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Alternative dispute resolution

The outcome is in your hands.

Litigation isn’t the only way to resolve a dispute.  And it’s definitely not the cheapest or quickest method. So it’s best to consider less formal options before taking a dispute to court. 

Alternative Disputes Resolution methods (or ADR for short) offer parties the chance to determine the outcome of their dispute for themselves. Methods vary (and we can advise on the best way to go), but with the exception of arbitration, they involve getting everyone to sit down, talk out the issues and (try to) resolve them with a bit of help.

  • Mediation: parties get together to discuss their grievances and attempt to settle them with the assistance of a third party (the mediator)
  • Negotiated settlements: very similar to mediation except that a mediator is not used, but lawyers might be
  • Judicial settlement conference: an initiative by the Courts to facilitate discussion between litigants. They aim to reduce the number of cases which ultimately go to trial, while still giving people access to the justice system
  • Arbitration: the Judge is replaced by an expert arbitrator selected by the parties.
“Conflict is inevitable, but combat is optional.” - Max Lucade

Key people

Helping to resolve a dispute without going to court – we call that a victory.

Ben Cain, Hamilton, Tauranga

Senior Associate

Clients we have helped

What people say
"Following long negotiation we accepted JAWS advice that a Judicial Settlement Conference may provide finality to our dispute with a competitor. The team at JAWS steered us through the process at a speed and level we could understand. "
Maurice O'Reilly, CEO/Director - Showerdome
"Ben Cain from James & Wells is a litigator who "cuts straight to the chase." Focusing on getting down to the legal principles purely and efficiently, Ben interprets information quickly, then advises with clarity and detail in a way that is easy to understand and absorb."
Nick Franklin and Chrissy Rogerson - Diamond Aquaculture (2008) Ltd
"Intellectual property disputes and the attendant litigation are seldom easy or pleasant experiences. My Company’s experience with James and Wells was exemplary and we are best pleased with the results they achieved on our behalf."
Dave Kenyon, Director - Rotating Machinery Limited
"It’s not often you will find a lawyer who talks you out of taking legal action and works with you to find better first-step approaches. We have always been impressed with the service from James & Wells but Ben well exceeded any service expectations we had! "
Michelle Beavan, Director - Exess Connectivity Ltd