Alternative Dispute Resolution

Alternative Dispute Resolution for Estate and Trust Disputes

Many times, in estate disputes, Alternative dispute resolution can be a chosen substitutefor litigation. In Estates, there are many emotional situations which need to be addressed apart from the existential legal issues.
Alternative dispute resolutionis seen as a process which typically increases the chances of the settlement between parties for estate disputes.Conversely, litigation may seek to enhance the acrimony between the parties to the conflict.Using Alternative dispute resolution methods to resolve conflicts can be faster, less expensive, and also helps parties reach a creative solution.
At Nanda & Associate Lawyers, experienced Estate Lawyers have used Alternative dispute resolution effectively to solve many estate disputes since the firm’s inception.


What are the different methods of Alternative dispute resolution?

Mediation and Arbitration are two methods by which disputes can be resolved, without going to court.


Mediation is a proven method of resolving disputes between parties. It is a part of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) in which a neutral third party, called the mediator helps to reach a mutually agreeable solution. They help the parties to negotiate and communicate with each other to encourage them towards a solution.
The mediator does not force any decision, instead supports the parties to conclude on their own. It is a cost-effective way of resolving estate disputespromptly, which involve guardianship or power of attorney.


In the process of arbitration, a neutral third party is present, known as the arbitrator. Both parties present their sides of the dispute along with the necessary evidence,and the arbitrator makes a decision. The arbitrator’s decision is binding upon both the parties.
Arbitration is less costly and saves time as compared to litigation. It also helps in maintaining relationships and reduces acrimony between the parties to the dispute.
How is Alternative Dispute Resolution method implemented?
At Nanda & Associate Lawyers, our experienced and knowledgeable Estate Lawyers implement alternative dispute resolution methods in many estate disputes areas including but not limited to:
• Estate trustee/executor disputes
• Passing of accounts
• Guardianships
• Conflicts regarding Power of attorney
• Family disputes relating to estate and the succession planning

Is Alternative Dispute Resolution mandatory?

In many Ontario jurisdictions, including Toronto, Mediation is mandatory in estate disputes where power of attorney and guardianship are involved.

How does Alternative Dispute Resolution take place?

In the course of litigation, the parties may decide to go ahead with mediation or arbitration at any time. When the parties are involved in the power of attorney and guardianship litigation, mediation or arbitration may be resorted by the parties. In many circumstances, mediation can be started even before litigation.

What are the key benefits of using Alternative Dispute Resolution?

Alternative Dispute Resolution is a better option for resolving disputes as compared to estate litigation. It takes less time, reduced efforts, and minimal stress as compared to litigation.Alternative Dispute Resolution helps in achieving desirable outcomes while also supporting to build a relationship between the parties by reducingacrimony. Alternative Dispute Resolution has many advantages, including but not limited to:
Cost Efficiency
Costs of a mediator or an arbitrator are much lesser as compared to full-blown court litigation. In case the arbitration or mediation process goes on for a couple of days, it is still more reasonable than a judicial hearing or court trial.
Mutually Agreeable Solutions
In litigation or arbitration, the decision of the judge or arbitrator is imposed upon the parties which do not take place in mediation. The process of mediation allows for the parties to negotiate and craft a solution which is consensual and agreeable to both parties.
Both the parties have a role to play inarbitration or mediation as they can voice their thoughts and concerns. Such a clear and direct involvement of both the parties does not take place in litigation.
In litigation, all court proceedings are present in the public domain, while in arbitration and mediation, complete confidentiality is ensured.
Litigation involves many years and numerous procedures to be done by both parties. The process of mediation or arbitration can take place at any time,and often, many disputes end up getting settled with just one or two days.

Is Alternative Dispute Resolutionuseful for resolving all type of estate disputes?

In some instances, Alternative Dispute Resolution is notconsidered to be appropriate. In a few cases, there may be a vast power imbalance between the parties or the opportunity to coerce the other party into a settlement may be present. In such cases, mediation would not be appropriate.
In most other cases, mediation is an excellent alternative to litigation.

How We Can Help

Our experienced Estate Lawyers will act as mediators to help you understand all possible legal options available to you. We will support you in reaching the most beneficial solution by avoiding litigation. Our GTA Wills and Estate Lawyers are available for an initial consultation.

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