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23 Alternatives to court

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1. Introduction

2. What alternatives are there to court?

3. Do I need a lawyer to use alternative dispute resolution?

4. How do I decide whether to use an alternative dispute resolution scheme?

5. How do alternative dispute resolution schemes work?

6. Mediation and conciliation

7. Adjudication and arbitration

8. Grievance and complaints procedure

These are usually the first stage of resolution for many disagreements you have with companies or government departments. In some cases, you can use another method of sorting out a problem (such as an ombudsman) only if you have gone through the complaints procedure.

The best complaints procedures are usually those where complaints are handled at a local level, often informally. This can be best for everyone. However, many complaints procedures do not have time limits, so sorting out a problem can take a long time. Also, complaints procedures are not independent, because they are drawn up and handled by the organisation you are complaining about.

If you are frustrated by a complaints procedure and feel you have done everything possible to sort out the problem by using it, find out what the next stage is. This is often an ombudsman.

9. Litigation

10. Negotiation

11. Ombudsmen

12. How much does alternative dispute resolution cost?

13. Dispute resolution services

14. Further help

15. About this leaflet


This leaflet is published by the Gurkha Free Legal Advice (LSC). It was written in association with the Advice Services Alliance.

Leaflet Version: November 2007

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