Skilled Albuquerque, New Mexico Alternative Dispute Resolution Attorney
Proven methods save time, stress and expense
Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) refers to a number of methods used to settle controversies outside the civil court system. These include non-binding arbitration, binding arbitration and mediation. When you choose the ADR route, it’s important to remember you are still involved in an adversarial process. Moreover, if you agree to binding arbitration, you are giving up any and all rights to appeal the decision. Susan G. Chappell Law Firm represents clients in ADR proceedings to arrive at truly just settlements.
What’s the difference between arbitration and mediation?
Mediation can be seen as the first step in a two-step process. During mediation, parties may argue over the interpretation of a clause in a contract or a fair award for damaged property. The mediator will work with them to forge an agreement. He will not impose a result, but rather help them achieve it. If the parties can’t agree, the dispute might move to arbitration, where a neutral arbitrator will listen to the facts of a case and render a decision. In non-binding arbitration, the parties can reject the decision then move on to binding arbitration or trial. In binding arbitration, parties agree to abide by whatever the arbitrator decides and there is no appeal.
Each stage of this process requires preparation, execution and high-level decision making, weighing costs and benefits, and anticipating consequences. As an experienced attorney, I approach arbitration as I would a trial: meticulously preparing your case, researching relevant law and weaving material facts into a compelling narrative asserting your cause.
Arbitration is designed to reach a fair outcome without the expense and time of a trial. When it is voluntary, arbitration helps many people who might otherwise be shut out of the justice system by high costs. However, arbitration is still an adversarial process, with each side presenting their case and rebutting their opponent’s. This is especially true if your opponent is a corporation with a mandatory arbitration clause in its contract and a staff of lawyers on retainer who specialize in denying claims like yours. Now you’re arbitrating because you must. You need an experienced attorney to deliver the professionalism it takes to match a strong opponent.
If the arbitrator is neutral, why do I need a lawyer?
A trial judge would also be neutral, but you probably would not venture to represent yourself in court. I know how to approach arbitration proceedings to display your case in the best light, and my knowledge is power for you to assure an outcome based upon the merits of your case.
Contact a determined New Mexico ADR law firm.
Don’t delay if you feel your dispute could benefit from the fast track of alternative dispute resolution. Reach out to Susan G. Chappell Law Firm to schedule a consultation at my Albuquerque office. Call 505-717-1978 or contact me online today.