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What alternative dispute resolutions are available in divorce?

On Behalf of | Feb 3, 2024 | Divorce

yellow sticky notes with mediation concept of disagreement and then agreement

Divorce is often a stressful and emotionally-draining event, all the more so if you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse are set on battling out your differences in court. The process can be quicker, easier and far more amicable if you pursue alternative dispute resolutions instead.

Alternative dispute resolutions refer to the methods of working together to find a mutually-agreeable compromise that benefits both parties and facilitates a healthy family dynamic. Learning more about the types of dispute resolution you can attempt outside of court will help you determine the best path forward.


Mediation is perhaps the most common form of alternative dispute resolution, and for good reason. With the guidance of an unbiased mediator, each side in a divorce is able to advocate for their priorities until they arrive at an agreeable middle ground.

Collaborative divorce

The collaborative divorce process is similar to mediation in the sense that it is confidential and aims for an amicable outcome. Where it differs is that the two sides agree to collaborate toward a mutually beneficial conclusion with the help of their respective lawyers, rather than a single impartial mediator.


Arbitration resembles the standard courtroom litigation process but is typically quicker and less confrontational due to the nature of occurring outside of court. Arbitration differs from mediation and collaborative divorce processes in that an arbitrator will pass judgment at the end of proceedings, ensuring that the process comes to a definitive conclusion.

Alternative dispute resolutions can allow for a smoother transition to a post-divorce lifestyle. Choosing ADR can be especially prudent if you have children to consider, as reaching an amicable outcome in your divorce can also be instrumental in establishing a healthy co-parenting dynamic.