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alternative dispute resolution

Have you ever heard of “alternative dispute resolution?”

One of the services The Legal Advice Office provides to our clients, and other interested parties; is alternative dispute resolution procedures.

These procedures broadly speaking include interventions, mediation, arbitration and other dispute resolution procedures and methods to settle disputes between two parties without proceeding with a civil court action; which could cost tens of thousands of Rands; take two years to finalise; and, if you lose, you have to pay a portion of the other person’s costs.

Alternative dispute resolution is cheaper, quicker and more efficient.

Here is an example of such a situation; which we dealt with during the course of this last month.

An owner of a property and a builder entered into a building contract last year. A dispute arose and a standoff ensued with the owner refusing to pay the builder any more money; and the builder refusing to return to the building site.

The owner referred the matter to us. The written contract, in the event of a dispute arising; provided for arbitration; and failing that, litigation. Very lengthy costly procedures.

We mediated the dispute by agreement between the parties and met with both the owner and the builder individually and together; and settled the matter between them; with a further agreement between them that the current contract would be cancelled by agreement; and each would go their own way. It took 2 days and cost the owner, our client, R 4000.00.

Is that not a more efficient and cost effective way of dealing with a dispute; than attorneys and litigation costs?

If you are wanting to enforce your legal rights and/or when you have a financial or other dispute with someone; it is always wise to first get proper, professional legal advice before you do anything else. You need to know exactly where you stand.

About our author:

Hugh Pollard (Legal Consultant), has a BA LLB and 41 years’ experience in the legal field. 22 years as a practicing attorney and conveyancer; and 19 years as a Legal Consultant.

082-0932304 (Hugh’s Cell Number)

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Thank you.

The Legal Advice Office Team.


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Legal Advice Office

South Africa

Kandelaar Street, Vermont, Hermanus
Phone: +27 (0) 82 093 2304