Family Lawyer: Alternative Dispute Resolution
Litigation or a trial is just one way of ending a marriage in New Jersey. For many couples, the idea of coming up with their own solutions represents the least tedious means to an end.
The New Jersey courts strongly encourage Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) as a divorce tool. For one thing, ADR provides the couple with a chance to negotiate their issues – rather than leaving the odds to judge.
At the same time, conflict still prevails in many alternative dispute resolution forums. However, an arbitrator, mediator or respective counsel have some ability to intervene and control combative battles. An acceptance of attempting ADR does not meanforegoing trial.
Mediation is suitable for couples who recognize their differences and want to have some control over the dissolution of their marriage. When a couple opts to end their marriage through mediation, our office works with them to help them draft their own divorce agreement. A mediator oversees the process. The Court may also order the parties to Economic Mediation of ESP does not result in a resolution of their issues.
Early Settlement Panel (ESP)
At a scheduled phase in the litigation process, the Courts will direct the parties to appear in Court with counsel to meet with a panel of volunteer attorneys, experienced in family law to help guide the parties to a resolution. The Court system established this procedure to encourage and assist the parties to resolve their matter long in advance of judicial intervention
Instead of appearing before a judge, some New Jersey couples present their divorce matter to a skilled arbitrator. The arbitrator evaluates the facts and makes a ruling based on his/her review of the proposed documentation. The case may be presented for judicial review if the arbitrator’s decision is not found acceptable.
Collaborative Divorce is considered a non-adversarial process as the parties have agreed to work together and not pursue litigation. This type of divorce requires the parties and their lawyers to meet together to discuss the issues with the goal of finding their own solutions to the dissolution of marriage.
Couples who are divorcing may not recognize that there are so many options available for their consideration. None of these are decisions that should be taken lightly.