Arbitrator And Consensual Special Magistrate

Parties to a family law dispute will often choose to send their case to a private arbitrator for a specific issue rather than have a court decide it. This is often true, for example, with a dispute over the division of household goods and furnishings at the conclusion of a divorce case. Instead of having their attorneys litigate that issue, they will choose a more informal and less-expensive binding arbitration process. By doing so, they hope to get a binding resolution in less time and at less expense than in court. The arbitrator's decision is final and cannot be reviewed by the court.

I have a lot of experience in dividing personal property in divorce cases. I will often use a mediation/arbitration model, if the parties agree.

Any issue that can be litigated in court can be handled in a binding arbitration process. The parties can fashion their own process and rules to fit the needs of their situation.

Another form of arbitration is to appoint a Consensual Special Magistrate (CSM) to make a decision. In this process the CSM acts more like a judge in the way that evidence is received and a decision is made. Court review of the CSM's decision can be included in the process. A court order is necessary to appoint a CSM.

Contact Mike Black For More Information

I like to get some background on the case and have input on the court order before accepting an appointment as an arbitrator or CSM. To speak to me, contact my firm via email or phone. A short phone conversation will likely help you understand your options and what next steps are available. Call my St. Paul office at 651-222-2587.