781.708.4445

info@levinedisputeresolution.com

Divorce Mediation Blog

Arbitration Where Life Imitates Sport: Part 2

Friday, September 14, 2012

In Part 1, we briefly described baseball arbitration and it origins. Now, we discuss how this methodology may apply to family and probate law cases.

In every probate and family financial case, one party is seeking something that the other party also wants, whether it be a specific piece of property or a dollar sum. Sometimes this desire is expressed as a percentage of a probate or marital estate, or income in the case of support.

When parties try cases, they tend to work from the extremities because they anticipate that the judge or arbitrator might “split the difference”, so a party reasons, “why not stretch the range in my direction? If I ask for more than I really want, I may get what I need”. When both parties do the same, settlement chances diminish and the chance of a windfall/stinging loss increase. Baseball arbitration urges both parties towards to middle, so as to cut the risk of the other side’s proposal being deemed the more reasonable.

The applications of baseball arbitration in the probate and family law contexts may include a dispute over a percentage share of the estate. In divorce, a case that is not a clear cut case for 50-50, parties may be more inclined to stay within a more modest range of disparity such as 60-40, to avoid the risk of losing at a more extreme percentage, if the arbitrator concludes that the spouse has over- reached. In business or other property valuation, wild highs and lows are discouraged. The same principles will apply to probate estates.

In a support matters, the support payor may well offer more to avoid the chance of the baseball arbitrator picking the over-the-top request of the payee, but since the same forces are at work, the support recipient is likely to curb his or her demands for the same reason.

The results: the parties are closer together before trial, so the chances of settlement are enhanced; and the arbitrator is more likely to choose a result that is closer to the range with which both parties can live, and reducing the potential for windfalls/calamitous results. But, there are drawbacks, and we will discuss them in our next entry.



Get e-mail notifications of new blog posts! Enter email address below.:



Delivered by FeedBurner

other articles


recent posts


tags

LDRC family and probate law disputes conciliation Divorce Agreements facilitated negotiations SJC med/arb alimony orders MLB labor agreement self-adjusting alimony high-risk methodology family law arbitrator med-arb divorce mediations Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly mediations separation divorce and family law mediators health coverage Massachusetts lawyers divorce lawyers Massachusetts divorce lawyers Boston Uniform Arbitration Act arbitration divorce arbitrator Divorce divorce arbitration Family Law Arbitration rehabilitative alimony COLA The Seven Sins of Alimony IRC §2704 disputes Levine Dispute Resolution Center LLC family support Chouteau Levine how baseball arbitration works divorce process medical benefits divorce mediator Defense of Marriage Act lawyer divorce mediation Massachusetts Alimony Reform Act family mediation Levine Dispute Resolution Center General term alimony alimony dispute resolution Levine Dispute Resolutions fraud special master child support Obamacare lawyer-attended mediation health insurance divorce arbitrators alimony statute divorce and family law divorce litigation Massachusetts divorce mediators Alimony Reform Act Major League Baseball Arbitration arbitrator Baseball Arbitration family law Matrimonial Arbitration divorce agreement mediators Levine Dispute Resolution Twinkies divorce judgment divorce mediators Massachusetts alimony alimony reform legislation private dispute resolution mediation litigation Same Sex Marriage family law mediation Child Support Guidelines alimony law Baseball Players support orders pre-ARA alimony lawyers family law arbitrators annulment divorced resolve disputes arbitrators Cohabitation Baseball DOMA traditional negotiations Massachusetts alimony and child support mediator Massachusetts Self-adjusting alimony orders