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The ADR and ODR at Equa.Law

Time and money are the two most important assets of a person, isn’t it? It is true that in recent years, the Indian judiciary has seen a massive rise in the number of cases and dependency. This has created a burden on the Indian judicial system and has affected its efficiency negatively.

The Indian legal system is generally criticized for its time-consuming and expensive methods of justice redressal. In such times, Alternate dispute resolution emerged as a savior. It grew throughout India because it promotes party autonomy, is an effective method, and focuses on dispensing speedy Justice. The aim of bringing in ADR was to reduce the entry of disputes into the courts.

As per the Economic Times, over 4.70 crore cases are pending in various high courts, including 70,154 in the Supreme Court. As of March 21, 58,94,060 cases are pending in High Courts together. Don’t you think these figures are astonishing? The alternative dispute resolution system crafted as Equa overcomes the above-mentioned challenges and problems.

During the pandemic, digitalization paved its way throughout industries. Then non-functioning of the courts not only led to delay injustice but also hampered the Indian economy. Therefore, a transformation took place where even during the lockdown access to courts, e-filing, and virtual hearings were conducted. And this gave rise to the popularity of online dispute resolution.

Well, ODR was a system that showed its significance in the 1990s. Still, Covid helped in its implementation formation of the courts was a project planned to be implemented in 2007 by the Information and Communication Technology with the motive of the setting tribunals, and special courts and giving primary importance to the ADR mechanism. But due to the absence of coherence, uniformity, capacity, and independence, there was a delay in its implementation. The speed, storage, capacity, accuracy, reliability, less post, and fairness are the main advantages of the technology that has popularized ICT use for the dispute resolution system.

Scope of ADR in today's times
In the current scenario of the 21st century, the societies are increasingly getting transformed into knowledge societies and their inhabitancy of knowledge networking and are more acquitted with the events happing locally or globally. The action of the netizens is based on the strong bases of knowledge which is universal, objectives, timely, and accumulated from various sources of information. The way people interact and communicate with each other all over the world has changed drastically due to globalization and e-resolution. It has given birth to the new kinds of disputes which can only be resolved in the environment which has given them birth, i.e., cyberspace.

The procedure to use the website, detailed rules, claim and response forms, deadlines, steps, and relevant documents have been drafted by the Equa. The full information of the users/litigants will be shared in a secure online environment.

In India, we have the Arbitration Conciliation Act, 1996 which describes the procedure for arbitration. The process started with the existence of an arbitration agreement and enter by enforcement and execution aboard. The objective here still prevails to be a speedy resolution of the dispute and giving the party the autonomy to decide upon various matters.

Another ADR mechanism Is mediation where parties come up with a resolution to resolve the dispute by themselves. The mediator oversees the mediation process and paved a way for communication. this is also one of the most used alternative dispute resolution methods that promote the timely settlement of disputes. The ADR Cases have been increasing massively over the past decade and in the coming years, mediation will be at Bloom. It would be a win-win situation to either go for arbitration or mediation, as both these methods are time-saving and cost-cutting. But, The Act, of 1996 has not been able to achieve its objective due to various reasons which can be dealt with the Equa by using artificial intelligence and blockchain technology.

To bring mediation the out front, the Supreme Court had set up Mediation and Conciliation Project Committee in 2005 with the motive of increasing mediation. Since then, it has been providing training and creating awareness among people. Most of the laws provide provisions to opt for mediation before proceeding in a court of law. The Consumer Protection Act, 2019, The Companies Act, 2013, The Family Court Act, 1984, Commercial Coats Act, 2015 all of these promote mediation before bringing the cases. Moreover, India 2019 ratified the Singapore convention on mediation. The convention comes up with a framework for settlement agreements through mediation for commercial disputes

ODR Mechanism in India
ODR can be helpful to resolve domestic-level disputes. The traditional methods of dispute resolution have become outdated in the present age of information and communication technology. India with its huge population has ample scope for the use of ODR. Due to the increased use of information and communication technology and the internet, the need for online dispute resolution has increased.

The ODR methods will make traditional systems speedier and more efficient. The ODR mechanism can be applied to public sector disputes, private sector disputes, and cyberspace disputes. In public sector disputes, ODR facilitates the redressal of Judicial and quasi-Judicial disputes. Online dispute resolution is ADR held online that aims to increase access to justice. Consumer disputes, insurance claims, intellectual property matters, family disputes, e-commerce, small cause, and small claim disputes, and disputes involving small-medium enterprises can all be dealt with through online dispute resolution. The disputes relating to cyberspace include social media disputes, domain name disputes, and E-commerce disputes which can be resolved by the application of ODR.

When it comes to ODR, it is a revolutionary new and introduced technology in the Indian legal system that is gaining a lot of attention. Following the passage of the Information Technology Act of 2000, e-commerce and e-government gained lawful recognition in India. There have been disputes related to online transactions as a result of e-commerce, and ODR can be considered the best method for resolving them. E-resolution is one of the organizations accredited by Internet Corporation for assigned names and numbers and the e-resolution system is the first of its kind to have offered the redressal procedure completely online.

There are certain Shortcomings of online dispute resolution, there is a digital gap among people. Therefore, it is needed to be reduced by providing proper literacy to people and giving them access to the Digital infrastructure.

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