Family Law Arbitration Attorneys Chatham NJ
Serving Clients across Morris County and Northern New Jersey
When going through the divorce process or any other family law dispute, it is important to understand that there are alternatives to courtroom-based resolutions. Alternative Dispute Resolution methods such as mediation, collaboration, and arbitration can all be viable and effective ways of resolving any family law issue and have several distinct benefits over more traditional litigation methods.
Each of these ADR methods has their own advantages, disadvantages, and processes. We have already discussed mediation and collaboration at length, and you can view any of our related pages for more information on these divorce alternatives. The focus of this page will be on the arbitration process, how it works, what makes it different from other ADR methods, and how arbitration can help you resolve your divorce or other family law matter.
Of course, any time you are resolving the life-changing and complex issues that come with any divorce, it is highly recommended that you work with an experienced and knowledgeable family law attorney in order to better understand your rights and options, and protect you and your family’s legal and financial futures.
At Townsend, Tomaio & Newmark, our attorneys have extensive experience acting as divorce arbitrators as well as independent legal counsel during the arbitration process for clients across Morris County and Northern New Jersey. Our firm is dedicated to providing highly attentive and effective family law counsel in all manner of situations, including arbitration, mediation, collaboration, negotiation, and litigation.
Call our firm today at (973) 840-8970 to discuss your individual needs and concerns when it comes to your divorce or other family law matter, whether or not arbitration may work for you, and how exactly we can help you to resolve everything from child custody, child support, the division of assets, alimony, or any other family law matter in a free and confidential consultation with a member of our legal team.
How Does Arbitration Work?
Like any Alternative Dispute Resolution Method, arbitration takes place outside of the public court system, meaning it is much more private and often less time-consuming than a traditional court matter. However, it is the most similar of the ADR methods to courtroom resolutions in that in arbitration, a neutral third-party “arbitrator” is chosen to act as a judge, and issue a final ruling on whatever matter is being decided.
This appeals to many over mediation and collaboration in situations where individuals feel they cannot reach fair resolutions on their own through communication and compromise and want someone to make a decision for them, while still taking advantage of the many benefits ADR has to offer.
In addition, just as with mediation and divorce collaboration, participating parties can choose to retain independent legal counsel in order to represent their rights and interests to the judge arbitrator, or proceed with the arbitration process without legal representation.
Our Morris County family law firm has the knowledge, certifications, and experience necessary to acting as a judge arbitrator in your family law dispute, or providing you with individual legal counsel during the arbitration process.
Binding vs. Non-Binding Arbitration
With all that being said, it is important to understand that there are two distinct types of arbitration in New Jersey: binding arbitration and non-binding arbitration.
In Binding arbitration, any decisions reached by the judge arbitrator are enforceable and legally binding. Divorce settlements or other awards may be modified at a later time based on a change in circumstance, but binding arbitration decisions cannot be immediately appealed by either party for the sole reason that the decisions are not satisfactory. In order to change the outcome of a binding arbitration, a family law appeal must be filed, and the plaintiff must prove that circumstances have changed or the proceedings were somehow unfair or illegal. Binding arbitration is a great option for clients who wish to resolve their disputes as quickly as is responsibly possible.
In non-binding arbitration, as the name suggests, either party is free to disagree with the decisions reached and take their matter to the family court system to be settled there. However, since arbitrators are typically retired judges or experienced family law attorneys, the results of arbitration are generally in line with what can be expected in family court.
Arbitration vs Mediation vs Litigation
As previously mentioned, arbitration offers certain unique benefits over traditional courtroom resolutions as well as mediation. In particular, arbitration is often chosen over these other methods due to its:
- Low relative cost – arbitration often has a lower cost due to the limited time required from legal counsel and by the arbitrator. Particularly with binding arbitration, this is almost certainly the most inexpensive option for achieving a family law resolution which is fair and accurate.
- Fast and efficient conflict resolution – even with mediation and other alternative methods of conflict resolution, it is possible for the negotiation process to last several months, and be spread out over the course of many meetings. Not so with arbitration, which seeks to streamline the process and offer a fair settlement without the emotional back and forth between two distressed parties
- Keeping your information and all proceedings confidential – any decision reached in court, and all related information about the case, is public information and can be viewed by anyone. By settling your family disputes via arbitration, mediation, or collaboration, your personal information, and details of your case will remain private and confidential
- Offers final solutions to disputes which cannot otherwise be resolved between spouses – often times the main appeal of arbitration is the finality of the process. Sometimes even well-meaning spouses simply cannot come to an amicable resolution to their disputes on their own. Arbitration efficiently and effectively solves this problem
As you can see, arbitration offers a number of distinct advantages over courtroom based resolutions as well as mediation. If you and your spouse feel you are willing to work together and want to reach your own resolutions to whatever family law matter you are facing, then mediation is probably a much better option for you. However, if you wish to avoid months of negotiations and discussions, but still want to take advantage of the benefits ADR has to offer, then arbitration is a much more viable method of conflict resolution in such a scenario.
Contact our Arbitration Lawyers Today
At The Law Office of Townsend, Tomaio, & Newmark, we have over 75 years of combined experience serving clients in New Jersey.
By practicing exclusively family law, our firm is able to focus on providing the most effective possible legal counsel when it comes to the issues most important to you and your family. We believe that only through honest and regular communication with our clients can we achieve the types of results that best meet their unique needs, concerns, and situation in whatever family law matter they are facing.
To speak with a member of our family law team in a free and confidential consultation regarding your divorce, your options for securing resolutions through mediation, arbitration, or collaboration, and how exactly we can help you in any family law matter, please contact us online, or through our Morris County office today at (973) 840-8970.