In Nevada, as in the U.S., there are two primary means of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) utilized by those in the legal system.
The first is arbitration, where a lawyer or a judge oversees a case, generally in a more casual and more abbreviated hearing than one would find at a jury trial. Many Nevada arbitrations typically take a half day to a full day. They are contested hearings with relaxed rules of evidence. The arbitrator makes a decision on the case once evidence is heard. Appeals are frequently possible depending on the nature of the arbitration.
The second form of ADR is mediation, a non-binding process where the parties “break out” into separate rooms. The mediator, usually a lawyer or a judge, goes back and forth between the parties to attempt to negotiate settlement. If the parties cannot agree on settlement, the case proceeds within the contested litigation system.
Steve is the Managing Shareholder of Steven J. Klearman & Associates, a civil litigation law firm located in Reno, Nevada. He practices primarily in the areas of civil litigation and injury law, and has authored one of the definitive guides to Nevada civil law that is widely used by Nevada judges and attorneys, his book entitled Elements of Nevada Legal Theories.