Frequently Asked Questions
Is New Era ADR an independent and neutral organization?
Yes. While New Era has investors and advisors, no outside individual or organization has a controlling interest in New Era ADR. Individual customer organizations may subscribe to New Era’s services, and the accompanying subscription fees are a source of revenue for New Era, but the subscription revenue is used to offset and significantly reduce the individual case fees for any party involved in litigation against the subscriber organization. These customer subscriptions do not create any ownership interest in New Era ADR nor do they give subscribers any right to any preferential treatment over any parties opposing them in litigation on New Era. Additionally, all neutrals who preside over cases on New Era ADR are independent contractors, and therefore, not employees of New Era ADR.
How can you have litigation outside of court?
There is no requirement in the Constitution, statute, or other written law that says you must resolve disputes in court. There are both federal and state courts with varying levels of jurisdiction, but you do not have to use them.
How are you different from going to court and traditional arbitration?
First, we’re digital-native and fully virtual. Everything we do is online. There is no need for in-person hearings or paper submissions. No travel, no courtrooms, no additional expenses. Second, Courts have been around for hundreds of years. During those centuries they have created processes and procedures that have evolved and grown exponentially. There now exists so much process and procedure built into the system, that the focus of litigation often becomes nuanced fighting over procedural issues that don’t get you to an end result. We firmly believe that the facts and storytelling should be the focus of the litigation process and so we’ve eliminated all the unnecessary process and procedure, limiting it to only what is necessary to ensure fairness. Tell your story. Get a decision. Get back to growth. That is our focus.
How are you different from using a traditional arbitration forum?
Again, the first point is that we are 100% digital. Although the traditional arbitration forums have begun to migrate some of their offerings to online settings as a result of the pandemic, they are still largely meant to be in-person proceedings, just like court. New Era was created as a technology company first, with all of our resources devoted to creating the best online user experience possible, which means our digital products will always outperform the traditional arbitration forums.
Second, traditional arbitration forums have been around for decades and in that time, like courts, their processes and procedures have evolved and grown exponentially. In fact, any seasoned attorney will likely tell you that going through a traditional arbitration process is in fact no easier, cheaper, or faster than going to court, and most of the time is spent fighting over nuanced procedural rules. New Era trims the fat and streamlines the entire process, dramatically reducing the time and cost spent on any given dispute.
Do you only help resolve actual litigation or do you handle disputes that aren’t yet lawsuits?
Am I foregoing any of my rights if I use New Era?
No. The most basic tenet of Due Process is that you have an opportunity to be heard before an adverse action is taken against you. In many ways, New Era provides you a greater opportunity to be heard because our focus is on getting the litigants and their attorneys to tell our neutrals their story and not on the process and procedure that can often inhibit the simple telling of facts.
How legally enforceable is a decision from the New Era process?
All of our decisions are enforceable in courts of law. In other words, once you receive a decision from New Era, both parties will be expected to adhere to its terms. But even if one party chooses not to, the other party can file a simple action in court to enforce the decision. Courts strongly support alternative dispute resolution decisions because they lighten court dockets and encourage litigants to think of other ways to resolve disputes.
Do I need an attorney to use New Era?
You do not need an attorney to use New Era. Our platforms are defined by their simplicity and ease of use. That said, a good attorney can help you sift through and collate the most pertinent information in your case. They can assist you greatly in telling your story in the most effective and persuasive way. So while New Era does not require the use of an attorney, we would always recommend one. Besides, because our process is digital and efficient, your attorneys’ fees will likely be substantially less than they would be in ordinary litigation or arbitration.
Do both, or all, parties have to agree to use New Era?
Yes. Alternative dispute resolution is a creature of contract. In other words, all the parties have to agree that an alternative forum is better than going through a more traditional litigation process. But this can happen in a lot of different ways. For example, if you have click-through terms and conditions or standard contract provisions that include dispute resolution clauses, you can insert our language found on the site, and any time a party signs your agreement or agrees to your terms and conditions, they are agreeing to use New Era as the forum for any disputes. Also, if you have an existing dispute, both parties can simply agree to bring the dispute to New Era as a one-off. We are more than happy to help parties resolve disputes, no matter how they come to us. But all the parties to the dispute do have to agree. You cannot unilaterally compel parties to use New Era.
Who does New Era use to resolve these disputes?
New Era also has a relationship with the several trade associations including the National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals (NADN), providing access to over 1000 of the top mediators and arbitrators spread out across the country. These neutrals have as much experience, if not more, than any in the country.
Is there any cap on damages or what can be awarded?
No. We don’t believe that digital litigation and digital alternative dispute resolution are only applicable to small claims or relatively inconsequential disputes. To the contrary, we believe the majority of disputes can be resolved in a digital forum. So there is no cap on damages or what type of relief can be awarded by the neutrals on the New Era platform. Our goal is to resolve as many disputes as possible and get people back to the things that matter.
What types of products does New Era offer?
New Era’s offers an E-Arbitration solution, which is the legally-binding decision that is most similar to going to court, although again, with a very streamlined and 100% digital process.
We also offer a Virtual Mediation Wizard, which is a fully-integrated online product that takes parties who want to try and mediate their dispute from start to finish, all on one platform, using one of our experienced neutrals as a mediator. From document submission, scheduling, settlement, and the mediation itself, everything is under one roof.
Finally, we offer a Binding Mediation product, which is a sort of hybrid of the first two. In Binding Mediation, the parties move through the Virtual Mediation Wizard in an attempt to settle their dispute as normal, but they have also already agreed that if a settlement is not reached, their case will convert to binding arbitration using the same neutral. Each party has one more opportunity to make their final arguments and then a decision is reached. The purpose of a Binding Mediation is to try and settle, but if that is not possible, then at least the parties can be assured that the dispute will be final and done regardless, with each party having plenty of opportunity to have their case heard in front of an experienced neutral.