In family arbitration you and your partner appoint an arbitrator, who will make a decision that will be final and binding between the parties, on any financial and property disputes or some child-related issues arising from family relationships.
Family arbitration enables couples going through family breakdown to resolve disputes more quickly, confidentially and in a more flexible and less formal setting than a courtroom.
The same arbitrator will deal with all stages of the case from start to finish and you and your partner have the major say in how the proceedings are run. This could include, for example, choosing the venue, whether to meet face to face or through writing only, or whether to use the arbitrator for the whole process or just parts of it that you are stuck on.
The flexibility and the fact that you will get a final decision much more quickly can make arbitration more cost-effective than court.
You can find out more about the benefits of arbitration on The Institute of Family Law Arbitrator's website.
There are some situations where arbitration might not be suitable, for example if you need to get evidence from third parties or there is a risk that your partner might try to hide assets, but arbitration is a genuine alternative to going to court for most family cases.