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Alternative Dispute Resolution

Often it is preferable to resolve conflicts or disagreements outside of the court system. There are a variety of formal ways to do this. Two of the most common are mediation and arbitration. The organizations listed below may be able to help you with alternative dispute resolution. You may also want to see the section on Complaint and Advocacy.

For additional resources about alternative dispute resolution, see the topic: Mediation and alternative dispute resolution

CPLEA Suggested Resources

Not sure where to begin finding answers to your questions. Get started with our suggested resources. See additional resources below for more information.

The OmbudService for Life and Health Insurance (OLHI) is a free, fast, independent, and impartial alternative dispute resolution public service for Canadian life and health insurance consumers.

OLHI provides accurate and accessible information about life and health insurance concerns.

This includes guiding consumers through the complaints process, answering their questions, and helping them find lost policies or policies of deceased loved ones.

Related legal topic(s): Health issues

Alberta Resources

This website from Alberta Courts provides access to videos about the various Mediation programs available for the Civil (non-family) Mediation program and the Family and Child Intervention

Related legal topic(s): Family law general resources, Legal process, Mediation and alternative dispute resolution

Court and Justice Services (CJS) provides administrative support to all the courts within the province, including electronic legal information services through Alberta Law Libraries.

CJS offer: legal information services for the public on court procedures and legal services options; assistance with locating and filling out court forms; referrals to other community legal services, as well as dispute resolution services for child support, family and child medication, conflict intervention, family mediation, and civil mediation. 

Related legal topic(s): Civil actions, Legal process, Legal services, Mediation and alternative dispute resolution, Self-representation, Small claims court

This group of programs and services is offered by Alberta Justice in collaboration with the courts of Alberta. This webpage provides general information for those who are representing themselves in a family matter in either Court of King's Bench or The Provincial Court of Alberta.

This service is for people who don’t have a lawyer. Use it to:

  • prepare for court
  • navigate your family law matter through the Provincial Court
  • discuss your issues, explore your options and get you referrals
  • get a court order prepared and filed with the Court of King’s Bench and then have copies sent to the other party – after a parenting-related hearing
  • review your divorce before its submitted to the Court of King’s Bench
Related legal topic(s): Adoption, Custody and access, Divorce and separation, Family law general resources, Self-representation, Spousal support

Alberta Family Mediation Society (AFMS) advocates resolution of family conflict through the use of mediation by qualified professionals. AFMS offers a family-centered conflict resolution process in which an impartial third party (the mediator) helps the participants in negotiating a consensual, informed and fair agreement.

Related legal topic(s): Mediation and alternative dispute resolution

The Alberta Resotrative Justice Association (ARJA) is a group of organizations and individuals who practice Restorative Justice. The Association supports existing and new Restortaive Justice initiatives in Alberta.

Related legal topic(s): Mediation and alternative dispute resolution, Restorative justice

The General Insurance OmbudService (GIO) is an independent, not-for-profit corporation that has been in operation since 2002 providing dispute resolution services for conflicts between complainants and their insurers in the areas of home, auto and business insurance. GIO’s neutral and professional mediators and experienced Information Officers help complainants and insurance companies work toward a solution that is in the best interests of both parties in a fair, independent and impartial environment. (PDF - 2 pages)

Related legal topic(s): Advocacy, Business, Consumer protection and fraud, Mediation and alternative dispute resolution

The Alberta Dispute Resolution Institute of Alberta is a not for profit organization which provides education and information to its members and the general public on solving disputes more effectively. They provide an annually updated Directory of Arbitrators and Mediators in Alberta.

Related legal topic(s): Mediation and alternative dispute resolution

Catholic Social Services is a multi-function social service agency that serves people of all faiths and cultures throughout central Alberta. Founded in 1961, the agency has grown to deliver more than 100 programs.CSS is divided into Service and Program areas offered in five distinct Regions throughout central and northeast Alberta. Major Service areas include: Children, Family, and Community Service,Community Outreach and Disability Service, Immigration and Settlement Service, and Substance Abuse and Corrections Service.

Related legal topic(s): Corrections, Disabilities, Drugs and alcohol, Immigration, Mediation and alternative dispute resolution, Parole, Refugees, Reintegration

This information is written for new and long-term Calgarians, homeowners or tenants looking for more information about their responsibilities within their neighbourhood. It is a quick reference to help you get started. See also: the Good Neighbour Practices Reference Guide which is an overview of municipal bylaws governing neighbourhood issues.

Related legal topic(s): Mediation and alternative dispute resolution, Municipal information and bylaws

The Community Mediation Calgary Society (CMCS) is a non-profit organization of volunteers available to assist in resolving conflicts between neighbors and within community associations and non-profit organizations. They are a group of professional mediators who provide free, confidential and voluntary non-legal) dispute resolution service to the community.The CMCS can be contacted at (403) 269-2707.

Related legal topic(s): Mediation and alternative dispute resolution

The Better Business Bureau of Central & Northern Alberta offers a dispute resolution service to consumers and businesses that has a two-fold goal: Helping the consumer with a marketplace problem. Helping legitimate businesses correct or remove by voluntary action the source and cause of the complaint.

Related legal topic(s): Business, Consumer protection and fraud

Misunderstandings, miscommunications, and mistakes happen: your BBB’s Dispute Settlement Centre is available to help consumers and businesses resolve marketplace quarrels  when they arise. Your BBB assists companies to resolve disputes by providing mediation and arbitration services.  Unique to this BBB is our ability to provide both in-house resolution services to companies and outsource the management of dispute resolution programs for  a select group of clients, such as acting as the Arbitration Administrator for the Jurisdictional Assignment Plan of the Alberta Construction Industry.

Related legal topic(s): Business, Consumer protection and fraud

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) is available through the Edmonton Police Sservice Professional Standards Branch to address citizen complaints involving the police.The page on the EPS website provides information on the process and benefits of the service.

Related legal topic(s): Mediation and alternative dispute resolution

When you are going to court, there are some procedures and protocols that you need to follow. You will find information here on court etiquette, court procedures, and appeals and transcripts.

Related legal topic(s): Legal process, Self-representation

Judicial Dispute Resolution (JDR) is a confidential pre-trial settlement conference led by a Justice of the Court of King’s Bench. The objective of a JDR is to resolve the dispute so a trial will be either unnecessary, or at most limited to those issues on which the parties do not agree.

Related legal topic(s): Mediation and alternative dispute resolution

The Mediation and Restorative Justice Centre (MRJC) is a not-for-profit organization devoted to building safer and peaceful communities. They provide mediation services to people and groups in conflict (neightbour disputes, family situations between siblings, parents, children or other family members), and restorative justice services to victims and offenders. These services are offered free of charge to anyone in the greater Edmonton region (Alberta).

Related legal topic(s): Mediation and alternative dispute resolution, Restorative justice, Self-representation

For help in resolving disputes with neighbours you can contact the Mediation and Restorative Justice Centre for a listing of services and resources. See: MRJC – Neighbourhood Disputes –

See also:

Related legal topic(s): Municipal information and bylaws

This handbook was developed by the Edmonton based Mediation and Restorative Justice Centre. The Centre is a not-for-profit organization devoted to building safer and more peaceful communities.The handbook strives to provide you with constructive ideas for discussing these situations with your neighbour in a way that is easy for them to hear and will ensure a positive result.

Related legal topic(s): Advocacy, Mediation and alternative dispute resolution

This webpage on the Provincial Court of Alberta website provides information on alternative to going to court (mediation, and dispute resolution services), where to get help, and what you need to know when going to court.

Related legal topic(s): Self-representation