Virtual Courthouse.info

 
ArticleSection

  Print This Page

 Add To Favorites

  
Online ADR for Businesses

RAE GROUP ADR NEWSLETTER

Alternative dispute resolution is increasingly becoming the preferred method for resolving problems, primarily due to the efficiency, cost effectiveness and relationship-saving that results from the process. As businesses become more global in scope, face-to-face mediation or arbitration poses considerable logistical problems as parties are often separated by thousands of miles, often in different countries.
As an example, a US Company may have contracted to build a bridge in India using a local company to do the demolition work. Invariably the contract between the two companies will provide for some sort of alternative dispute resolution, stipulating the home state of the US prime contractor as the venue. In order to comply with the contract, the Indian sub-contractor will face severe financial and logistical hardships in the form of airfare, lodging and time away from the business. The US Company may even have drafted that provision with the thought that the subcontractor, with little negotiating leverage, and facing these obstacles, will be more inclined to enter into a settlement favorable to the US Company. If the two companies have relatively equal negotiating power, this will likely result in the choice of a neutral venue for ADR, with the result that both parties expend considerable resources in airfare, lodging and time away from business. With this disincentive to engage in ADR, each party may file suit in its local jurisdiction hoping to force the other to its venue, the very result the ADR clause was designed to avoid.
In situations such as the above example, on-line dispute resolution (ODR) is the ideal solution. With ODR, the logistical obstacles evaporate. Each party and their selected neutral remain in their home locations and may attend to their business when not directly engaged in ODR. Airfare and lodging costs are avoided as well.
How Does ODR Work?
ODR uses to advantage technology already deployed by most businesses: computers, internet, email, instant chat and telephone conferencing. For example, documents and communications may be sent by email and conferences could be held telephonically or in private chat rooms. In addition, techniques such as video conferencing and VoIP could also be used if desired. There are even means of “signing” documents online. Using these tools ensures that the process has the high level of confidentiality and privacy that parties expect from ADR. When considered in this way, ODR is an improvement over traditional ADR in the sense that traditional ADR will frequently supplement face-to-face interaction with email and telephone conferencing.
What Disputes Are Suitable for ODR?

Although Online ADR is well suited for business disputes where the parties are geographically removed from one another, it also works well with almost any type of dispute for which ADR is suitable. Arguably ODR has another advantage over traditional face-to-face ADR in that with ODR parties are spared the sight of certain body language and facial expressions that can be counter-productive to resolving the dispute. With these visual distractions removed, the parties can focus on the substance of their problem.


The author, Jay Lazrus, is an experienced attorney and neutral. For more information, or to retain his services as a mediator or arbitrator, please visit his website at www.raegroup. com or go to www.virtualcourthouse.com and select him as your neutral.
To unsubscribe to this newsletter please send an email to jlazrus@raegroup.com with Unsubscribe in the subject line.


Alternative dispute resolution is increasingly becoming the preferred method for resolving problems, primarily due to the efficiency, cost effectiveness and relationship-saving that results from the process. As businesses become more global in scope, face-to-face mediation or arbitration poses considerable logistical problems as parties are often separated by thousands of miles, often in different countries.

by Jay Lazrus -

Back to Top

###


Alternative dispute resolution is increasingly becoming the preferred method for resolving problems, primarily due to the efficiency, cost effectiveness and relationship-saving that results from the process. As businesses become more global in scope, face-to-face mediation or arbitration poses considerable logistical problems as parties are often separated by thousands of miles, often in different countries.

Source: http://www.raegroup.com

 [ADSENSE_0000000039]