Alternative Dispute Resolution

Real Estate Disputes and Alternative Dispute Resolution in Connecticut

When a real estate-related legal dispute arises, the parties involved naturally consider how their case would turn out in litigation when working to identify the best course of action.  Civil trials are inherently risky, costly, time consuming and inherently not private:

  • Risky: Parties in trial are dependent on attorneys’ ability to quickly educate judges and jury members who likely have little or no training or education in what can be crucial technical aspects of a dispute. Parties, too, are bound by the court’s decision, no matter how unfavorable it might be.
  • Costly: In courtroom trials, costs for hearings, evidence displays, expert witnesses, court fees and other expenses can quickly add up.
  • Slow: A courtroom trial invariably involves numerous pre-trial hearings and a lengthy wait for a court date, and the opposing side can purposely slow things down using a range of delay tactics. Courtroom trials, therefore, often commence more than year after the case is filed.
  • Lack of privacy: Documents and records produced by a civil trial become part of the public record. Whatever information you choose to or are compelled to provide in court can be viewed by anyone following the trial.

Alternative Dispute Resolution

Fortunately, parties that face a real estate-related legal dispute often have another option for resolving their dispute: alternative dispute resolution (ADR). ADR follows two principal formats:

  • Mediation, which involves a neutral and objective facilitator, who listens, questions and facilitates in order to assist the parties to compromise and achieve a solution.
  • Arbitration, which involves one or more “neutrals” who, like a judge or jury, weighs the evidence presented and issues a binding decision.

Each option places substantial control of costs and timing in the hands of the parties involved. Cost savings are achieved through the efficiency of the ADR process, risk is negotiated up front and privacy is assured because documents related to the case do not become part of the public record.

Jury members and even, judges in civil litigation often have little understanding of crucial technical aspects of a real estate dispute involving wetland use, finance, property co-ownership, easements and construction processes. By choosing ADR over civil litigation, you can obtain legal representation and to select neutrals who have years and even decades of experience handling and deliberating on real estate-related matters.

The most effective way to ensure counsel, mediators and arbitrators are qualified to handle your ADR process in Connecticut is to:

  • Choose individuals with a strong background in real estate law and who are certified in mediation and/or arbitration
  • Work with the Counselors of Real Estate Alternative Dispute Resolution Program

Contact our firm for more information regarding how you can efficiently resolve real estate disputes through ADR in Connecticut.

Counselors of Real Estate

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