Arbitration Services

Mediation & Arbitration

Our Arbitration Experts:

Civil Matters

Family Law Matters

Arbitration is perhaps the most popular and widely known dispute resolution process. Like litigation, Arbitration utilizes an adversarial approach that requires a neutral party (the Arbitrator) to render a binding decision.

Historically, Arbitration has been used most widely in commercial disputes as a private alternative to litigation. However, it is now commonly used to settle other conflicts such as family disputes, estate disputes and other civil disputes. Arbitration developed as a binding, adjudicative process. While these features closely parallel those of traditional court proceedings, there are important distinctions between the two processes.

Unlike litigation, Arbitration generally allows the parties to design most aspects of the resolution process to suit their needs and the nature of the dispute. Further, the parties to an arbitration can choose the Arbitrator, an option that is not available in the traditional court system. Both of these features permit the parties to have a much quicker resolution of the matter.

The Key Features of an Arbitration are as follows:

Voluntary:
Parties must expressly agree to arbitrate in writing. If the parties have agreed to arbitrate, the Court will generally require the parties to submit the dispute to Arbitration.
Controlled:
Parties can control procedural aspects of the process, including the choice of Arbitrator, timing and location of the hearing, as well as who, other than the parties themselves, may be present.
Private:
Arbitrations are confidential as they are conducted in private.
Informal:
Subject to the Arbitration Act (Alberta), there are no prescribed procedural or evidentiary rules governing Arbitration. The rules of procedure are established by the adoption of existing regulations, or by the parties and the Arbitrator.
Adjudicative:
As in litigation, once each side has presented its case, the Arbitrator issues a decision in writing, with the reasons for the decision, unless the parties have agreed that no written award is required.
Binding:
Arbitrations conducted by Gurevitch Burnham Law Office are binding. Arbitration awards are fully enforceable at law through the Courts (if required) and through the Maintenance Enforcement Program. Judicial review of an arbitral award is available only on limited grounds.
Confidential:
Arbitration is generally confidential. Nothing is filed with the Courts, and the decisions rendered by the Arbitrator do not form part of the public record.
Adversarial:
Arbitrations are patterned on the adversarial style of litigation. However, the parties and the Arbitrator determine the process of the hearing. With agreement from the parties, the Arbitrator is afforded the flexibility to assist the parties in finding a mutually agreeable resolution.
Flexible:
The parties have discretion in choosing an arbitrator and the procedure to be followed in resolving the dispute.

What Family Law Issues can Be Arbitrated?

Gurevitch Burnham Law Office will arbitrate all family law matters except:

  • Child welfare matters (CFSA)
  • Cases where there are allegations of child abuse (physical or sexual)
  • Mobility applications where one party seeks to move more than 550 KM
  • Change of custody applications

All other family law matters will be arbitrated, such as:

  • Guideline Income determinations
  • Variation of child support
  • Child support arrears calculations
  • Parenting time applications
  • Variation of parenting time
  • Determination of holiday or other parenting schedules
  • Spousal support applications
  • Division of property
  • Etc.

Family Law Arbitrations at Gurevitch Burnham Law Office

  1. Simple Family Law Arbitrations
    1. For simple matters with few issues that can be heard by the Arbitrator in 1 hour or less (similar to what would be allowed in Queen's Bench morning chambers or Provincial Court Dockets).
    2. Process:
      1. Initiating party provides an application setting out the issues proposed to be resolved and the choice of Arbitrator to Gurevitch Burnham Law Office and the opposing party. The parties could use a court form, or this general form
      2. The responding party agrees to the Arbitration process and choice of Arbitrator. Both parties sign an Arbitration Agreement with Gurevitch Burnham Law Office.
      3. The responding party provides a reply giving a brief response to the applicant's claim and any cross-application.
      4. Each party provides a sworn statement to support their claims, including any documents in support (maximum of 50 pages unless approved by Arbitrator )
      5. At the hearing of the matter (which may be in person or via video conference):
        1. The applicant will have up to 10 minutes to provide their facts and argument;
        2. The respondent will have up to 10 minutes to respond and provide their facts and argument;
        3. The applicant will have up to 5 minutes to offer a rebuttal;
        4. The respondent will have up to 5 minutes to give a further reply;
        5. The Arbitrator will have up to 15 minutes to ask questions of the parties
        6. Each party will have up to 5 minutes to provide closing remarks
        7. The Arbitrator will provide closing directions and advise as to whether the decision will be rendered immediately or in writing within 72 hours.
      6. Costs:
        1. The cost for a simple Family Law Arbitration is $500 per party and includes:
          1. All pre-arbitration scheduling, document review, and communication;
          2. Conducting the Arbitration; and
          3. Drafting the written Arbitration Award.
  2. Complex Family Law Arbitrations
    1. For complex matters with several issues that can be heard by the Arbitrator in a half-day less (similar to what would be allowed in Queen's Bench special chambers applications or half-day hearing in Provincial Court).
    2. Process:
      1. Initiating party provides an application setting out the issues proposed to be resolved and the choice of Arbitrator to Gurevitch Burnham Law Office and the opposing party. The parties could use a court form, or this general form
      2. The responding party agrees to the Arbitration process and choice of Arbitrator. Both parties sign an Arbitration Agreement with Gurevitch Burnham Law Office.
      3. The responding party provides a reply giving a brief response to the applicant's claim and any cross-application.
      4. Each party provides a sworn statement to support their claims, including any documents in support (maximum of 75 pages unless approved by Arbitrator )
      5. Each party to provide a written brief for the Arbitrator setting out their positions, relevant facts in summary, how the law relates to their facts and any cases that they wish to rely upon at the hearing.
      6. At the hearing of the claim (which may be in person or via video conference):
        1. The applicant will have up to 30 minutes to provide their facts and argument;
        2. The respondent will have up to 30 minutes to respond and provide their facts and argument;
        3. The applicant will have up to 20 minutes to offer a rebuttal;
        4. The respondent will have up to 20 minutes to give a further reply;
        5. The Arbitrator will have up to 30 minutes to ask questions of the parties
        6. Each party will have up to 15 minutes to provide closing remarks
        7. The Arbitrator will provide closing directions and advise as to whether the decision will be rendered immediately or in writing within 72 hours.
      7. Costs:
      8. The cost for a half-day complex Family Law Arbitration is $1000 per party and includes:
        1. All pre-arbitration scheduling, document review, and communication;
        2. Conducting the Arbitration; and
        3. Drafting the written Arbitration Award.

What Civil Matters can Be Arbitrated?

Almost all civil and commercial disputes can be resolved through Arbitration, provided both parties agree to submit to the Arbitration. Examples include, but are not limited to:

  • Commercial and Residential Landlord-Tenant Disputes
  • Business disputes
  • Contract disputes
  • Employment disputes
  • Etc.

Civil Law Arbitrations at Gurevitch Burnham Law Office

  1. Simple Civil Arbitrations
    1. For simple matters with few issues that can be heard by the Arbitrator in 1 hour or less (similar to what would be allowed in Queen's Bench morning chambers or Provincial Court Dockets).
    2. Process:
      1. Initiating party provides an application setting out the issues proposed to be resolved and the choice of Arbitrator to Gurevitch Burnham Law Office and the opposing party. The parties could use a court form, or this general form
      2. The responding party agrees to the Arbitration process and choice of Arbitrator. Both parties sign an Arbitration Agreement with Gurevitch Burnham Law Office.
      3. The responding party provides a reply giving a brief response to the applicant's claim and any cross-application.
      4. Each party provides a sworn statement to support their claims, including any documents in support (maximum of 50 pages unless approved by Arbitrator )
      5. At the hearing of the matter (which may be in person or via video conference):
        1. The applicant will have up to 10 minutes to provide their facts and argument;
        2. The respondent will have up to 10 minutes to respond and provide their facts and argument;
        3. The applicant will have up to 5 minutes to offer a rebuttal;
        4. The respondent will have up to 5 minutes to give a further reply;
        5. The Arbitrator will have up to 15 minutes to ask questions of the parties
        6. Each party will have up to 5 minutes to provide closing remarks
        7. The Arbitrator will provide closing directions and advise as to whether the decision will be rendered immediately or in writing within 72 hours.
      6. Costs:
        1. The cost for a simple Civil Arbitration is $500 per party and includes:
          1. All pre-arbitration scheduling, document review, and communication;
          2. Conducting the Arbitration; and
          3. Drafting the written Arbitration Award.
  2. Complex Civil Arbitrations
    1. For complex matters with several issues that can be heard by the Arbitrator in a half-day less (similar to what would be allowed in Queen's Bench special chambers applications or half-day hearing in Provincial Court).
    2. Process:
      1. Initiating party provides an application setting out the issues proposed to be resolved and the choice of Arbitrator to Gurevitch Burnham Law Office and the opposing party. The parties could use a court form, or this, general form
      2. The responding party agrees to the Arbitration process and choice of Arbitrator. Both parties sign an Arbitration Agreement with Gurevitch Burnham Law Office.
      3. The responding party provides a reply giving a brief response to the applicant's claim and any cross-application.
      4. Each party provides a sworn statement to support their claims, including any documents in support (maximum of 75 pages unless approved by Arbitrator )
      5. Each party to provide a written brief for the Arbitrator setting out their positions, relevant facts in summary, how the law relates to their facts and any cases that they wish to rely upon at the hearing.
      6. At the hearing of the claim (which may be in person or via video conference):
        1. The applicant will have up to 30 minutes to provide their facts and argument;
        2. The respondent will have up to 30 minutes to respond and provide their facts and argument;
        3. The applicant will have up to 20 minutes to offer a rebuttal;
        4. The respondent will have up to 20 minutes to give a further reply;
        5. The Arbitrator will have up to 30 minutes to ask questions of the parties
        6. Each party will have up to 15 minutes to provide closing remarks
        7. The Arbitrator will provide closing directions and advise as to whether the decision will be rendered immediately or in writing within 72 hours.
      7. Costs:
        1. The cost for a half-day complex Civil Arbitration is $1000 per party and includes:
          1. All pre-arbitration scheduling, document review, and communication;
          2. Conducting the Arbitration; and
          3. Drafting the written Arbitration Award.

Arbitration Information:

Gurevitch Burnham Law Office understands that when it comes to dispute resolution, parties are often left on their own to navigate an often confusing situation. Alternative Dispute Resolution services are available to help negotiate fairly and quickly matters that might otherwise take lengthy resolutions and often cost much more than necessary. When the parties at issue agree to resolve conflict through arbitration, the results can be private, binding and quickly realized outside of a courtroom and yet remain, fully enforceable under the law. We are pleased to be working with Colleen Jasnich (Arbitrator) in this new area of practice at Gurevitch Burnham Law Office. As a retired Dispute Resolution Officer with the federal government, Colleen brings more than 20 years of experience offering written, published, and Canada-wide and binding decisions to our community. She offers expertise in various industry sectors and represents a fair, transparent and impartial service in arbitration.

If you have questions about Arbitration please contact us to learn more.

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Grande Prairie

 9931 - 106 Ave, Grande Prairie, AB T8V 1J4
 (780) 539-3710       (780) 532-2788
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