Mediation & Arbitration ARBITRATION & MEDIATION More and more often, parties are looking to find alternative ways in which to resolve their disputes. Litigation can be an expensive, lengthy process, and there are more options now than ever before to resolve differences without resorting to a courtroom. Arbitration Are you looking for an alternative to the Court process during the Alberta Courts closure? In Arbitration, the Arbitrator becomes the decision maker for the parties. The parties can tailor the process to their own needs and timelines and do not have to follow the strict rules of the court. It can be done in a relatively informal way, or can be done in a formal fashion, including the use of court reporters and sworn evidence if necessary. It is customized to the individual needs of the parties. The same process can be completed in a fraction of the time through Arbitration. An Award granted through Arbitration is binding on the parties, in accordance with section 36 of the Arbitration Act. 1. Chambers/Docket Court Matters in Arbitration Mountain Vista Law is happy to engage in a one-hour Arbitration session for chambers/docket matters based on Affidavit evidence. This option is suitable for interim awards and is offered at a discounted flat rate of $1,000 for any matter which is booked while the court closure is in effect. Evidence will be provided in accordance with the Court of Queen’s Bench Practice Note 2 in the form of sworn affidavits, and a brief argument will be allowed for each party. An award will be granted within 48 hours of the Arbitration in the form of an Abbreviated Award with limited summary of facts and limited reasons, in accordance with s.38(1) of the Arbitration Act. 2. Special Chambers Matters in Arbitration (Half Day) Rather than waiting for the Courts to reopen to have your special chambers matter heard, Mountain Vista Law can engage in Arbitration to provide a written award. This option is offered at a discounted flat rate of $2,500 for any matter which is booked while the court closure is in effect. If parties have already submitted the necessary materials to the Court, the Arbitration can take place on an expedited basis. If parties have not yet filed with the Court and see Arbitration as a reasonable option to their matter, the following deadlines are suggested, but may be modified by agreement of the parties and the Arbitrator: The format of the Affidavits and Concise Letter would follow the rules set out in the Court of Queen’s Bench Practice Note 2, but again can be modified by Agreement of the parties. On the hearing date, parties would present their position before the arbitrator. All evidence intended to be relied upon should be included in the Affidavits. An award will be granted within one week (7 days) of the Arbitration in the form of an Abbreviated Award with limited summary of facts and limited reasons, in accordance with s.38(1) of the Arbitration Act. For more complicated circumstances, or where the process needs to be significantly modified from the above, additional charges may apply. Mediation At Mountain Vista Law we are proud to be able to offer Mediation. Erin Barvir is an experienced mediator who can help families find amicable solutions to their family law matters. Mediation provides a safe, confidential, informal atmosphere which allows parties to discuss their needs, goals and concerns and develop a strategy to achieve a mutually agreeable resolution. It allows parties to make their own decisions and retain control of the outcome of their matter. Mediation can be used at any time, for any part or parts of a family law matter. This may include: Parenting Custody/Access Child Support Spousal Support Division of Property Determination of Incomes If you and your former partner or co-parent are having a difficult time coming to an agreement but are committed to coming up with a solution outside of the court system, you may wish to consider Mediation. Frequently, Mediation results in a quicker and more cost effective solution than would be possible through the traditional, adversarial litigious approach. Parties are welcome to attend Mediation either with or without their own legal counsel present. Mediation/Arbitration In circumstances where parties wish to resolve their differences outside of the courtroom, but may not be able to reach an agreed upon solution through Mediation, they may wish to try Mediation/Arbitration. Erin Barvir has also completed extensive training as an Arbitrator and is able to provide Arbitration services through Mountain Vista Law. In Mediation/Arbitration, parties initially try to come to an amicable, mediated resolution. If an agreement cannot be reached in Mediation, then the parties agree ahead of time that the process will move into an Arbitration. In Arbitration, the Arbitrator becomes the decision maker for the parties. Some people think of it as hiring a private judge. The difference between going to court and hiring an Arbitrator is that in Arbitration, the parties can tailor the process to their own needs and timelines and do not have to follow the strict rules of the court. It can be done in a relatively informal way, or can be done in a formal fashion, including the use of court reporters and sworn evidence if necessary. It is customized to the individual needs of the parties. It is also worth noting that some types of court dates (e.g. Trials) can take well over a year to book in the courtroom. The same process can be completed in a fraction of the time through Arbitration. While we encourage parties to try Mediation first, this is not an absolute requirement, and parties may choose to begin the process with Arbitration. Mediation/Arbitration and Arbitration can both be attended by either just the parties themselves or with their own lawyer present.