Jul 16 2014

Arbitration is often confused with mediation, but there is a difference between the two. When talking about arbitration, a person or the arbitrator attends to the case outside the court with the aim to making a decision that otherwise becomes quite difficult to appeal. In a few words, arbitration is a speedy way to get the verdict to the person involved in a dispute. Contrary to hearing in the courtroom, arbitration is less formal and more flexible such that it can be scheduled more quickly than going to trial. If required, arbitrators can make decisions that a judge is never allowed to make.

Reasons as to why a case goes to arbitration?

In general, the cases that go to arbitration have one of these two reasons.

Mandatory- In some cases, arbitration is mandatory as per the contractual agreement between the parties.

Voluntary- The two groups involved in the arbitration may accept it prior to filing the court case or even after it. Or, they should have a contract mandating the arbitration of disputes.

Who is an arbitrator?

When it comes to mandatory arbitration, any individual can be an arbitrator irrespective of the fact that he/she is a lawyer or not. It is the responsibility of the parties involved to select the arbitrator.  When the party does not agree to do so, it selects the arbitrator on its own. The arbitrator applies the rules like that of a judge.

As far as mandatory arbitration is concerned, one arbitrator hears the case alone. In case of voluntary arbitration, it entirely depends upon the party as to whether it would like to have one arbitrator or a jury of arbitrators. However, this number may increase or decrease depending upon the agreement between the two parties.


Saves both time and money – The process of arbitration works faster than the proceedings that take place in a court system. As arbitration is less formal, attorneys take less time in announcing the verdict.

Experience – When it comes to dealing with any technical or highly complicated dispute, parties can hire an arbitrator who has vast expertise in the field.

Privacy – The proceedings of arbitration can be carried out in private and decisions remain confidential.

Recognized globally – It is far easier to enforce the results of arbitration internationally than the decision of court.

arbitration attorneys


Cost: In contrast to normal legal proceedings, arbitration proceedings are more expensive, but the expenses involved in hiring an arbitrator may cost each of the parties, especially when they have a limit to spend.

Difficult to overturn a bad decision – In any case, if a bad decision has been taken, it becomes difficult to overturn it even if the reasoning of arbitrator was evidently faulty.

Some cases may extend – Though the cases are carried out speedily when there is a single arbitrator, it may extend more than the speculated tenure when there is a panel of arbitrators to handle it.

In any arbitration scenario, we suggest seeking the advice and service of a trained attorney for your own legal safety and ease. The time, money, and effort spent on legal advice can often save what you may spend trying to win such a case on your own. For any arbitration issues, Myburgh Attorneys are always available.

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