The Environment Disputes Resolution System provides a more accessible alternative dispute resolution procedure to the traditional legal system. Any dispute regarding the environment can be submitted to professionals who can make decisions on the dispute, settling environmental strife rapidly, fairly and efficiently.
Ordinance Amendment and Formation of Committee
The Seoul Metropolitan Government established the Environmental Dispute Adjustment Committee pursuant to the relevant ordinance which was enacted in 1991 and amended in 2008.
Environmental Dispute Adjustment Committee
The aforementioned Committee is composed of one chairperson who is vice mayor of Seoul and 15 other members who are environment experts, legal professionals or professors. The Committee makes decisions for parties in dispute and can manage up to KRW 10 billion of arbitration awards.
Affordable Assistance by Professionals
The services provided by the Committee help the parties in dispute prove their case with relatively lower cost and simpler procedure compared to resorting to courts.
Solutions Tailored to Cases
There are three methods for dispute settlement: good offices, mediation and adjudication. Those in dispute can choose the most suitable option for their case. The good offices method is where the third party offers “good offices” to the conflicting party towards peaceful settlement of the dispute. This is settlement method for a relatively simple case. The parties in dispute may opt for mediation if the first method does not work, which involves mediator who conducts negotiations between the contending parties. Finally, the last option adjudication is chosen when a party wishes to request compensation for damages.
Online Application System
The number of dispute resolution cases regarding the environment has gradually risen in the past 10 years, reflecting the growing public awareness on environmental issues. To offer the most effective dispute resolution alternatives, Seoul opened an online application system for dispute resolution cases in 2012. Any individual or entity that wishes to resolve environmental disputes outside court can apply via this convenient online system.
Thanks to the online system, the number of application in 2013 doubled from the previous year, proving expanded accessibility.