There are many advantages to choosing either arbitration or mediation over litigation. However, this does not mean that litigation does not have its place.
Even though the general advice is to avoid litigation if at all possible, there are certain times when litigation is the best option. According to FindLaw, choosing litigation may be smart if you worry fairness might be negatively affected by out-of-courtroom procedures.
How can litigation help keep things fair?
Even though the court process can be onerous, most of it is in place to ensure that the proceedings are as fair as possible. If you choose either arbitration or mediation, taking the courtroom formality out of it may also remove a level of fairness.
Essentially, if one party is a far squeakier wheel than the other, it is possible that the louder, more forceful party will benefit more from out-of-courtroom procedures. While a trained mediator may attempt to keep things fair outside of a courtroom and ensure that all sides speak equally, there is only so much power and control they have.
In terms of arbitration, remember that there is no formal presentation of evidence. This means that you have to rely solely on the expertise of the arbitrator during the process. Plus, since arbitration is usually binding, it is much more difficult to protest the result of arbitration as compared to average litigation.
In what other circumstances should I choose litigation?
Generally, mediation is non-binding. This means that if both parties are not happy with the results of mediation, you may end up litigating anyhow. If you believe that mediation will bear no fruit, You may wish to skip mediation and go straight to the courtroom.