Alternative dispute resolution (“ADR”) is used to resolve disputes informally and confidentially without the matter being dealt with by the courts.
Adjudication is the ADR method that we provide. Adjudication is a cost effective, speedier and a less formal alternative to resolving your dispute through the courts. It is conducted privately based upon written documentation and evidence. An adjudicator who is sufficiently trained weighs up the evidence submitted on balance and reaches a written decision. The adjudicator will apply relevant laws and regulations, as appropriate.
If you accept the adjudicator’s decision within the requisite timeframe, it will become binding upon the company. The company subsequently has 28 days to fulfil the directions set by the adjudicator. If you reject the decision, the Final Determination has no effect on you or the company.
To ensure that our principles of independence and impartiality are upheld, the adjudicator has no direct contact with either party to the dispute. However, if you require reasonable adjustments to submit your claim, you may contact our Administration Team by telephone.
No, the whole arbitration process is conducted in writing.
No, there is no obligation to have legal representation, but you may ask one to submit your claim for you if you want to. Please be advised that you will be unbale to claim for any charges you may be charged for a solicitor’s service.
The ADR service is free to use.
You can submit a claim to ADR if:
- The dispute is with a company that is a member of the Scheme;
- Your claim falls within scope of our Scheme Rules; and
- You have raised your complaint directly with the company in writing and either i) received a final written response (known as a ‘deadlock letter’) or ii) afforded the company eight weeks to respond to your dispute.
The Award will be produced within 90 days of us receiving a Complete Complaint File.
The Final Determination will have no effect in law if you choose not to accept it. We respectfully request that you inform us of your decision so that we can tell the company. If you reject the decision, you remain free to seek alternative redress by taking your claim to court.
You and the company remain free to settle the dispute independently outside of ADR at any time before the Final Determination is published by the adjudicator. If you opt to do this, our ADR scheme is unable to be involved in any negotiations. If a settlement is agreed, you must contact us immediately, in writing, to cease the ADR process. We will subsequently contact both parties to confirm that we will be closing the case as settled.
If the company does not follow the adjudicator’s directions within the requisite timeframe, you should contact us so we can make further enquiries with the company. However, in the event the Final Determination remains unsatisfied, you will have to submit to the courts for enforcement. We are unable to provide any guidance or advice about this process.