Alternatives to litigation can be used in any situation where both or all parties are willing to negotiate, or have been instructed to do so by a court. The mediation process offers personal attention and emotional satisfaction in labor and employment disputes, simplifies complex, multi-party environmental cases, assists in the negotiation of contracts, and generally results in more beneficial agreements.
So, the question becomes, when shouldn't you use ADR? There are times when ADR may not be appropriate. All aspects of a case should be considered before entering into the ADR process. In some cases, litigation is the preferred course. Litigation can provide a binding decision that sets a legal precedent. However, the primary result of litigation is monetary compensation and it often ends in a 'win' or 'lose' situation. Facilitative mediation almost always provides for a more appropriate resolution for both parties.