potential for mediation to help them solve their problem.
If you’re dealing with a Family Law problem, we have a number of specially trained professionals in our Family Law Solicitors Leeds office who will be more than happy to discuss how mediation or the collaborative process might help.