Partnership Disputes: Your Guide To Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) In Florida
Business partners end up in disputes for many different reasons. A partnership dispute, even if it turned ugly, does not necessarily mean you are headed for lawsuit. Quite the contrary, business partnership disputes are often good candidates for alternative dispute resolution (ADR). As noted by the Florida Bar Association, the term ADR is used to describe a range of different formal processes through which parties can resolve a dispute without restoring to a lawsuit or a trial.
Here, our West Palm Beach partnership dispute lawyers offer a guide to alternative dispute resolution in Florida.
Alternative Dispute Resolution: Know Your Options
Litigation poses a potential problem for business partners: A lawsuit can be a long, conflict-heavy, expensive process. The purpose of alternative dispute resolution is to help the parties find a faster, simpler answer. Some ADR options for business partnership disputes in South Florida include:
- Mediation: Mediation is a structured, interactive negotiation process whereby the parties attempt to resolve a partnership dispute in a collaborative and low-conflict manner. A neutral mediator helps parties understand their issues and work towards a resolution. Mediation is generally voluntary and non-binding.
- Arbitration: Arbitration is another ADR option for resolving partnership disputes. In many ways, arbitration can be thought of as a private, mini version of a trial. A neutral arbitrator will render a decision. In Florida, the decision of an arbitration is generally enforceable and appeal rights are extremely limited.
- Neutral Evaluation: A neutral case evaluation is a confidential dispute resolution option that can be effective for business partners locked in a conflict, but who want to reach a good faith settlement. Each party will make their case before a neutral evaluator. The evaluator will then give an opinion on the dispute. Evaluations are non-binding and strictly confidential. Though, they can often help to push the parties towards an agreement that works.
Partnership Disputes are Often Well-Suited for ADR
Partnership litigation is often not in the best interest of either party. By definition, business partners are, at least to some extent, on the same side. They share some mutual interests. Prolonged litigation can cause significant damage to the underlying business. An ugly lawsuit between business partners could turn into a case with no winners.
Although litigation does prove to be necessary in some partnership disputes, many of these cases are well-suited for alternative dispute resolution, including mediation, arbitration, or neutral evaluation. With a proactive approach, you and your business partners can explore every available avenue to resolve a dispute in an efficient, fair, and cost effective manner.
Call Our Palm Beach County Partnership Lawyers for Immediate Help
At Pike & Lustig, LLP, our Florida business law attorneys handle the full array of partnership dispute cases. If you have any questions about partnership disputes and alternative dispute resolution, we can help. Call our firm now to schedule your confidential initial appointment. We represent clients throughout South Florida from our law offices in West Palm Beach and Miami.