The role of the dispute resolution practitioner
A dispute resolution practitioner:
- May be appointed by party agreement, to decide a dispute (e.g. statutory adjudication or arbitration, or expert determination), or to assist the parties to settle their dispute (e.g. mediation).
- Must be and remain independent of all parties, and treat all parties even-handedly.
- Will not advise the parties, upon the choice of dispute resolution process or otherwise—parties are encouraged to seek independent legal or other professional advice.
- Must not have any undeclared conflict of interest, or interest in the outcome of the dispute.
Conflict of interest
Any matters, such as previous relationships with a party, that create a perception of conflict of interest will be disclosed to the parties. In order to ensure transparency any correspondence with one party will be copied to all other parties. Where there is an actual or perceived conflict of interest the dispute resolution practitioner should withdraw unless the parties have acknowledged the disclosure and expressly agreed to the appointment.
Independent Neutral Services
Peter Degerholm acts as dispute resolution practitioner in the following dispute resolution processes:
- Adjudication under the Construction Contracts Act 2002
- Mediation for a wide range of disputes including construction and commercial
- Arbitration (Arbitration Act 1996)
- Dispute Resolution Board
- Expert Determination (including NZS 3915)
Each option allows the parties a greater or lesser degree of choice over the process with regard to time, cost and other factors; the selection of the person to act, and how the process will be conducted.