This option is potentially quicker and less costly than court action. A qualified arbitrator, agreed by the parties or appointed by the IFLA (Institute of Family Law Arbitrators), considers the facts and adjudicates to determine the solution to the dispute.
Crucially, arbitrators are impartial and independent. Before the hearing, each side agrees to respect and adhere to the binding decision. Challenges or appeals are not usually possible; a pre-arbitration agreement limits such rights and recriminations.
Arbitration is suitable for most family-related disputes, though not all contentious issues. Typically, it offers a cost-effective and confidential route to resolve property and financial questions, as well as child care and contact. Though more formal than mediation, it is more flexible than court proceedings. In some cases, a court will formally document the award or determination made through a consent order