Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)

Many civil disputes can be resolved without the time and expense of traditional civil litigation. Most typically, Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) is used.  Black’s Law Dictionary defines ADR as a process adopted to end a problem before taking legal action. When a resolution to a dispute is sought out of court, the processes of arbitration, conciliation, and possession proceedings are alternates for the court system. This is a voluntary choice and a 3rd party is used to keep things neutral. ADR can be used at any point in the process of seeking a settlement and in some cases may be a required alternative to court, particularly where agreed to in a contract.

Benefits of ADR

Even where litigation has already started, parties may attempt settlement and negotiation by using ADR. While it is not right for every situation, it may lower the costs of litigation, offer faster results and greater flexibility to parties, preserve relationships where parties have a relationship with one another, and keep proceedings off the public record.

ADR in Massachusetts

The Massachusetts Trial Courts encourage parties in civil cases to explore the option of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR). Notably, John Tramontozzi is regularly called upon to serve as mediator and arbitrator by his peers to assist in the resolution of some of the challenging cases in the Commonwealth. Because ADR saves parties involved in disputes the time, expense and uncertainty of going to trial, in many situations, it is a great option. John delivers superior results using personalized strategies founded on his broad litigation experience in and out of the courts. He is called upon in more complex and contentious cases to render his opinion and move these cases to a less costly resolution.

Although there are various types of ADR, the most commonly used processes to resolve disputes are Mediation and Arbitration.


Mediation:  A voluntary, informal, confidential process in which the mediator (a neutral third party) facilitates settlement negotiations. Working toward improving communication by and among the parties, a mediator helps parties clarify facts, identify legal issues, explore options, and arrive at a mutually acceptable resolution of the dispute.


Arbitration:  The arbitrator hears evidence presented by the parties, makes legal rulings, determines facts and makes an arbitration award. Dictated in accordance with the agreement of the parties in writing, Arbitration awards may be entered as judgments and can be binding or non-binding, as agreed by the parties in writing. (Resource:

The cornerstone of John’s success in obtaining satisfactory results in the dispute resolution process is to identify the common ground where each of the opposing parties needs can be met. Please contact us to learn if ADR is right for you and please check out this handy pamphlet from