Family arbitration is an out of court dispute resolution process where an Arbitrator makes an award to settle whatever disputes are before them. The Arbitrator's decision is binding subject to the right of either client to appeal.
To ensure that arbitration is the appropriate process for the family and is safe and free from any power imbalances, each client meets with a third-party screener for a confidential meeting. The screener will assess whether there are any power imbalances between the two clients, whether both clients have access to legal advice, whether there would be a negative impact on any children involved and in general if the file is appropriate for arbitration. The screener then provides a confidential written report to the Arbitrator only. The screener may also indicate that the file is appropriate to move forward to arbitration with specific accommodations for one or both participants. Screening is a mandatory requirement under the Ontario Arbitration Act.
While Arbitrators may accept reports from separate screeners, we will only take files where we meet with both clients individually.
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