What is alternative dispute resolution in a child protection case?

3. Sign an agreement to take part in ADR

The ADR facilitator prepares an agreement that includes details such as:

  • the issues you agree to try to solve in ADR
  • the name of your facilitator
  • that the process is confidential
  • how you, CAS, the facilitator, or anyone else involved in ADR can end the process if you haven't resolved your issues

Before signing the agreement:

  • Read it carefully.
  • Make sure that it includes all the important details about the process.
  • Ask any questions you have.
  • Make sure that you understand it.

You should pay attention to how you or CAS can end the agreement, and what happens if you don't follow the agreement.

Closed process

Child protection ADR is always closed. This means that what happens at your meetings is private or confidential.

No one can repeat what is said during ADR in court or in court documents, except in rare situations. An example of a rare situation is if the information raised serious concerns about the safety of a child or another person. 

This means that a facilitator's notes usually can't be used in court and they can't be asked to be a to talk about what happened at ADR. No one can talk in court about what was said in ADR, or use any documents or notes from ADR in your court case. 

It's usually fine to talk with your family or close friends about what happened in ADR, as long as they understand that the information is private.

The only information that can be shared with the court is if you reached a settlement or not, and what it says if you did.

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