One of the widely extolled benefits of using a mediation or arbitration process to resolve disputes rather than proceeding in court is the ability of the parties to choose an arbitrator or mediator with experience in a particular area of law or industry. Indeed, many arbitration or mediation clauses call for such expertise. Is it really a benefit? Are there potential downsides? The answer is yes and yes, but, so long as the needs of your client are carefully assessed, it generally is a benefit and takes advantage of the customization available in mediation and arbitration that is not available in court.
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