Online dispute resolution (ODR) must be made mandatory to succeed, according to an independent report published by the Legal Services Board last week.

The 76-page report into international approaches to the application of technology in the legal sector pointed to the adoption of mandatory ODR in British Columbia in 2015, where the success of the scheme has encouraged courts elsewhere in Canada and the US to also promote online mediation.

The British Columbia initiative was established to help individuals and SMEs settle disputes outside of court. The service was trialled on property disputes to begin with but has since been broadened out to cover most small claims valued at up to $35,000, as well as personal injury claims up ...

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