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Businesses taking a dispute to State Supreme Court in Erie County now can choose to appear before a mediator instead of a judge.
The mediation option can be less expensive and time consuming, and issues can be resolved without the adversarial nature of a traditional trial, supporters say.
It is just one of the options offered in the Eighth Judicial District's Alternative Dispute Resolution program, which began about four years ago by Justice Vincent Doyle, administrative judge. Most any case going before the state Supreme Court here also can try arbitration, an evaluation of the case by a neutral lawyer or evaluation by a six-person jury before going to …