Alternative Dispute Resolution

Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) has come to refer broadly to a range of processes (e.g., bilateral negotiation, fact finding, mediation, summary jury trial, arbitration) that are used in transactional (e.g., design contracts, develop regulations), dispute prevention, and dispute resolution contexts. ADR processes operate in public and private settings, such as courts, government agencies, community mediation centers, schools, workplaces, and private providers, to address an array of substantive issues (e.g., custody, torts, contracts, misdemeanors, environmental issues).

This entry focuses on a subset of ADR processes: those that involve a neutral third party and serve as an alternative to court adjudication of civil, divorce, and minor criminal disputes. The processes that are most commonly used are described in the following section.

The goals and asserted benefits of ADR include ...

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