Binding family law arbitration is an expedited alternative dispute resolution process that can be an advantageous way to resolve family law matters. In binding family law arbitration an arbitrator, who is a private attorney, will issue a determination on the issues that they have been contracted to resolve examples include equitable distribution, support and personal property. The participants in the binding arbitration do pay the arbitrator to resolve their matter, but receive many benefits.
The benefits to binding arbitration include (1) reduced time for resolution (2) reduced transaction cost (3) privacy and (4) finality. Cases that proceed to binding arbitration often take considerably less time to resolve than cases that proceed through the Court system. In binding arbitration, the arbitrator schedules meetings around the participants schedules. The arbitrator’s report is generally issued within thirty days of the arbitration, which means that the matter can be concluded in a matter of months, rather than a matter of years. The transactions costs of binding arbitration are generally less because many pre-arbitration issues can be resolved through a scheduled telephone conference, rather than a series of court appearances. Binding arbitration is a private process. Therefore, the participant’s confidential information is not filed with the Court and none of their testimony becomes part of a public record. This can especially be advantageous to business owners who do not want to make their business records public. Finally, binding arbitration can only be appealed in very limited circumstances where there is a clear mistake on the part of the arbitrator, whereas cases that proceed through the Court system have numerous opportunities for appeal.
Once the decision has been made to enter into binding arbitration the parties sign an arbitration agreement with their selected arbitrator that sets forth the scope of the arbitration, any agreements that the parties have entering into the arbitration, the arbitrator’s fee, and the procedure for the arbitration. Once the agreement has been signed, the arbitrator will generally schedule a pre-arbitration conference where they will deal with discovery and other pre-arbitration issues. Next, the participants will complete arbitration statements that will include all of their evidence for the arbitration, then the arbitration will be held, and the arbitrator’s findings of fact and written award will be issued, which concludes the arbitration.
Binding arbitration is one of the many alternative dispute resolution processes that the attorneys at Vetrano | Vetrano & Feinman LLC are experienced in using to resolve their cases. Kate Vetrano, Esquire, a founding partner of Vetrano | Vetrano & Feinman LLC, is certified by the American Academy of Matrimonial Attorneys as a binding arbitrator and conducts family law arbitrations in King of Prussia and surrounding areas.
Our experienced family lawyers take the time to fully understand the financial and emotional complexities that can be involved in separating two lives. We offer the patience and resources to effectively guide clients through a divorce, addressing all the challenges they may face in moving forward with their lives. To learn more about how we can help protect your rights and interests in a complex divorce, contact the Pennsylvania divorce attorneys at Vetrano | Vetrano & Feinman LLC.