Dispute resolution and how to avoid it all together`

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We would all like to be more friendly and have deep meaningful relationships with everyone we interact with, albeit it’s not something that normally happens. Somehow, we concentrate on the negatives more, even if they are not life changing. This is human nature but it’s crucial that we work on ourselves tirelessly and continue to grow as individuals. This spreads in all aspects of our life including dealing with different companies and tradespeople. Over the last 10 years, we’ve heard all kind of stories where people act irrationally, even though it’s something that could have been resolved quite easily should they kept their ego out of it. It’s challenging to find the right approach to everyone you deal with but there are few things to consider before making harsh moves:

  1. Is the other party acting unreasonably? What is their angle and is there a win-win resolution in sight to keep both parties happy?
  2. Is this going to cost you your relationship with the other side and is this something you can let go?
  3. Take out all principles out of the equation and try to put yourself into their shoes to understand their argument
  4. Seek middle ground which will save you time, money and grief
  5. Never insist entirely on what you have to say, as this will restrict the positive outcomes that you may reach if you are more flexible and open-minded

If this fails and you are unable to reach an agreement that will serve both involved, have a look at the dire consequences of litigation and dispute resolution, which should be last resort:

  1. Claims under £10,000 can be resolved in small claims court using www.moneyclaims.gov.uk with relative ease, although you will have to put a lot of work into presenting your case correctly which may waste weeks of your time. Also be careful as the other side might counter claim which will add stress to the situation as well as cost money if it’s a reasonable claim
  2. Claims over £10,000 would require a solicitor who will prepare the documents and speak with the other side, very costly and in our opinion a waste of time. It can also take up to 2 years to get a judgement.
  3. Dispute resolution through RICS is meant to be cheaper than going thru courts, however the average cost spent on expenses related to the preparation of documents, appointing an adjudication/mediator and paying for their time can be as much as £15,000 – 20,000
  4. Joint expert can be another option who would prepare a report based on the findings on site which can then be used to retrieve funds owed. This is a lengthy process, normally involving solicitors and costing at least few thousand pounds.

We hope that we are making this clear, try your best to resolve all your differences and find middle ground, it’s not worth going through the legal routes and it’s much cheaper and easier to do so. No one is going to look better after yourself than yourself, don’t fall victim to empty promises of legal representatives or adjudication experts who will claim you have a brilliant case provided you pay their fees, which are typically extortionate.

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