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Alternative Dispute Resolution
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June 14, 2013 - FERCís Dispute Resolution Service to Join Office of Administrative Law Judges News Release
 
May 20, 2013 - FERC staff issues the Spring 2013 ADR Newsletter PDF
 

Overview
When parties are involved in a conflict, they may initially attempt to resolve the matter themselves. If they are unable to do so, the traditional dispute resolution process is to engage in litigation. Thus, they turn the problem over to a judge to decide who is right, who is wrong (i.e., who has the better position). However, alternative dispute resolution (ADR) offers a variety of methods to resolve the matter though settlement instead of litigation. It is a voluntary process where parties, with the aid of a third party neutral, focus on achieving a mutually satisfactory solution rather than on determinating who has the stronger position. ADR usually involves a third party neutral who helps the parties design a process that they believe will aid them in finding mutually acceptable solutions to their disputes.

At FERC, the following groups assist parties with ADR:

  1. Dispute Resolution Division
    The Dispute Resolution Division (DRD) is a small service-oriented team that promotes timely and high quality resolutions of disputes through consensual decision-making.

    The DRD has two major functions:

    • To provide services such as mediation and facilitation in disputes involving entities subject to the Commission's jurisdiction. All communications with DRD representatives are privileged and confidential, unless otherwise agreed. DRD staff is not involved in the Commission's decisional processes, and does not advocate positions or conduct investigations.

    • To promote the use of ADR both within and outside of the Commission through activities such as consultation, workshops, collaboration, training, and coaching.

    • To learn more about ADR or begin an ADR process, please contact a Dispute Resolution Specialist listed under "Contact Information" module on the right side of the page.

    Learn more about Dispute Resolution Division


  2. Administrative Law Judges and FERC Trial Staff
    Under the Commission's rules, Administrative Law Judges (ALJ) can serve as settlement judges and can conduct settlement negotiations, mediation, facilitation, and arbitration, as well as evaluate and certify settlements.

    FERC Trial Staff also plays a major role in helping parties to resolve disputes and settle cases. This assistance is primarily achieved through the use of early neutral evaluation techniques.

    To learn more please visit our Office of OALJDR and Trial Staff Assignments and Procedural Information sections.

    Visit our Settlements section to view examples of ALJ and FERC Trial Staff work.

  3. Enforcement Hotline
    The Enforcement Hotline invites market participants and the general public to call, email or write the Hotline to complain or report market activities or transactions that may be an abuse of market power, an abuse of an affiliate relationship, a tariff violation, or another possible violation by a FERC regulated entity.

    See a detailed description of the Enforcement Hotline



CONTACT
Toll Free Helpline and Landowners Complaints
Toll-free: 1-877-337-2237
FAX: 202-219-2730
Email: ferc.adr@ferc.gov

ADR Comments

Deborah Osborne, Director
Telephone: 202-502-8831
Email: deborah.osborne@ferc.gov

Dispute Resolution Specialists:

Joshua Hurwitz
Telephone: 202-502-6668
Email: joshua.hurwitz@ferc.gov

Rebeccah Ratner
Telephone: 202-502-6654
Email: rebeccah.ratner@ferc.gov

Sara Klynsma, Program Assistant
Telephone: 202-502-8259
Email: sara.klynsma@ferc.gov

 
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Updated: February 25, 2014