An arbitration is a binding hearing that is very similar to a non-jury trial in the public courts. The ADR Options Rules of Procedure and the relevant federal or state laws govern the procedural and substantive elements of an arbitration. These rules may be changed with the agreement of all parties. We highly recommend the high-low arbitration format.
High-low is an arbitration where the parties agree beforehand to limit the award to a pre-set maximum and minimum. These amounts allow both plaintiff and defendant to limit their risk as it pertains to the award.
“Baseball” arbitration allows both sides to make their final offer and demand. The arbitrator then chooses either the demand or offer without modification. This process is intended to discourage extreme positions in a case.
High-low arbitration is most appropriate when parties want to limit their risk. Arbitrations may also be held to determine strictly the liability on the case and in some cases it can be bifurcated.
The binding nature of an arbitration makes it advisable to use counsel when evidence is presented.
The arbitration is conducted in the same fashion as a non-jury trial in the public courts. The arbitrator will introduce the parties and explain the process. Opening statements are then made, followed by each side presenting its case and the arbitration concludes with each side’s closing argument.
When choosing a high-low arbitration, the parties determine the high-low parameters. ADR options will assist if requested. The parameters are not disclosed to the arbitrator. They are kept confidential by the parties or are recorded and maintained in a sealed envelope at our office until the decision is rendered. If the award is above the high parameter, the claimant receives the high amount. If the award is below the low parameter, the claimant receives the low amount. If the award is between the high and low parameters, the claimant receives the actual award decided by the arbitrator.