Additional Alternative Dispute Resolution Processes

The Michigan attorneys at Weisman, Young & Ruemenapp, P.C. are both knowledgeable, creative and trained in the use of alternative dispute resolution ("ADR") methodology as users and providers. In addition to (i) arbitration, (ii) mediation and (iii) case evaluation, other less traditional methods of dispute resolution are also useful.

One such method is mediation/arbitration, which combines mediation and arbitration. The mediation first occurs followed by an arbitration and the mediator may be the same person as the arbitrator. In that case, the ultimate result is generally binding and the process becomes evaluative.

Neutral evaluation is another form of ADR where neutral fact finding or early neutral evaluation is utilized. In this process, a third-party independent technical expert is often retained to give an advisory report after an informal investigation. This is usually done in conjunction with technical issues such as valuation, appraisals and/or construction defects. Another variation of this process is retaining a neutral evaluator who assesses the strengths and weaknesses of each side's position, helps refine the issues and assists in developing the path the case is to proceed.

Mini trials or summary jury trials have also been utilized. In a mini trial, there is normally a three-person panel that listens to a presentation of the proofs in a summary format and provides a decision based upon the presentation. The mini trial and its results help educate the decision makers regarding later settlement negotiations, mediation or other ADR processes. A summary jury trial is usually a six member advisory jury with a judge. This process is nonbinding regarding liability, damages or both, and assists the decision makers with regard to whether or not to proceed, settle or to use other ADR processes.

The Consensual Special Magistrate is another form of ADR. It is, in essence, hiring a private judge. It is similar to an arbitration, except that the decision can be appealed just as any court case can be appealed, while the ability to appeal an arbitration award is very limited.

Each of the ADR processes have advantages and disadvantages. The attorneys at Weisman, Young & Ruemenapp, P.C. use their years of knowledge and experience in such ADR techniques in order to assist our clients in determining which, if any, of the ADR alternatives will help resolve their disputes. We believe that ADR saves money and time, is voluntary, is confidential, maintains betters relationships between the parties, allows for creativity, eliminates the artificial and sometimes intimidating formality of the court, improves communication and trust between the parties and keeps the parties in control of their solution. We have been trained to maximize the benefits of ADR for our client base, as well as to deliver ADR services as a provider in a fair, unbiased and effective manner.

Please contact Weisman, Young & Ruemenapp, P.C. at 248.258.2700 for additional information and to discuss how alternative dispute resolution may assist you in meeting your specific needs and objectives. Whether you are an attorney or judge seeking an independent mediator or arbitrator for an existing case, or are someone seeking counsel to represent you in connection with a mediation, arbitration or other ADR matter, let the attorneys at Weisman, Young & Ruemenapp, P.C. assist you with this process.