Alternative Dispute Resolution

We know that the formal legal process to resolving a dispute can be challenging and stressful, so we are supportive of a different approach. 

There are different methods for resolving disputes that we refer to as Alternative Dispute Resolution.

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    What is Alternative Dispute Resolution?

    Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) is an umbrella term used to describe methods for resolving disputes and can include mediation, conciliation, and facilitation.  

    ADR provides whoever is looking after the dispute and the injured person with an opportunity to engage in meaningful conversations with an independent party to find a way forward or resolution without the need for a more formal review hearing.  

    What are the different stages of the ADR process?

    There are three stages within any ADR.

    Step one: Talking with a conciliator or mediator

    Trained conciliators and mediators are there to help and give guidance. Talking with them gives you the opportunity to understand the process and explain, from your point of view, what your concerns are and what you feel would resolve the issue.

    Step two: Meeting with all parties

    This is the central part of the process and is a safe environment for all parties to hear from and understand one another with the support of a conciliator or mediator.  The conciliators and mediators we work with are independent experts in the legal system and can help give independent information on ACC and identify options to solve the concerns raised.  This meeting generally lasts one and a half to two hours and can be held either in-person or virtually.

    Step three: Exploring the options

    In this step all parties will consider options to resolve the problem raised and the development of an agreement for all parties to commit to. 

    ADR can be completed at any stage during the review process, or outside of the review process.

    What types of issues can ADR assist with?

    ADR can be helpful to work through:

    • relationship or communication issues you’re having with us
    • a decision we have issued that you disagree with.

    What happens if agreement is reached during the ADR?

    If agreement is reached a Resolution Agreement will be signed off by all parties.  This is a legal document which then must be followed by both you and us.  It is important to understand that any reaching an agreement is voluntarily and no resolution will be forced upon either party.

    What happens if agreement can’t be reached?

    Sometimes an agreement can’t be reached for different reasons. If the issues relate to a decision we have made, then you can move onto a formal review process. 

    How do I request ADR?

    We encourage you to talk through your concerns with the person handling your claim.

    If that is not successful or you don’t have a contact person within ACC, we suggest you talk with a resolution specialist about whether ADR might be right for you. You can do this by contacting the Customer Resolution Team.

    Phone 0800 650 222

    Last published: 17 April 2023