Arbitration Law

Arbitration law is an area of legal practice that's been growing rapidly over the last few years. This is because, more and more, most contracts include binding arbitration clauses that require disputes to be settled in arbitration rather than in court. Arbitration is generally faster, cheaper, and has less stringent rules than a trial. Arbitrations are usually not subject to an appeal.

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Feb 18, 2021

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  • Arbitration is an alternative to resolving disputes at trial.
  • Many contracts contain arbitration clauses that require the parties to use arbitration instead of going to court.
  • Arbitration is often cheaper and faster than trial.
  • Arbitration has limited rights to appeal and may limit the ability of one party to choose the person or persons making the ultimate determination.

Arbitration’s definition is the settling of differences between parties by a person or persons chosen by them. In a legal sense, arbitration is a form of alternative dispute resolution that keeps disagreements out of the courts.

In some instances, people may opt for arbitration because an arbitration or settlement is private while a resolution in court is public record. Much more often, however, arbitration is included in contracts and agreed to by customers or clients as a term of the contract itself.

The fact that arbitration is often a term of a contract means that in many instances this form of dispute resolution doesn’t quite live up to the definition. The consumer or client often signs the contract without any ability to choose the arbitrator or even with the knowledge that they’re agreeing to arbitration.

While there are many differences between arbitration and a trial, one of the factors that remain consistent is that having an experienced attorney on your side will be incredibly helpful. You can find an experienced arbitration attorney near you with our FREE search tool right now.

What is Arbitration?

Arbitration is a dispute resolution method with a number of differences from a trial.

  • As mentioned above, arbitrations are private.
  • Rules for evidence and other trial rules are much looser.
  • There is often no right to an appeal from the determination of an arbitration.
  • The person or persons chosen to rule on arbitration are often chosen by the party who required arbitration and may not always be impartial.
  • Arbitration is often less expensive and faster than a trial.

Most contracts contain an arbitration clause stipulating that disputes between the contracting parties must be resolved in arbitration. Remember, though, that just because it’s not a trial doesn’t mean you can’t have the assistance of an attorney.

Consulting with a transactional or contract attorney will help with preparing for and completing your arbitration — after all, almost all contracts today have arbitration clauses, so a contracts attorney will be invaluable.

You can use our FREE search tool to find a contracts, arbitration, or any other kind of attorney you need right now.

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