Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) offers cost-effective and time-saving alternatives to traditional litigation and has been in place in the Northern District of Ohio since 1991. The Court's Local Rules provide guidelines for the use of a wide menu of ADR processes designed to provide a less expensive, faster and more satisfying alternative to traditional litigation. In addition to ADR, the Court also encourages the use of extra-judicial processes to resolve disputes including mini-trials, private trials, fact-finding and private ADR processes.
ADR processes are confidential and information disclosed at an ADR proceeding may not be provided to the Court, to third parties or anyone else, including settlement terms, unless counsel/parties provide written consent to such disclosure. ADR processes are treated as compromise negotiations for purposes of the federal and state rules of evidence. ADR processes are managed by a court-qualified neutral who is disqualified from serving as a witness, consultant, attorney or an expert in any pending or future action relating to the dispute, including actions between persons not parties to the ADR process.