Reach an agreement with a 4-way meeting
If one of the above alternative dispute resolution examples is not for you, might consider instructing your lawyer to have a 4-way meeting. A 4-way meeting can be a very cost-effective and time-efficient way of agreeing.
This is an adr dispute resolution process whereby you, your lawyer, your ex-spouse, and their lawyer sit down together (either in person or via video conferencing) and work out the terms of an agreement.
You first prepare by exchanging financial and other information. You also walk into this meeting with some initial legal advice. Then you “roll up your sleeves” and try to work out a final and legally binding separation agreement. If the lawyer on the other side is cooperative and has mediation-based training along with a dispute resolution focus, this can be a great way to resolve your matter. Four-way meetings tend to be quicker, better, and cheaper than court.
If the 4-way meeting does not work or is not suitable, there are other forms of dispute resolution you can consider like the ones below.
Regardless of which of the alternative dispute resolution examples you will engage in to see your matter resolved, preparation is key. Don’t forget, as with all other processes, to ensure you get some initial independent legal advice from a lawyer in your jurisdiction before starting this process.
Compared to other alternative dispute resolution examples, mediation is probably the process that results in a final agreement most often. In mediation, you can mediate with or without lawyers present. In our experience, mediation is best when lawyers are present to finalize the deal. The point we make is this, mediation is almost always worth it.
In most cases with mediation, all four people, that is, lawyers and their clients, attend mediation using the services of a trained family law mediator. The trained family dispute resolution practitioner is the 5th person in the room.
The mediator works with everyone to reach a final, binding alternative dispute resolution agreement. The mediator has one job: to get you to an agreement. If you disagree, the mediator is not authorized to decide for you. The lawyers provide you with legal advice and guidance throughout the process.
You can then use that binding agreement as part of the documentation to support your desk order divorce.
Mediation is much less expensive than court and tends to take less time because you do not have to wait for scheduled court time.
The only downside is that if you disagree, you do not have a concluded matter. This means that you are back to the drawing board in some ways, in that you might have to go to court or arbitration to see the matter finalized.
If your mediation fails, do not despair, you do not have to give up. You can return to other forms of dispute resolution perhaps with a lawyer’s assistance.
Reach an agreement with mediation/arbitration (med/arb, for short)
Mediation/arbitration is a lot like mediation except that if you do not settle at the mediation stage, you move to arbitration. You enter into the med/arb agreement before the process starts. This means that if you disagree on final terms, the mediator will take off their mediation hat and put on their “judge” hat and make the decision for you. As with mediation, mediation/arbitration is one of the most effective alternative dispute resolution examples
Alternative dispute resolution arbitration is when you give the med/arbiter the authority to finalize your matter and make a binding decision if you do not enter a final agreement at the mediation stage. Your mediator removes their “neutral” hat and is authorized to make a legally binding decision to finalize matters. Essentially, they will become your private judge.
Like mediation, med/arb is less expensive than court and takes less time to get to a final binding agreement than court. This type of alternative dispute resolution process leaves much of the decision-making up to you and your ex-spouse and gives you a final resolution.
Reach an agreement with collaborative family law
Family matters do not HAVE to be complicated.
If you and your spouse are separating or thinking about separating, you may seek a way to resolve your issues and come to an agreement outside of court.
You may want to consider the collaborative family law process if this is the case.
What is collaborative law?
Collaborative Law is a process that addresses the emotional, financial and legal issues that arise as you transition through the end of a relationship.
The heart of collaborative practice or collaborative divorce is to offer you and your spouse or partner the support, protection, and guidance of your own lawyers but to resolve disputes respectfully and without going to court.