Across the country, a system called online dispute resolution (ODR) is taking hold within municipal and county court systems.
ODR is helping individuals resolve legal troubles without having to set foot in the courtroom. So far, it’s being used in small claims court — settling arguments between neighbors over fences, or helping with debt collection issues, among other things — as well in some divorce cases.
The concept behind it is simple: A back and forth online negotiation replaces the need to appear in court, easing the load for overburdened court systems while helping residents get equitable access to justice. This removes the need to take time off work, hire a lawyer or physically spend time in a government building....
ODR...is now being used by more than 50 jurisdictions throughout the 50 states.