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Cover A Practical Approach to Alternative Dispute Resolution

23. Recording Settlement  

This chapter explores the process of recording a settlement, which is the final part of the alternative dispute resolution (ADR) process. It is essential that all the issues between the parties are covered in a settlement agreement. If particular issues are deliberately left out of the agreement, or are left for further agreement, this should be made clear. The normal rules of contract law must also be adhered to, or the settlement will not be binding. While oral agreements are usually binding, the risk of misunderstandings means that it is invariably best practice to record the agreement in writing. The chapter then looks at the different methods of recording settlement agreements, including exchange of letters, contract or deed, interim order, consent order, and Tomlin order. Ultimately, when drawing up the agreement, it is important not to overlook how any existing proceedings are to be dealt with and on how the costs are to be paid.