Resolution of a dispute requires careful preparation whether the process used is ADR or litigation. Careful analysis of the dispute involves fact and document gathering and involvement of those who are able to provide evidence. Analysis of the facts and the law are necessary to permit an assessment of risk and of the value of a claim or level of exposure to a claim. Contemporaneous with these assessments, consideration should be given to the use of ADR.
If for any reason ADR is not initially thought to be appropriate, it should nevertheless be considered as circumstances develop and as procedural milestones in litigation are passed – such as at the close of pleadings; production of documents; completion of discoveries; setting down for trial; and at the time of witness preparation for trial. The success rates from using ADR are such that the presumption ought to be that ADR should be used, and justification be sought as to why it is not being used.