Arbitration requires an independent third party to make a binding decision on your behalf. At a hearing, you present evidence that is relevant to the issue(s). Arbitration provides privacy for the parties and continuity of the proceedings. Any decisions that are made are presented to a judge for the entry of a final order. This order may be enforced by the courts.
Arbitration Awards once filed with the Court have the same legal force as a Court Judgment. Many people prefer this process which involves a mutually agreeable qualified individual determining the issues which otherwise would be dealt with by a Judge.
The advantage of this process in both matters of civil litigation and family law (recently sanctioned by amendments to both the Arbitration Act and the Family Law Act) are amongst others:
- Privacy of the hearing and documentation relevant to the determination of the issues dealt with;
- Speed of the process with the Arbitrator having the power to make interim awards;
- While the hearing is formed, it is often found less intimidating than a process in open court;
- Consistency of approach, in that one person as Arbitrator deals with matters throughout, as opposed to several Judges, some of whom may have different approaches or opinions than others; and