How to Find the Right Arbitrator for Your Dispute Resolution

How to Find the Right Arbitrator for Your Dispute Resolution


Disputes are an inevitable part of life, whether in business or personal relationships. When conflicts arise, finding a fair and impartial resolution becomes crucial. One effective method of resolving disputes is through arbitration, a process wherein a neutral third party, known as an arbitrator, assists in reaching a resolution. However, choosing the right arbitrator is vital to ensure a successful outcome. In this article, we will explore the steps involved in finding the right arbitrator for your dispute resolution and provide answers to frequently asked questions.

1. Understand the Role of an Arbitrator

Before embarking on the search for an arbitrator, it is essential to understand their role in the dispute resolution process. An arbitrator acts as a neutral facilitator, guiding both parties towards a fair and mutually acceptable resolution. Unlike a judge, an arbitrator’s decision is binding, meaning that both parties are obligated to abide by their final decision.

2. Identify the Type of Arbitration Needed

Arbitration can take various forms, such as commercial, labor, or family arbitration. It is crucial to identify the specific type of arbitration required for your dispute. This will help narrow down your search for an arbitrator with expertise in handling similar cases.

3. Research Arbitrator Qualifications

When searching for the right arbitrator, it is essential to consider their qualifications. Look for individuals who possess relevant experience, training, and credentials in the specific area of dispute resolution. A qualified arbitrator should have a deep understanding of the relevant laws and regulations governing the dispute as well.

4. Seek Recommendations and Referrals

One effective way to find a suitable arbitrator is by seeking recommendations and referrals from trusted sources. Reach out to colleagues, legal professionals, or industry associations who have previously engaged in arbitration processes. Their insights and experiences can help you identify competent arbitrators who have a proven track record of successfully resolving disputes.

5. Check for Neutrality and Impartiality

Neutrality and impartiality are crucial qualities of a competent arbitrator. Ensure that the potential arbitrator has no personal or financial interests in the outcome of the dispute. This will guarantee a fair and unbiased decision-making process.

6. Review Arbitrator’s Track Record

Before finalizing your choice, carefully review the arbitrator’s track record. Look for information on their previous dispute resolution cases, success rates, and any potential conflicts of interest. This information will give you a better understanding of their capabilities and suitability for your specific dispute.

7. Consider the Arbitration Process and Costs

Different arbitrators may follow different processes and have varying fee structures. It is important to consider these aspects before making a decision. Some arbitrators may prefer a more formal process, while others may adopt a more flexible approach. Additionally, clarify the costs involved, including the arbitrator’s fees, administrative charges, and any other expenses related to the arbitration process.

8. Conduct Preliminary Interviews

Once you have shortlisted potential arbitrators, conduct preliminary interviews to assess their suitability further. During these interviews, discuss the specifics of your dispute, gauge their understanding, and evaluate their communication skills. It is crucial to choose an arbitrator who can effectively facilitate communication between the parties involved.

9. Establish Clear Guidelines and Expectations

Before proceeding with the arbitration process, ensure that both parties and the chosen arbitrator are on the same page regarding guidelines and expectations. This includes discussing the timeline for the resolution, the preferred method of communication, and any specific requirements or limitations.

10. FAQs Section

Q1: How long does arbitration typically take to resolve a dispute?

A: The duration of arbitration can vary depending on the complexity of the dispute and the willingness of both parties to cooperate. While some cases can be resolved within a few months, others may take longer, extending up to a year or more.

Q2: Can I choose an arbitrator who is not familiar with the specific industry involved in the dispute?

A: It is generally advisable to choose an arbitrator who has expertise or experience in the relevant industry. This ensures that the arbitrator has a good understanding of the specific issues and dynamics involved, leading to a more effective resolution.

Q3: Can I terminate the arbitration process if I am not satisfied with the arbitrator’s performance?

A: In certain circumstances, it may be possible to terminate the arbitration process if there are valid concerns about the arbitrator’s impartiality or competence. However, it is important to consult legal professionals and carefully review the arbitration agreement before taking any such steps.


Finding the right arbitrator for your dispute resolution requires careful consideration of their qualifications, experience, and impartiality. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can increase the likelihood of a successful resolution. Remember that selecting an arbitrator is a critical decision, as their expertise and neutrality play a significant role in achieving a fair outcome.

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