Arbitration is a form of alternative dispute resolution whereby a neutral third party is empowered to decide the outcome of a dispute. It is often a preferred means of resolving conflicts in order to avoid the expense, delay, and acrimony of more formal litigation and trial. Disputes in arbitration can be resolved by a single arbitrator or a panel of three arbitrators (tribunal). When parties submit their dispute to arbitration, they agree to be bound by and comply with the arbitrator’s decision, also called an award. The award is given after each side presents evidence and witnesses and has the same force and effect as a contract in writing between the parties. The award can later be confirmed or vacated by the court based upon a petition by the prevailing or non-prevailing party. Once confirmed, the award is entered as a judgment.
Mr. Coates is amenable to use of the rules and procedures elected by the parties, including AAA Rules, California statutes or as the parties shall have agreed in the arbitration agreement or at the time of arbitrator selection. Regardless of the rules applied, Mr. Coates encourages zealous advocacy with civility and an even playing field for the parties.
What are the advantages of Arbitration?
The parties are encouraged to work together peaceably and often participate in structuring the resolution, which avoids the escalation of anger and hostility often associated with litigation.
- Since arbitration is a less formal and more flexible process, it is typically faster and more cost-efficient than the more cumbersome court process.
- Unlike trials, arbitration proceedings can be scheduled around the needs and availability of the parties (depending on the availability of the arbitrator).
- There are more simplified rules of evidence and procedure. The convoluted rules of evidence do not apply and the right to discovery – often criticized as a delaying and game-playing tactic – is either limited by the parties’ agreement or is at the arbitrator’s discretion (with limited exception for personal injury cases).
- There are limited grounds for judicial review in order to effectuate the parties’ agreement that the award be
- The parties select their arbitrator or panel of arbitrators directly, enabling them to pick someone with the requisite amount of experience and subject matter expertise to render an accurate and appropriate award.
- The arbitration process is private and confidential.