India Must Encourage Use Of Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) Now

Online Dispute Resolution

Online dispute resolution (ODR) is the technology counterpart of traditional alternative dispute resolution (ADR) mechanism. In traditional ADR methods arbitration, mediation and conciliation are used to settle the disputes outside the court. But of late even ADR has become a troublesome process. The shortcomings of ADR are that it is expensive, time consuming and lacks a finality in many cases. Despite the granting of awards by the Arbitrators, matters are dragged to the courts and this further increases the cases for the already overburdened courts.

Most of the problems associated with the ADR can be resolved by using ODR. For instance, use of ODR is not only instantaneous, cost efficient but even can be managed within a period of 6 to 12 months. However, the best advantage of ODR is that it can be used by the stakeholders even if they are residing in different parts of the world. They need not to travel to the venue of Arbitration as the same is an online portal that can be accessed from the comfort of homes of the parties. Also documentation is more effectively managed in ODR as all documents are in electronic form that can be preserved for a longer duration and in a better quality. They can be easily accessed by the stakeholders and can be transferred from one jurisdiction to another within a minute time.

Clearly ODR has many advantages that our traditional ADR lacks. However, implementing a sound and user friendly ODR portal is a big challenge. We not only need skilled and techno legal expert Arbitrators to handle complicated cases of Artificial Intelligence, Cyber Law, Cyber Security, Internet of Things, etc but we also need Arbitrators who can comfortably work upon different platforms and technologies. This is the reason why ODR has not been successful so far in not only India but even in developed nations.

We at PTLB Projects LLP decided to change this scenario for India and to make India a global hub for Techno Legal Services. PTLB Projects is managing few ODR Projects that can be used by Indian Government and various stakeholders. We decided to solve four complicated problems that are responsible for non use of ODR in India. First, we needed an online platform that can be used by various stakeholders for ODR purposes. So we launched the ODR Portal for all stakeholders that can be easily used by global stakeholders. Secondly, we needed Techno Legal Experts to manage the ODR portal and since we have more than 15 years of experience in Techno Legal fields, even this problem has been solved. Third, we need to spread awareness about ODR in India and ensure that stakeholders are suitably trained in this regard. So we launched a pro bono portal for ODR where stakeholders have been taking our ODR services free of cost. We have already helped in resolving many online disputes using our pro bono ODR portal. At the same time, we have launched a dedicated ODR Training Portal so that techno legal ODR training can be provided to various stakeholders. This training would be managed by the Virtual Campus of PTLB where online skills development in various Techno Legal fields is provided. We even outlined the entire process of using our ODR portal that hardly takes 2 minutes to use. So public awareness and training aspects have also been taken care of. Fourthly, we have arranged for a system through our TeleLaw  Project where everything from the drafting of an Agreement carrying our ODR Clause to the final and conclusive disposal of a dispute would be taken care of. In other words, you can safely and comfortably concentrate upon your business and ventures while we take care of all your potential future disputes from scratch to the end.

Also we believe that a Public Private Partnership (PPP) model is required to make ODR popular among Government departments and offices. That needs a higher level of research and development, interaction, networking, etc. That is why we have launched world’s first Techno Legal Centre Of Excellence For Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) In India (TLCEODRI). It would prove to be the crucial initiative that would put India on the map of global ODR services. The TLCEODRI is also planning for a global expansion and very soon we would disclose the names and details of our global partners in this regard.

Recently Indian Government took a major decision to improve ADR and ODR environment of India by encouraging institutional arbitration in India. It enacted the The New Delhi International Arbitration Centre Act, 2019 (Pdf). That is a very crucial step to make India a global hub for institutional arbitration. We at PTLB Projects wish to take it another step ahead. We are working to make India a Global Hub for Techno Legal and ODR Services. Now we have both regulatory framework and an implementable model for ODR in India. We at PTLB Projects and Perry4Law Organisation (P4LO) request Indian Government to collectively work in this direction.

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