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Introduction: ODR in Foreign Countries
ODR is used in many other countries. This page will examine some of the most prevalent international uses of ODR.
EU Directive on Alternative Dispute Resolution for Consumer Disputes
It is required for all EU member states to implement ODR systems for resolving consumer complaints. There are six quality criteria: expertise (along with independence and impartiality), transparency (posting results and reports), effectiveness (using ADR norms), fairness (alerting parties of their rights and consequences of participating in ADR procedure), liberty (preserving consumers’ knowing consent to binding ADR), and legality (providing equal or greater consumer protection). This system, implemented on July 9, 2015, has great promise for expanding consumers' access to justice in e-commerce disputes.
EU Online Dispute Resolution Video
This video explains the ODR process in the EU.
England and Wales and the Traffic Penalty Tribunal (TPT)
The TPT allows users to appeal tickets, upload evidence, and follow case and hearings under one account. Police and prosecutors have a dashboard to show current cases, enabling them to submit evidence, comment, and follow progress of hearings and decisions. Those charged can then comment on evidence, request their preferred hearing type, and follow progress of the case through to the decision.
Austrian Internet Ombudsman
This ODR service is available to consumers residing in Austria for complaints related to a transaction conducted on the internet with a seller registered in the EU.
This Dutch service is particularly broad: it covers not only consumer issues, but also other types of disputes, such as family, tenancy, and employment cases. It provides legal advice to the parties by adopting an integrative approach: the website asks the users a series of questions, aimed at identifying areas of agreement between the parties and triggering constructive dialogue. Rather than offering a fully informed solution, the website works as a source of support and information for the parties, improving communication, and encouraging the formation of an agreement.
HM Online Court (HMOC)
HMOC is a proposed idea in the United Kingdom. At the first stage, the HMOC would help users to evaluate their problems and understand the available options. The first stage would be free of charge and its purpose would be to prevent the dispute from escalating further by providing the parties with reliable legal information concerning their entitlements. At the second stage, an online facilitation would be attempted: mediation and other ADR techniques would be employed to encourage an agreement between the parties. If no agreement can be found, an adjudicative procedure would be conducted at stage three by members of the Judiciary (online judges). The decisions of the online judge would be binding and enforceable, like traditional court judgments. Both the second and third stage of the HMOC procedure would entail a court fee.
Concilianet is a free ODR platform designed to resolve business to consumer disputes between merchants and their customers. Concilianet reduced the time for resolving disputes by 50% and has led to settlements in almost 96% of cases filed through its platform. Concilianet welcomes disputes against all merchants, regardless of whether they are registered with Concilianet. It provides added consumer protection through its monitoring and court-associated personnel. However, the only remedy available through Concilianet is an order for merchants' contract compliance; consumers seeking monetary damages must resort to judicial action or other traditional claims processes.
Canadian Civil Resolution Tribunal (CRT)
CRT is Canada’s first online tribunal for resolving strata and small claims disputes. Early next year, it will begin to accept small claims disputes as well. CRT encourages a collaborative, problem-solving approach to dispute resolution, rather than the traditional courtroom model. CRT provides legal information, self-help tools, and dispute resolution services to help solve the problem, as early as possible. CRT makes a decision only when the participants can’t agree to a solution.