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  • Writer's pictureMartin B DeBellefeuille

The Benefits of Arbitration in Conflict Resolution

Arbitration is a private method of dispute resolution whereby the parties agree to submit their dispute, whether existing or potential, to the decision of one or three arbitrators, without resorting to civil courts.

The arbitral decision is final and binding, subject to possible annulment only for specific legal reasons expressly provided in the Code of Civil Procedure of Quebec. The arbitral decision can be ratified by a court, making it enforceable in the same manner as a civil judgment.

It is possible to proceed directly to arbitration or to resort to it after mediation, when mediation has not resolved the dispute.

Arbitration is a private and consensual process that offers several advantages.

No.1 It's a Fast Process

Arbitration generally proceeds much faster than a civil trial. From the preliminary conference, the parties can agree with the arbitrator on a schedule for the process and set a hearing date in the following weeks, if they wish. They can also agree on the duration and conduct of the process.

In the absence of agreement, the arbitrator decides on these matters while respecting each party's prerogative to present their views and rights. Arbitration allows for a prompt decision based on the law. Since the arbitral award cannot be appealed, it definitively resolves the dispute.

No.2 It's a Cost-Effective Process

In most cases, arbitration allows for the cost-effective management of the dispute. The arbitrator and the parties' attorneys typically act proactively to efficiently shed light on the entire case while respecting the parties' rights. The administration of evidence is simplified compared to proceedings in civil courts.

No.3 It's a Confidential Process

Arbitration is confidential unless one of the parties requests the intervention of a judge, where permitted by the Code of Civil Procedure of Quebec.

No.4 The Expertise of the Arbitrator is Chosen by the Parties

One of the main advantages of arbitration is the ability for the parties, by mutual agreement, to choose the one or three individuals who will render the decision. The arbitrator can be selected based on their expertise in the specific area of the dispute.

For example, architect or engineer arbitrators may intervene in the construction field, while in other disputes, they may be accountants or lawyers specialized in real estate law or labor law. The parties thus have the opportunity to select a decision-maker whose experience and reputation inspire confidence and credibility.

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