Financial disputes are complex, time-consuming and costly to resolve through traditional litigation, but there are alternatives to court action.
The Covid Pandemic was the straw that broke the camel’s back in the civil court system, already beset by delays, working with an archaic system that compounded issues further.
The district courts still trundle along, but because judges have such a backlog of cases to get through, it may take months and years before you ever get to see one in the flesh.
Even if you do, the antiquated court system favours the professionals that you hire to represent you, meaning that even if you prevail after court and legal fees, you may be left with a return of pennies to the dollar.
That is not to mention the stress of taking time off work to appear in court, often for the other party not to turn up.
Filing a lawsuit is simply not worth the time or money for settling financial disputes.
So what are the alternatives to court action?
There are some alternatives to court action, and some are more effective than others.
Online arbitration is the most effective recourse to justice as an alternative to civil court action.
Online arbitration is a form of alternative dispute resolution (ADR), which is recognised by Federal Law and, indeed, mandated for some businesses, such as companies that move goods across state lines.
Brief’s platform is a market leader in online arbitration that is cheaper and faster than the civil courts and other forms of online dispute resolution.
Online arbitration falls under the sub-sector of online dispute resolution.
Let’s look at other options before exploring what Brief offers to help solve financial disputes.
Do nothing and leave debt owed to you on the table
It’s not ideal, but if your business is owed $500 is it really worth the time, money and stress to collect maybe $50, if that?
Probably not. So doing nothing is an option. You can cut your losses and live to fight another day.
That being said, if you use Brief, and include our online arbitratration clause in your contracts, you would have swift and effective access to justice.
We believe that every dispute is worth solving.
Hire a debt collection agency to collect your debt
Again, this is an option, but did you know that debt collection agencies can charge you for making a phone call to the debtor, even if they don’t turn up?
Other agencies may buy the debt from you and collect it under their own steam, but the return is a pittance.
If you use Brief’s online clause builder, you can protect your business by invoking arbitration in the case of a financial dispute.
Arbitration rulings are legally binding.
If you think going to court is time-consuming, wait until you try negotiating with a third party to reclaim debt.
For all the goodwill and promises, you will usually find that they will try and stall and make it as hard as getting blood out of a stone.
It may be worth a shot to reduce your claim and put that as an offer to the debtor, but you are likely to come away empty-handed.
Enter Alternative Dispute Resolution
As mentioned earlier, ADR encompasses a whole range of options to solve disputes.
Again, some are more effective than others; some are more expensive and take longer to complete.
Mediation involves two parties meeting a neutral third-party mediator in an effort to reach a mutually agreed resolution.
The process can take place over the phone, in a virtual setting or in person.
Willingness to participate in good faith
One of the biggest drawbacks of mediation is that it relies on the willingness of both parties to participate in good faith.
If one party to the dispute is not committed to the process, it can be near impossible to make any progress, resulting in more wasted time and money.
Mediator has no powers
In addition, a mediator does not have any executive powers. They can make recommendations, but they cannot force either party to reach a resolution.
Brief’s online arbitration platform is legally binding, and if an award is issued in your favour, it may be reduced to a court judgment if you file it in the district courts.
Time and cost
Another concern is that mediation can be time-consuming, which could lead to greater costs.
Much will depend on the mediator’s availability or the parties to the dispute.
Also, if the process involves a power imbalance, for example, a large corporation and an individual, the outcome of the mediation may not be fair.
The last point of note is that some people may not be entirely comfortable with the informal and less structured nature of mediation.
Mediation can be a highly effective form of ADR for resolving financial disputes, but it’s not without its challenges.
If you’re considering mediation, you should carefully weigh the pros and cons and seek professional advice if needed, to determine whether it’s the best option for your situation.
Traditional face-to-face arbitration
Face-to-face arbitration, like any other method of dispute resolution, has some potential benefits compared to taking court action, but it also has drawbacks.
It is a type of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) where parties in a dispute come together in person to present their case and reach a resolution.
An independent arbitrator acts as a neutral third party and makes a decision that is legally binding on both parties.
Traditional face-to-face arbitration is usually considerably more expensive than other forms of ADR as it involves hiring an independent arbitrator as well as a venue for the hearing.
Face-to-face arbitration can be time-consuming (incurring further costs), and requires parties to travel to a central location for the hearing. This may involve taking time off work or needing to hire work cover.
Face-to-face arbitration can be rigid and formal, making it difficult for parties to express their concerns and reach a mutually agreed upon resolution fully.
Because both parties are physically present in face-to-face arbitration, the impartiality of the arbitrator could come into play.
Implicit bias is a problem in ADR, which is eliminated when using document-centric online arbitration through the Brief platform.
Lack of privacy
Arbitration hearings are open to the public, and proceedings are not confidential, which creates a lack of privacy.
It’s important to weigh the pros and cons of face-to-face arbitration before deciding if it’s the right method of ADR for your dispute.
While face-to-face arbitration can have some negative aspects, it may also have advantages that make it a suitable option for some disputes.
Virtual arbitration is when the arbitration proceedings are conducted entirely or partially through electronic means, such as videoconferencing or teleconferencing.
It has its advantages, such as not needing to be physically present, but there are also some caveats.
Technical issues such as internet connectivity problems, software malfunctions or compatibility, and hardware problems can interrupt or delay the process.
Limited access to evidence
The virtual environment may limit access to evidence or
Lack of familiarity
Some parties and arbitrators may not be familiar with virtual arbitration and its procedures, which can lead to confusion and errors.
Virtual arbitration has its benefits, but it is essential to carefully consider its limitations before choosing it to resolve disputes.
It may only be appropriate for some disputes; in some cases, document-centric arbitration may be a better option.
Document-centric online arbitration with Brief
We’ve saved the best for last. Brief’s online arbitration platform offers a fast, fair, and cost-effective alternative to court action, traditional arbitration and mediation.
The platform allows individuals and businesses to file claims online in an easy six-step process.
Claims are typically resolved in 45 days or less at a fraction of the cost of civil court action.
The online platform provides a simple and convenient way to resolve disputes without the need to attend physically.
Disputing parties asynchronously complete the process, allowing for time and cost efficiencies.
Claims are resolved quickly, typically in 45 days or less, reducing the stress and uncertainty associated with ongoing legal dispute versus the years it might normally take with our offline competitors.
The cost of using Brief is significantly lower than the cost of pursuing a case in the civil courts, making it a more affordable option for individuals and businesses.
Disputes cost 70% less with Brief; even smaller claims that might otherwise be written off are worth pursuing.
Online arbitration is a private process, with proceedings and decisions not available to the public. This can be particularly important for sensitive and confidential disputes.
Brief uses a panel of experts with experience in the relevant area of law to make decisions in disputes.
This ensures that cases are handled by individuals with the necessary knowledge and expertise.
The platform offers a flexible and adaptable approach to dispute resolution, allowing parties to choose the method that works best for them.
Settlement & Recovery
In the interest of collaboration, parties are encouraged to reach a settlement agreement to avoid further enforcement.
Neutral & Unbiased
Independent and unbiased judges are assigned to claims based on jurisdiction and subject matter expertise.
Bar-recognized judges and lawyers decide claims that are court-recognized as legally binding & enforceable.
Overall, Brief offers a practical and efficient solution for individuals and businesses looking to resolve disputes without needing costly and time-consuming court action.
Can your business benefit from Brief’s Online Dispute Resolution platform?
You can shield your business from threats by signing up for our ODR Program. You can also recover debt without going to court.
Brief has helped businesses across the United States recover debts that were not worth the cost of traditional litigation or arbitration if not for online dispute resolution.
Satisfied participants include electronic commerce sites, factors, banks, MCA, and other lenders.
Brief also handles quiet title, warranty claims, declaratory relief actions, and other monetary disputes.
Our screened network of Ejudges spreads across all 50 states, and each case is matched to jurisdiction and subject matter expertise of the Ejudge.
You can request a demo from our homepage or call one of our arbitration consultants today on tel: +12134443794 . Alternatively, drop us an email at [email protected] to book an obligation-free consultation.
Brief is a market-leading online arbitration platform in the United States. Our 100 percent online alternative dispute resolution platform helps businesses protect their contracts and agreements through online arbitration. Follow us on LinkedIn or Facebook for updates and news about online arbitration and more.
*Brief cannot and will not give legal advice on any matters, financial or not.