A procedure by which parties agree to submit their dispute(s) to a neutral third party, known as an arbitrator. The arbitrator considers arguments and evidence from all sides, then renders a written final and binding decision. The parties may mutually agree upon the rules and procedures, such as CCP 1280 et seq., the JW Commercial Arbitration Rules or any other reputable provider to govern the arbitration proceedings. The parties may also choose to agree to high/low figures to bracket the award. If the decision falls outside the brackets, each bracket is the minimum or maximum that gets awarded. If the decision falls between the brackets, the value of the decision is awarded as is.
A type of arbitration where the arbitrator makes a determination of the rights of the parties to the dispute, but this determination is not binding upon them, and not enforceable in a court of law. The "award" is in effect an advisory opinion of the arbitrator's view of the respective merits of the party's case. Many times the parties agree to this format and utilize it in connection with attempts to reach a negotiated settlement.
A hybrid of a binding hearing and is sometimes referred to as an "either/or" arbitration, it has two popular forms "Night" or "Day" baseball. In each method, the parties submit their last best offer and demand to the Arbitrator. In "Day" baseball, the Arbitrator is aware of the numbers and chooses the figure deemed most appropriate. In "Night" baseball, the figures are kept confidential from the arbitrator. Upon rendering of the decision, the figure mathematically closest to the arbitrator's award becomes the binding award. This format is best suited when the parties feel strongly about the reasonableness of their offer/demand.