The Indian justice system has paired itself with undue delays, high-cost litigation and an abundance of cases put on ice. Other forms of dispute resolution have not been the traditional go-to for parties, but that has started to change for better over recent times. Based on the ease of use, requirement of resource provisions, time sensitivity and utility of the process, particular dispute resolution methods provide distinct advantages to the parties that outperform litigation.
This paper seeks to address the lack the of a mediation legislation in India, questions the Opt-in model and proposes a statute backed Opt-out model for mediation proceedings. It argues that the while the Opt-out model would not be suitable for cases that do not have elements of settlement, for example criminal matters generally, the Opt-out model can be a transformative device that rallies mediation as a successful dispute resolution method, in limited specified civil and commercial disputes, and achieve efficient outcome enforcement through the backing of a statute. Mandatory pre-litigation mediation for suitable cases can also prove to be a champion in reducing the litigation burden on civil courts.