Alternative Dispute Resolution

Elizabeth is an accredited Civil and Commercial Mediator (ADR Group).

Legal disputes are increasingly being dealt with by way of Alternative Dispute Resolution. This includes:

Mediation

In property disputes this will be civil mediation. This has the advantage that a client need not see the person with whom they are in dispute, if they do not wish to do so. The mediator facilitates the negotiations and often a resolution is reached. Elizabeth has represented and assisted clients in many civil mediations. She is a qualified mediator.

An alternative and more cost effective option may be to organise a “round table meeting” (sometimes described as a “Joint Settlement Meeting”) at which the parties are represented but there is no mediator. This can also often result in an acceptable outcome for the parties.

Early Neutral Evaluation (ENE)

An expert opinion is provided to the parties as to the merits of their respective cases with the evaluator instructed by both parties effectively as a joint expert. It can be very helpful where the one is primarily a legal issue, for example, whether a party is likely to succeed in establishing that they have a beneficial interest in property. Elizabeth is happy to provide an opinion on this basis either in writing or in conference.

Private Financial Dispute Resolution / Chancery Financial Dispute Resolution (FDR)

Private FDRs are an increasingly popular way of parties resolving their disputes, particular given the pressures on court resources due to the Covid-19 crisis. The court process will usually include a FDR or Chancery FDR in non-matrimonial cases, at which a non-binding opinion is provided by a Judge with a view to assisting the parties to reach an agreement. A private FDR is effectively the same thing except that the parties are able to select their own expert evaluator to conduct the FDR.

Elizabeth is happy to accept instructions to act as an evaluator in private FDRs (including Chancery FDRs) and also to represent parties at private FDRs. She can be instructed through 1GC Family Law or Parklane Plowden Chambers. Facilities are provided for private FDRs to take place in Chambers. Alternatively they can be conducted remotely using conferencing platforms such as Zoom and Skype for Business.

Arbitration

The parties choose their arbitrator and agree to be bound by his or her award. Elizabeth accepts instructions to represent parties at arbitration.


All forms of ADR have the advantage that the parties are able to choose their own mediator, evaluator or arbitrator and arrange for it to take place in an appropriate venue.