Commercial Arbitration Lawyers in NJ
Settling disputes outside of court is not uncommon in New Jersey. Perhaps the best example of this is the famous duel between Alexander Hamilton and Vice President Aaron Burr on the banks of the Hudson River. Thankfully, dueling has gone out of style, but other types of alternative dispute resolution are only growing in popularity.
New Jersey businesses are increasingly turning to arbitration to resolve disputes between themselves and other businesses, employees, and customers. Arbitration is an alternative to litigation that is somewhat similar to it, except that it is faster, cheaper, and private. Dressel/Malikschmitt regularly drafts agreements incorporating arbitration clauses for our clients who want to avoid litigation. We also represent New Jersey businesses in arbitration proceedings.
What Is Arbitration?
Arbitration is a method of dispute resolution that is more structured than negotiation, but less formal than litigation. It is adversarial, and the end goal is to find the truth and assign blame. Both sides present their case to a neutral third party they have hired to oversee and decide the case. The evidence that is presented is similar to the evidence that you might see in traditional litigation, but the procedural rules are relaxed. The whole process is less formal, giving both sides a chance to tell their story in a more comfortable manner.
The person overseeing the case is called an arbitrator. Their job is to hear the case, then make a decision based on the evidence presented, much like a judge does in traditional litigation. These neutral professionals are often retired judges. However, it is possible for the parties in a dispute over a highly technical matter to hire an arbitrator who has specialized knowledge or experience in a specific industry. For example, in a case about a construction defect, the parties might hire an arbitrator who has worked as a construction engineer rather than a former judge who mostly handled family law cases.
The arbitrator’s decision in the case is binding. If either party disagrees with the ruling, they can file a lawsuit in court. That takes the dispute back to square one. The courts are under no obligation to consider the facts or evidence presented during arbitration.
Why Choose Arbitration?
Arbitration is popular because it is faster and less expensive than going to court, but it is still focused on finding the truth and assigning blame through an adversarial process. Businesses also value the privacy that arbitration can provide.
Arbitration is almost always faster than litigation because it can be done on the parties’ schedule. There is no waiting around for a court date or sitting around in court waiting for your case to be called. Arbitrations are scheduled for mutually agreeable times and conducted at neutral locations.
The pre-arbitration timeline is also much shorter than a typical pre-trial schedule. Differences in the discovery process account for much of this. The parties to an arbitration either contract with one another to set the parameters of discovery or limit their discovery as the arbitrator directors. Limiting the type and breadth of discovery can save the parties a lot of time.
The truncated discovery phase not only speeds resolution, but it also dramatically decreases the cost of the entire dispute resolution process. Additional cost savings are realized because preparing for arbitration is less time consuming than preparing for trial.
The mode and extent of arbitration can be, to a large extent, preordained in a binding arbitration agreement. Additionally, as arbitration unfolds, the parties can stipulate to as to issues, discovery, motions, etc. in ways that could not happen in court. Indeed, although the arbitrator always has the final word, they will not stand in the way if the parties want to get efficient or creative.
Unlike court cases, arbitration proceedings are not open to the public. The results of an arbitration — even the fact that the parties went to arbitration — may remain a secret. Unless the parties agree to share information about the arbitration with the public, or one party is allowed by law to unilaterally reveal what happened behind closed doors, the results of the arbitration remain confidential.
Commercial Arbitration Attorneys In New Jersey
Dressel/Malikschmitt helps businesses in New Jersey and beyond avoid litigation by going to arbitration.
Our team drafts arbitration clauses to include in commercial, employment, and consumer contracts. While we are known for our work on behalf of clients in the crypto, pharma, finance, construction, and energy industries, arbitration agreements can benefit businesses in almost any line of work.
We also guide clients through the arbitration process. From the moment a dispute arises, you can count on our experienced team to advise you of your options and guide you to a resolution.
Contact Dressel/Malikschmitt today to discuss your legal needs. Fill out our contact form or call us at (848) 202-9323.
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