The difference between arbitration and litigation

On Behalf of | Mar 24, 2022 | Business Law

Not all legal disputes in Texas require full litigation to achieve a resolution. Court dockets are full as it is, and quick resolution is often possible. In lieu of a full litigation case complete with evidence presentation and cross-examination of witnesses, arbitration often works well in settling the issue. Here are the major differences between these two legal forums.

Time differences

Business litigation disputes that are taken to a full trial must await placement on the particular jurisdictional docket. The courts in Texas are overwhelmingly loaded, and it takes a considerable amount of time before the trial even begins.

In arbitration, the entire process can begin more quickly. Each side agrees upon an arbitrator, who will accept all pertinent information from each party and issue a ruling based on the law at that time.

Potential for appeal

With litigation, there is always the potential for appealing a ruling from a district court. This is not possible with an arbitration proceeding. All parties agree in advance that there is no right to appeal of the arbitrator’s decision. Some business contracts actually require arbitration for any dispute resolution.

Evidence presentation

There is no cross-examination of witnesses in an arbitration case as there is in a litigated case. Full litigation is a trial often presented to a jury whereas an arbitration case involves each party submitting their argument to the arbitrator.

It is also important to note that arbitration is similar to mediation in the area of privacy. Any arbitration ruling can be kept private whereas a formally litigated case will be public record for the most part unless it contains classified information.