Questions Frequently Asked About Arbitration In Texas
I am James J. Doyle, III. At The DOYLE LAW Firm in Dallas, I provide my clients with clarification about the process of arbitration. I also offer legal services as an arbitrator for select cases. With two decades of experience in arbitration, I have answered many questions about this type of legal proceeding. Here are brief answers to questions frequently asked about arbitration.
Is arbitration the same as mediation?
No. While arbitration and mediation are both forms of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) to resolve conflicts outside of a courtroom, there are significant differences between the two processes.
What is the difference between arbitration and mediation?
One or more arbitrators or arbiters decide the outcome of a dispute subject to arbitration. The arbitrators act as judge and jury who will review all evidence and hear witness testimonials before rendering a decision on the matter or an “arbitration award.” The court of law takes the decision of which side wins, and the damages figure as legally binding and enforceable.
In mediation, a neutral third party or mediator helps the disputing parties reach a settlement agreement. The mediator does not represent or advise the parties involved but rather answers questions to probable outcomes and allows the parties to create their own agreement. The court will render the agreed to settlement as legally binding and enforceable.
What kinds of disputes are settled using arbitration?
Commercial disputes, employment law issues and consumer concerns are often subject to mandatory or consensual arbitration. Some employment contracts or commercial agreements mandate resolving conflicts in arbitration. These contracts may also include waiving your right to bringing a class action claim.
Should I use arbitration to resolve my dispute?
There are some distinct advantages to choosing arbitration over litigation in court. You can choose an arbitrator who has the technical background and expertise related to your legal dispute. It may be faster to arbitrate than to litigate in court. Your proceedings and the outcome are usually not readily available to the public. There are few ways to appeal an arbitral decision, and the award is enforceable.
The arbitration process is adjustable by the arbitrator and parties to fit the needs of the specific case. Generally, an arbitrator performs the same roles as a judge and jury but is usually more accessible and responsive than the typical court system.
Are there disadvantages to using arbitration?
While the arbitral award or decision is binding, a party who wants to enforce the award must take another step with the court to confirm the award, unlike a court judgment, which is directly enforceable.
The parties involved pay for arbitration and pay the arbitrator. In a “mandatory and binding” process, the parties waive their right to have a judge or jury decide their case. The arbitrator may have a bias in favor of a corporation. Appeals are limited, so an incorrect decision may stand.
Do I have to have a lawyer at my side in arbitration?
Generally no, but having an experienced lawyer represent you, especially in complicated matters that involve significant amounts of money, can ensure essential legal aspects are not overlooked.
Who pays for arbitration?
The parties pay for the arbitrator’s services. The fees will vary, depending on the arbitrator.
Who can be an arbitrator?
The parties can choose anyone they want to be an arbitrator. Typically, it is preferred to choose someone with experience in arbitration or civil litigation and who has experience with the type of claim to be resolved.
Can you act as our arbitrator?
I can for the right case. If you want to use me, just call 214-522-6202.