ADR Systems congratulates Hon. Michael J. Hogan, (Ret.), Hon. Clifford L. Meacham, (Ret.) and Kevin R. Sido, Esq. on being named in Leading Lawyers’ Top 10 for ADR. Leading Lawyers is an online directory for the nation’s most prominent legal professionals. Every year, Leading Lawyers asks thousands of attorneys which of their peers they believe represent top talent in their respective regions and areas of law.
According to ADR Systems’ Senior Mediator and Arbitrator Kevin R. Sido, Esq., Leading Lawyers’ ADR category is likely becoming of more interest to the legal community due to a “spill-over” effect. “Attorneys have come to realize in the last decade that ADR is a necessary component of any successful legal practice,” stated Sido. The settlement conferences of yesteryear are drastically decreasing as attorneys and courts alike increase their use of private providers to help resolve their disputes.
The benefits of using ADR, or alternative dispute resolution, are innumerable, and vary widely. However, the time and cost savings, flexibility, and increased level of client satisfaction and client control that ADR provides has, as Mr. Sido noted, never been more clearly recognized in the legal community, and beyond. The advantages of using a process that saves you time and money are obvious. However, ADR also provides a forum where clients can actively participate in the resolution of their case. Settling a case before trial used to entail attorneys working out a deal in the judges’ chambers and relaying the outcome to their clients afterward. “With ADR, clients can feel that they too have control over a process in which they ultimately have the most at stake,” added Sido. Attorneys are also beginning to recognize that not all disputes fit in the one-size-fits-all box that defines litigation. According to Mr. Sido, many disputes actually require the direct involvement of the clients in order for a viable settlement to be reached. This is particularly true for cases that involve non-monetary or emotionally sensitive matters, or cases that involve more sophisticated clients who have an intimate understanding of the issues at hand. ADR’s flexibility gives clients a chance to be heard, and allows parties to be creative when negotiating the terms of their settlement agreement.
Especially for corporate disputes involving parties who would like to maintain a business relationship, Mr. Sido said that ADR is often the wisest path to resolution. Unlike a verdict rendered by a judge or jury, settlement agreements can include terms that determine not only a dollar amount, but also how future business partnerships will play out between the disputants. In cases like this, it is imperative to have the clients directly involved in negotiations. Corporate clients can often speak to their business needs more effectively than their representatives, and know what it will take to reach a settlement that works for everybody.
As the example above illustrates, ADR is much more than a cost-effective alternative to trial. ADR offers a level of flexibility and control that, for many cases, will be even more beneficial to clients long-term than the immediate time and cost savings. And when your clients are happy, you’ll share in their joy.
Kevin R. Sido, Esq. is a Senior Mediator and Arbitrator at ADR Systems and Partner at Hinshaw & Culbertson.
For more information about how ADR can work for you and your clients, call us at 312.960.2260.
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