Arbitration is a form of dispute resolution which takes place outside a formal court room and is designed to help you resolve your issues quickly and cost effectively.

Separating couples agree to appoint a suitably qualified person (an arbitrator) who will hear issues concerning finances or children before they make a decision (known as an award) which you will be bound by.

The arbitrator has wide-ranging powers to make decisions on any case management or substantive issues which cannot be agreed by separating couples.

It is possible to arbitrate even if you are currently in court proceedings. Arbitration can also complement family mediation.

For more information about Family Arbitration see here


Benefits of Arbitration:


Subject to the arbitrator’s availability, the timetable is up to you both to agree. You avoid the risk of a case being adjourned or not finished because of pressure on court time or a judge becoming unavailable. Arbitration is likely to take significantly less time than court proceedings.


You will have to pay the arbitrator’s fees, the cost of any venue which is hired, and the cost of a transcription service, if required. However, the ability to limit disclosure and the scope of the dispute, if properly utilised, should in many cases lead to a cost saving, since you are able to agree to slim your case down and concentrate on the essential points to be decided


Under the Rules of the arbitration schemes, you and the arbitrator have considerable discretion over the procedures adopted in order to reach a fair result under English Law. In consultation with the arbitrator, you have complete flexibility as to the time and place of hearings

Choice of decision-maker

You do not have the right to choose a judge within court proceedings, but you do have the right under the schemes to choose your arbitrator. Knowing that a dispute will be resolved by a selected specialist with appropriate experience will be very attractive to many separating couples and their advisers. Once appointed, the arbitrator deals with all stages of the case from start to finish.


The entire process is protected by strict confidentiality under the Rules of both arbitration schemes

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