Alternative dispute resolution (ADR)

[Warsaw, 06.06.2006] There is a general opinion that court litigation in Poland is long-lasting and often ineffective.

Therefore, one should note alternative techniques of dispute resolution, such as mediation, mediation procedure and arbitration:

  • [mediation] pursuant to Article 1831 § 2 of the Polish Code of Civil Procedure, mediation is carried out on the basis of an agreement on mediation or a decision of the court referring the parties for mediation. The agreement may also be entered into through the other party’s consent to mediation. Mediation is carried out prior to instituting court litigation and, upon consent of the parties, also during court litigation;
  • [settlement] civil law cases whose nature permits so may be regulated under a settlement entered into prior to filing a statement of claim. The court will classify a settlement as inadmissible if its content is inconsistent with the principles of social co-existence or is aimed at circumventing the law. An application for calling upon the parties to enter into a settlement, irrespective of the dispute subject, may be filed with a district court generally competent for the opponent. The application should briefly describe the case;
  • [arbitration] the third and most frequently applied method of dispute resolution is arbitration conducted on the basis of an arbitration clause. Unless any special regulation provides otherwise, the parties may submit any financial or non-financial disputes (which may be the subject of a court settlement) for settlement in arbitration, except for alimony cases (Article 1157 of the Code of Civil Procedure). The submission of a dispute for arbitration requires an agreement of the parties specifying the subject of the dispute or legal relationship triggering the dispute (Article 1161 § 1 of the Code of Civil Procedure).

A precise determination of the possibility to apply alternative dispute resolution methods in a specific case requires careful analysis of the facts in light of Polish law.

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