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ADR: Paths to Settlement

Resolución Alternativa de Disputas: Vías a la conciliación



This  is  an informal  process  that  provides  those  actually  involved  in  a  court  case  with  the  opportunity to determine the best resolution for all involved.  It's a chance to end a legal dispute in a way that minimizes time spent at court and saves money. It offers a safe, private, online space to negotiate a satisfactory resolution with the other party. In some cases, this can reduce harm to your credit and help avoid wage garnishments or other collections procedures.

During the mediation, neither party will be forced to agree to anything they are not comfortable with.  You are not required to compromise, although sometimes mediated agreements will include compromises offered by one or both parties.


If you received a notice from the court, simply follow the instructions to go to the site and start your negotiation. The Plaintiff will make an initial offer, then the Defendant may agree to that offer or provide a counter-offer.  Hopefully, both parties will be able to come to an agreement that resolves the case.

If settled, an agreement will be prepared automatically, both parties will approve of the agreement and it will become an enforceable agreement by the court.              

During the first two weeks of negotiations, if an agreement has not been reached, either party may request the help a trained mediator. If the other party agrees to mediation, a mediator will be assigned to your case and will contact you to assist in reaching an agreement. All this is done online.

If after 30 days you have not settled your case, the online negotiation will end, and your case will go forward in the court system and you will be contacted on what actions to take next.


If you have received an email to participate in the program, your case is required to participate in ODR because many parties are able to settle their case without the cost and time that comes with a trial. You will be in control of your own case and may be able to quickly resolve it online.


An email account is required for Online Dispute Resolution.

If you do not have an email account yet, you can get one for free by going to one of the following websites:

Google: https://www.google.com/gmail

Outlook: https://outlook.live.com

Yahoo: https://overview.mail.yahoo.com

 


A legal case can take months, or sometimes years, to get resolved through court. Plus it often requires taking time off work to attend court hearings and trials.ODR will take up to 30 days to get resolved, if an agreement can be reached, and it can be done at any time of the day.ODR is very flexible. You can "talk" with the other party on your own time, quickly and easily and all online.


Be prepared to answer questions about what you could offer to reach a mutually acceptable agreement. Parties generally find that dispute resolution is more useful when they're prepared and have a plan. Your mediation plan should identify your goals, the other party's goals, and how you might be able to propose a solution that will result in an agreement. Thinking through these things in advance will help you and the other party negotiate an agreement that works for everyone.

 


It’s up to you if you choose to accept or reject the offer.  If the offer doesn’t work for you, it’s helpful to offer an explanation so you can move toward a mutually acceptable solution.  You also have the option to send a counter offer.


Yes, it is a private and confidential process.  If a mediator is involved, the mediator(s) will not reveal what is said in the mediation except (as required by law) to report suspected child or elder abuse or threat of physical harm or damage to property.  The parties agree that the mediators will not be called to testify should future judicial proceedings occur in this case.  The parties agree not to contact the mediators outside the mediation process.


If you have an attorney, the attorney may conduct the online dispute process on your behalf, including any online mediation. 


If you have documents that you think can help the other party or the mediator better understand your concerns or offer, you can upload them on the Files tab in the online mediation system.


ODR works on any mobile device that can access the internet, so if you don’t have a computer, it’s possible to complete the process from your mobile device. Computers with internet access are usually available at your local public library.


Nothing. It is a free service paid for by the New Mexico Judiciary.


If you and the other party reach an agreement, a stipulated agreement will be automatically prepared and will be signed online by both parties. Your agreement will be automatically submitted to the court.  The agreement will be considered a legally binding and enforceable contract and can be enforced by the court.  ODR will automatically prepare a Stipulation of Dismissal and will be automatically submitted to the court.  At that time the case will be dismissed, but may be reopened if either party feels that the other party is not abiding by the agreement.


Yes.  If your case is in Metropolitan or Magistrate Courts, if the terms of an agreement reached in mediation are not fulfilled, the parties agree that the non-breaching party may, within five (5) years of the date on which the Stipulation of Dismissal was filed with the Court, file a Motion for Judgment and Statement of Non-Compliance with the Court, together with a copy of the mediated agreement.  If such a motion is filed with the Court, the case will be re-opened, and the breaching party has fifteen (15) days to respond to the motion and request a hearing so the matter can be heard by the judge.  If the beaching party does not respond or request a hearing, the parties agree that the court may enter a judgment against the party who breached without holding a hearing.  If there is a default, judgment will be entered for the original amount claimed, plus court costs, less any payments received.

If your case is in District Court, you must follow the Rules of Civil Procedure for District Courts to enforce your agreement.

Please note Metropolitan and Magistrate Court Judges do not have legal authority to enforce a mediated agreement which includes the performance of a service or exchange of items (non-monetary agreements). If a mediated agreement includes either one or both of these items and the mediated agreement is breached, then the parties agree the judge may convert the performance of a service or exchange of items into a monetary form and enter a judgment. The parties are encouraged to determine what that amount should be and include that as a part of their mediated agreement.


Either party can suggest a payment plan.  Be specific about your expectations.  Be prepared to answer these questions:

  1. How often would payments be made?
  2. What would be the amount of each payment?
  3. When would the amount be paid in full?
  4. How will the payments be delivered (in person, by mail, online?)
  5. What is the form of payment (check, cash, money order, online payment?)

 


Within the first two weeks of ODR, both parties can request the assistance of a trained mediator.  A mediator is a trained professional that can help you and the other party understand the issue to find a solution that works for both of you. Asking a mediator for help does not cost you or the other party anything. If both parties agree to use a mediator, he or she will be assigned to your case and will contact you.  All this is done online.


A mediator is a trained professional that can help you and the other party understand the issue to find a solution that works for both of you.  Asking a mediator for help does not cost you or the other party anything.


If after 30 days you have not settled your case using ODR, the online mediation will end, and your case will go forward in the court system and you will be contacted by the court on what actions to take next.


Yes, it is WCAG 2.0 Compliant.


Below are the recommended requirements to successfully use the ODR Platform.
Browser Requirements

  • Internet Explorer® 10 or 11
  • ChromeTM
  • Mozilla® Firefox®
  • Safari®

Operating Systems & Device Types

  • Microsoft® Windows
  • Linux®
  • Chrome OSTM
  • OS X®

Minimum Hardware Requirements

  • Intel® CoreTM Duo processors or AMD processors manufactured in 2012 or later
  • 2 GB of RAM
  • 1366 x 768 resolution screens for desktop computers, or 1280 x 720 resolution screens for mobile devices

Recommended Hardware Requirements

  • Intel® CoreTM i3 or AMD A6 processors with at least a 2.0 GHz clock speed
  • 4 GB of RAM
  • 1920 x 1080 resolution for both desktop computers and mobile devices

Connection Requirements

  • A high-speed Internet connection is recommended

Mobile Requirements

  • iOS 8 and newer (Safari recommended)
  • Android 6 and newer (Chrome recommended)