November 17, 2023
A statue of Lady Justice

It is a well-known fact that the Indian judiciary is among the oldest in the world, but it is also getting less effective at handling cases that are still pending since Indian courts are overflowing with lengthy cases that have not been resolved.

According to the experts who teach in the RJS Coaching institute, the problem is not currently being resolved because there are still a large number of ongoing cases, despite the establishment of more than a thousand fast-track tribunals that have already resolved millions of cases.

Alternative Dispute Resolution: About

  • An alternative to going to court is using alternative dispute resolution, or ADR, to resolve a disagreement, conflict, or claim. Rather, an ADR procedure like arbitration or mediation is agreed upon by the parties.
  • ADR is a free option for anyone who wants to avoid going to court in a civil (non-criminal) dispute. ADR might be required or encouraged by the court during litigation in order to facilitate more amicable dispute resolution and lighten the backlog of cases in the court system.

Alternative Dispute Resolution: Major Provisions

  • The Civil Procedure Code, 1908, Section 89, gives the public this opportunity. When the court determines that there are elements of a solution outside of the court, it will create the parameters of the potential settlement and refer the matter to Negotiation, Conciliation, Mediation, Arbitration or Lok Adalat.
  • The Legal Services Authority Act of 1987 as well as the Arbitration and Conciliation Act of 1996 are the important legislations that deal with alternative dispute resolution which is an important subject matter for the judiciary that is often focused by RJS Coaching institutes.

Alternative Dispute Resolution: Types

As discussed by expert teachers in various RJS Coaching institutes, there are five common types of Alternative Dispute Resolution. They are:

  • Perhaps the most basic and uncomplicated kind of alternative dispute resolution is known as negotiation. The opposing parties get together to discuss issues, look at potential solutions, and pinpoint issues. Nobody else assists them in their negotiations as an impartial third party.
  • Although the parties still attempt to resolve the conflict on their own, in mediation a neutral third party known as a mediator listens to both of them, assists them in discussing the issue, and then guides their decision-making. The decision is not under the mediator’s authority. When there is a relationship between family members or business partners, for example, that both sides wish to maintain, mediation is frequently advised.
  • When disagreeing parties agree to have a third party decide the outcome, arbitration is used. An arbitrator is a neutral third party who hears arguments from both parties, weighs the evidence, and renders a verdict. Arbitration comes in two flavors. In legally enforceable arbitration, the arbitrator’s ruling is final. If the parties to nonbinding arbitration disagree with the arbitrator’s ruling, they may seek a trial in court.
  • Although less formal in nature, conciliation is nonetheless a type of arbitration. It is the process of helping the parties to a disagreement reach a peaceful conclusion through the use of a conciliator who meets with each party separately to resolve the conflict. Conciliators meet separately in order to improve communication, reduce tension between the parties, and interpret the situation in order to facilitate a negotiated conclusion. 
  • The Lok Adalat, often known as the “People’s Court,” is chaired by a member of the legal profession, social activists, or a serving or retired judge. In order to exercise this authority, the National Legal Service Authority (NALSA) and other Legal Services Institutions regularly hold Lok Adalats.  Lok Adalat may be consulted over any matter that is still pending in a regular court or any disagreement that hasn’t been presented before a court of law.

Alternative Dispute Resolution: Benefits

The benefits associated with alternative dispute resolution are as follows:

  • Unlike in courts, people settle their disputes quickly.
  • Going through the legal process saves a lot of money.
  • Here, disputes are settled amicably without the formalities of the legal system.
  • Individuals can express themselves without worrying about going to court for their cases. Without revealing the information to any court, they might disclose the real facts.
  • When both partners talk about their problems on the same forum, there is always a potential that the relationship may be repaired.
  • It keeps the parties’ positive relationship intact as well as stops more disagreement.
  • It protects each party’s best interest.

ADR refers to methods of resolving conflicts other than through conventional court proceedings. It provides parties with an adaptable and cooperative way to reach mutually accepted agreements. The goals of ADR are to reduce costs, promote more amicable settlements, and speed up resolutions. Although there are many situations in which it is not necessarily appropriate, it can be applied to a wide range of problems.

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