Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)
We provides services for Mediation which is an ADR mechanism that may be used for settling disputes informally and promptly with the assistance of a neutral third-party mediator.
“Lawyer-supported mediation” is a term given to a new dispute resolution process offered to parties to settled their matters with regards all issues which includes Divorce, Child custody, Civil disputes , Rent & Property disputes and Dishonour Cheques.
The approach sets out to integrate the contribution of family lawyer or solicitor with that of a family mediator. Users of lawyer-supported mediation first meet their respective lawyers to take advice before jointly attending mediation sessions. Legal advice is taken between sessions to inform options being discussed at mediation. Following mediation, the lawyers are called upon to review any agreement reached and to make aspects of it made legally binding. Since neither lawyer is initially being retained as a negotiator or litigator, the cost of legal advice is typically fixed for clients choosing lawyer-supported mediation.
In the event of lawyer-supported mediation failing to deliver a partial or full agreement, both parties are free to retain their respective lawyers to pursue litigation. This is not the case with collaborative law where a breakdown in roundtable negotiations requires each party to instruct a new family lawyer before proceeding with court action.
Often disputes arise out of a misunderstanding concerning the expectations and responsibilities of the parties. These disputes may be settled agreeably once a dialogue is established. Mediator does not act as a judge of decision maker, but as a neutral individual whose purpose is to facilitate settlement between the parties.
The term “alternative dispute resolution” or “ADR” is often used to describe a wide variety of dispute resolution mechanisms that are alternative to full-scale court processes. The term can refer to everything from facilitated settlement negotiations in which disputants are encouraged to negotiate directly with each other prior to some other legal process, to arbitration systems or mini-trials that look and feel very much like a courtroom process. Processes designed to manage community tension or facilitate community development issues can also be included within the rubric of community based ADR.
ADR systems may be generally categorized as negotiation, conciliation/mediation, or arbitration systems. Negotiation systems create a structure to encourage and facilitate direct negotiation between parties to a dispute, without the intervention of a third party. Mediation and conciliation systems are very similar in that they interject a third party between the disputants, either to mediate a specific dispute or to reconcile their relationship. Mediators and conciliators may simply facilitate communication, or may help direct and structure a settlement, but they do not have the authority to decide or rule on a settlement. Arbitration systems authorize a third party to decide how a dispute should be resolved.
Two kinds of ADR have been practiced in Pakistan; traditional ADR and public bodies based ADR. The formal refers to the traditional, centuries old system (which was good for simple cases but when it came to status quo issues, would readily succumb to elite capture) including Panchayat (in Punjab) and Jirga (in NWFP and Balochistan). The later includes the ADR attached to public bodies and included Arbitration Councils, Union Councils and Conciliation Courts. Arbitration Councils were confined to issues of divorce, permission for second marriage, and maintenance for existing wives. Union Councils provided the arbitration forum (through elected councilors) under Muslim Family law Ordinance 1961 and looked after a few selected family related issues. Conciliation courts were established under Conciliation Courts Ordinance 1961 and were vested with limited civil/criminal/pecuniary jurisdiction. Majority of the above initiatives were rendered ineffective as the local councils (which had an important role in these forms of ADR) were dissolved frequently and no clear strategies for capacity building of the members of these bodies were ever formulated.