Alternative Dispute Resolution methods have tremendous advantages over traditional litigation. The following describes some of the benefits:

 

 

Typically the processes are much shorter in duration than litigation.

Arbitration and Mediation sessions are private, whereas litigation usually is a matter of public record.

The processes are less formal thereby making them more comfortable for the parties.

Judges and juries are not often versed in the responsibilities and standards in the construction industry. Even after a lengthy and expensive trial, the outcome is often unpredictable.

Usually, ADR methods are substantially less expensive than litigation.

Binding Arbitration decisions are final and can not be "appealed" except for certain conditions. This provides complete closure of the issue and allows each party to carry on with their productive endeavors.

An Arbitration Award may be enforced in court.

ADR methods have a better chance at saving relationships than litigation.

The parties can more easily represent themselves, if desired.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mediation: Mediation is a non-binding process where an independent person assists the parties of a dispute to find their own acceptable settlement. Often, the parties have developed a defensive posture which makes understanding and compromise difficult. Mark Lopez is trained at exploring and presenting solutions to the parties that may be otherwise overlooked.

Arbitration: An Arbitrator is an independent person who is asked to make a decision for a dispute. When the parties can not come to a mediated resolution, the next step is to have an Arbitrator decide the case for them. Similar to a court hearing, each side presents documentary evidence and testimony and may cross examine each other. Mark Lopez is trained and has the experience necessary to gather the facts, understand the issue(s), and make a fair ruling.

Dispute Review Board: A DRB is typically a 3 person group of neutrals who are hired at the initiation of a project to help resolve on-site issues prior to the placement of any formal claims or complaints. A single neutral may be appropriate depending on the size and complexity of the project. Usually the panelists have no binding authority. They issue recommendations which are available for discovery should the case go to litigation or arbitration. Periodic meetings are held to review the progress of the work and to ascertain the potential for disputes. DRB's have a very successful track record of keeping projects on track while greatly limiting the amount of time and money expended placing and defending claims.

 

Insurance Code 2071 Appraiser: After a Fire Damage loss, sometimes the Home Owner and their Insurance company cannot agree on an equitable settlement. Each side hires a "disinterested" Appraiser. They intern select a Neutral Umpire. The two Appraisers review estimates, review the damaged conditions and prepare an Analysis. Should there be an issue which the Appraisers cannot agree on, they work with the Umpire to form a decision.