The Convergence of ADR and ODR Within the Courts: The Impact on Access to Justice
(2019) 38(1) Civil Justice Quarterly 126 [available on Westlaw]
Posted: 1 Aug 2018 Last revised: 1 Jul 2019
Date Written: May 15, 2018
The complexion of justice within many judiciaries has changed dramatically through the influence of two global movements – the modern alternative dispute resolution (ADR) movement and the more recent development of online dispute resolution (ODR). The former wave led to the creation of multi-door courthouses, court-annexed mediation programmes and innovations such as judicial settlement conferences. In the last decade, the rapid growth of ODR has precipitated more changes in the administration of justice. Online courts have been designed in England and Wales (the Online Solutions Court suggested by Lord Briggs) and British Columbia (the Civil Resolution Tribunal). This paper discusses the impact of the ADR and ODR waves on access to justice within the courts. It examines how substantive justice, procedural justice and accessibility to the judiciary have undergone transformation as the courts have incorporated these two waves into the justice system. The paper also considers the implications of the increasing convergence of both waves within the justice system. It argues that greater clarity is needed concerning the changes to access to justice amidst the courts’ embracing of innovation.
Keywords: Online Dispute Resolution, Mediation, Access to Justice, Online Court, Civil Resolution Tribunal, Online Solutions Courts, ADR, Courts
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