Implementing the Use of ADR to Resolve Employment Disputes in Chicago IL – by Brian James

Alternative dispute resolution is the term used to describe alternative methods of resolving certain disputes besides litigation.  Many employment disputes in Chicago Illinois are resolved using ADR techniques like mediation or arbitration.  Due to the many benefits that ADR strategies have in resolving employment disputes in Chicago Illinois, many employers are implementing ADR programs in-house.

ADR is a non-adversarial process in which a neutral third party helps the parties settle their dispute.  Common forms of ADR include mediation and arbitration.  These methods provide enormous benefits to party participants, one of which is the ability to resolve an employment dispute much more efficiently than litigation.  Since the parties do not have to wait for a court date, they can meet much sooner..  This can be critical in an employment dispute involving an employee who has retained his or her position.

ADR forms are often much less formal than court proceedings.  There are no specific filing requirements, procedural rules or rules of evidence that have to be followed like there are in litigation.  This can help the parties be more balanced, especially if the employee is not represented by an attorney while the employer is represented.  ADR encourages a consensus between the parties and positive communication, paramount considerations if the parties expect to maintain a relationship after the process.

ADR may provide different results from litigation, including an explanation of events, continued employment or a formal apology.  In some situations, the employment relationship may be severed but the employee may be able to receive a severance package or recommendation to future employers.  These types of solutions often better serve the parties’ interests than the traditional remedies provided by a court of law.

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