The rising cost of going to court will act as a deterrent and steer people towards alternative dispute resolution, the country’s Attorney General says.
As the government launched its new dispute resolution guide yesterday, Attorney General Nicola Roxon said ADR should be the increasingly attractive choice for disputes.
In launching Your guide to dispute resolution, Roxon said “alternative dispute resolution makes getting an outcome much easier.”
“I want the Davids, not just the Goliaths, to have access to our legal system.
“Alternative dispute resolution opens up the doors of justice to all Australians,” she said.
In a bid to push ADR as a more viable means of solving disputes, Roxon announced increased court fees as a deterrent.
“And that’s one of the reasons why we are making changes to court fees announced in the 2012-13 Budget. Court fees have the capacity to send pricing signals to people that the courts should not be the first port of call for resolving disputes and to encourage them to use ADR processes where appropriate,” she said.
She said small disputes and those of large commercial organisation will avoid courts and see ADR as a “more efficient and affordable means of resolving disputes”.
Your guide to dispute resolution contains information about how some ADR processes work and is designed to assist ordinary Australians to use ADR to resolve their disputes.
“I congratulate the National Alternative Dispute Resolution Advisory Council (NADRAC) on their work in providing a guide that is so accessible and user friendly,” Roxon said.