PRACTICE AREAS

ALTERNATIVE DISPUTE RESOLUTION (ADR)

ALTERNATIVE DISPUTE RESOLUTION: Filing a lawsuit should be the last resort after you have exhausted all other attempts to resolve a dispute. A dispute can be quickly resolved by meeting with your adversary after perhaps sending a cease and desist letter or a demand letter. The Krongold Law Corp. can assist in preparing for the settlement meeting (strategies and options) and helping to draft any confirming agreement.

The parties can also choose to participate voluntarily in mediation which can be conducted by an experienced attorney or former judge. Mediation is a confidential, cost-effective way to settle the dispute quickly and quietly. Mr. Krongold attended Pepperdine Law School’s Strauss Institute of Dispute Resolution and received a training certificate in “Mediating the Disputed Case.”

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ARBITRATION

Another form of ADR is arbitration. Arbitration is less formal than court trial, takes place in private, and is usually faster than waiting for an open courtroom. Arbitration can be expensive. Various arbitration companies exist, such the American Arbitration Association, Judicate West, and JAMS, which have their own rules and fees. Arbitration may be required by contract or agreement, or may be ordered by the court in certain situations, and can be binding or non-binding. The scope of private arbitration is a matter of agreement between the parties, and the powers of the arbitrator are limited and restricted by the agreement.

Moreover, there is some finality to an arbitration award. Unlike a court judgment, as a general rule, and with narrow exceptions, an arbitrator’s decision cannot be reviewed for errors of fact or law. By voluntarily submitting to arbitration, the parties are deemed to have agreed to bear the risk of error in exchange for a quick, inexpensive, and conclusive resolution to their dispute.

Code of Civil Procedure Section 1286.2 sets forth the grounds for vacation of an arbitrator’s award. It states in pertinent part: “[T]he court shall vacate the award if the court determines that: (a) The award was procured by corruption, fraud or other undue means; (b) There was corruption in any of the arbitrators; (c) The rights of such party were substantially prejudiced by misconduct of a neutral arbitrator; (d) The arbitrators exceeded their powers and the award cannot be corrected without affecting the merits of the decision upon the controversy submitted; or (e) The rights of such party were substantially prejudiced by the refusal of the arbitrators to postpone the hearing upon sufficient cause being shown therefor or by the refusal of the arbitrators to hear evidence material to the controversy or by other conduct of the arbitrators contrary to the provisions of this title.”

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