Despite signing a contract, parties to an agreement may end up in a dispute. Such disagreements are becoming more costly as recent reports show that the cost of construction disputes took a dramatic increase.
Parties can consider their options to understand how to resolve disagreements efficiently.
Mediation can offer a satisfactory resolution to a disagreement if both parties are willing to work together. Mediation involves hiring a neutral third party to oversee the discussions and allow disputants to reach a consensus.
The mediator does not impose a binding solution like a judge does but works at helping each side understand the options and communicate their needs and positions. Mediation can be a good way to preserve peace, privacy and a working relationship.
Pursuing civil litigation
When communication is at an impasse, heading to trial might be the only option remaining. Civil litigation requires presenting the case before a judge, though some types of cases in some areas also use juries.
Bringing a case before the court makes the matter one of public record. If the parties want to keep details confidential, doing so can be challenging in a trial.
Trials can also become contentious and ruin relationships. Also, whoever loses could appeal the decision and prolong the case.
Agreeing to arbitration
Arbitration can be a viable alternative to litigation when parties want a binding decision and privacy. The parties bring in a neutral third party to judge the dispute. The resulting decision is binding and can be confidential. There is usually no method to appeal the decision.
Contract disputes will inevitably occur. With experience and forethought, businesses and individuals can work to prepare better documents that prevent misunderstandings.