Is Arbitration a Good Alternative

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Active Member
20 November 2019
Hi all,
I have been in property settlement dispute with my estranged husband for nearly two years now. He is claiming a 60/40 split in his favour based on earning capacity and future needs. I am trying for an equitable 50/50 settlement.

We went to court in December 2019 for a mention (please correct me if that's wrong) where the judge told us to go into the lobby and broker a deal. That didn't happen as the other side refuse to negotiate. Our case was then adjourned to September 2021.

Around six weeks ago my solicitor contacted me to advise we had been asked if we would consider settling the matter via arbitration.

Now there are two things here :

- Firstly, it has taken my solicitor 6 weeks to respond to my 4 emails and 2 phone calls on the matter. I wanted his guidance on if this was a better option for me - I got a "sitting on the fence", non-committal response which gave me very little direction.

- Secondly, is arbitration a better option and a little less formal than court?

I am thinking I could represent myself which would not only save me lots of $'s but also give me back control of my own fate.

Can I get some advice please.



Well-Known Member
27 September 2015
how much $ have you blown on this vs how much equity is there?
Have you offered 55/45?
My advice is always to avoid solicitors to the last minute. Not good advice for you now because you're kinda at the last minute. But sure, go to mediation (i think that is what you mean) without solicitor. Offer 55/45 and walk away if it isn't accepted.

BTW 50/50 is equal. But it might not be fair. There are a range of circumstances and both earning capacity and future need are reasonable consideration if they can be substantiated.


Active Member
20 November 2019
Thanks Sammy - the pool is around $1.3M and yes I have made numerous offers around between 50/50 and 55/45, some that were not even acknowledged. So far, I am in for about $25K and I am sure the OP would be higher than that.

I totally agree, in hindsight, retaining solicitors was the worst thing we could have done but the OP was not open to mediation.

I have tried to walk away, but being in my mid 50's the financial blow is something I probably will not recover from in this lifetime. Certainly understand the rationale of fair and equitable but it's a two way street.

Anyway, I could go on for days regarding the unfairness of the system but it doesn't solve my issue.

In your experience is arbitration a good option for settling as opposed to court and is this something that I could handle myself? My hope is the process is a little less formal taking away the intimidation of a courtroom setting, but will still realise a final result so both parties can move forward.