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Arbitration is a process similar to a private court process in a setting of your choice. You and you partner will need to agree to use the process and sign and ARB1 and you will need to appoint an arbitrator. Your lawyer can help you with this process.The arbitrator will make a decision that will be final and binding in relation to any issues regarding financial matters or children matters. Arbitration enables disputes to be resolved quickly, confidentially and flexibly in a less formal setting than the Court. It can be used to determine all issues or used for a decision on a specific matter (for example if you have agreed all matters but need a decision relating to pensions).
The same Arbitrator will manage all stages of the process until final determination and you and your partner will have a great deal of input into how the case is progressed. You can choose the venue, the date of any hearings, whether oral evidence is needed, or whether you would like a decision made on the papers and in writing only.
There are many benefits of Arbitration including confidentiality, flexibility, speed, choice of Arbitrator and the fact that it is more cost effective than the court process.
Catherine Sousa is an Arbitrator (Children Scheme) and will be happy to discuss the process in greater detail and provide an estimate of costs on request.
Further information can be found on the IFLA website www.ifla.org.uk