Alternative dispute resolution

Queensland Courts encourages parties to use alternative dispute resolution (ADR) methods to resolve their disputes and reach agreement themselves. This allows them to avoid the expense, time and conflict of a trial.

You can organise your own private dispute resolution or use the ADR process available for civil cases in the Supreme and District Courts. Mediation is also available in the Magistrates Court.

Case appraisal and mediation are the two main types of ADR through Queensland Courts.

While an independent third party can help you resolve disputes through ADR, you still have the right to go to a trial if the dispute doesn’t settle.

Important notes

  • It is important that you stay informed about how Queensland Courts are managing courthouse attendance during the COVID-19 response.
  • If your dispute relates to domestic and family violence, please see our section on this particular issue, including support services and protection orders.
  • If you’re going the Planning and Environment Court, they have their own ADR processes and dedicated mediators. Read about ADR through the P and E Court.

Settling disputes out of court

Your mediation and facilitation options before you reach court, and Dispute Resolution Centres

Arranging ADR through the courts

How to arrange for consent and apply for a referring order if you can’t get consent

Case appraisal

How case appraisal works, how the decision is enforced and what to do if you disagree


How mediation works, the role of the mediator, how an agreement is enforced and what to do if you disagree


A list of forms you may need as part of your ADR process

Filing ADR documents

Where to file documents relating to your ADR process