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Why Does the Court Offer Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)?

A message from the Chief Justice:

The mission of the Judiciary, as an independent branch of government, is to administer justice in an impartial, efficient, and accessible manner in accordance with the law. We are committed to helping parties resolve their disputes as fairly, quickly, and efficiently as possible. Cases filed in our courts present a wide range of issues and circumstances. No single process can be expected to meet the needs of all cases.

While traditional litigation may serve parties’ interests well in some situations, many cases have needs that can be better met through other procedures. The Judiciary offers a selection of ADR options so that parties can use the procedure that best fits the particular circumstances of their case.

ADR processes offer numerous advantages over both formal litigation and direct negotiations between the parties. In contrast to formal litigation and direct negotiations, ADR procedures may lead to resolutions that are:

  • Faster.
  • Less expensive.
  • More creative.
  • Better tailored to all parties’ underlying interests.

We urge you to consider using an ADR process in your case. The Judiciary’s Center for Alternative Dispute Resolution is available to help answer your questions about ADR and how ADR may meet your needs.

To help you make informed choices, court rules require parties or their lead counsel involved in all civil cases to confer, in person, with the opposing parties or their lead counsel to consider the feasibility of settlement and ADR options. Rule 2.1 of the Hawai`i Rules of Professional Conduct provides that lawyers should advise clients of alternative forms of dispute resolution that might be used to resolve the dispute or reach the legal objective.

We have committed substantial resources to our ADR programs because we are confident that litigants who use them conscientiously can save significant time and money, and will often obtain more satisfying results.

Mark E. Recktenwald
Chief Justice
Hawai`i State Judiciary