Definition, Types, Causes and Settlement of Disputes

Dispute or in English is called dispute is a conflict or conflict that occurs between individuals or groups who have the same relationship or interest over the object of ownership, which causes legal consequences between one another.

Disputes can occur to anyone and anywhere. Disputes can be public or civil in nature and can occur both locally, nationally and internationally. Disputes can occur between individuals and individuals, between individuals and groups, between groups and groups, between companies and companies, between companies and countries, between one country and another, and so on.

Here are some definitions of disputes from several book sources:

  • According to Chomzah (2003: 14), a dispute is a conflict between two or more parties that starts from different perceptions about an interest or property rights that can have legal consequences for both.
  • According to Amriani (2012: 12), a dispute is a situation where there are parties who feel disadvantaged by other parties, who then convey this dissatisfaction to the second party. If the situation shows differences of opinion, then what happens is called a dispute.
  • According to Rahmadi (2011: 1), conflicts or disputes are situations and conditions in which people experience factual disputes or disputes that exist on their perceptions.

Types of Disputes

A dispute is a condition that is caused by two or more people who are characterized by several clear signs of disagreement. There are two types of disputes, namely as follows:

a. Interest Conflict

Interest conflicts occur when two people who have the same desire for an object that is considered valuable. A conflict of interest arises if two parties fight for one object.

b. Claims of Truth

Claim the truth on one side and assume the other party is guilty. Conflicts due to truth claims are put in terms of true or false. The argument of this claim will be based on the terminology of truth, not interests, norms and law. Conflicts of interest compromise the resolution rather than conflicts because of claims of truth.

Phases of Disputes

Disputes usually occur with the following stages:

  1. The pre-conflict stage or the complaint stage , which refers to a condition or condition that a person or group perceives as being unfair and the reasons or grounds for the feeling. Violations of that sense of justice can be real or imagined. The most important thing is that party feels that their rights have been violated or mistreated.
  2. Stage of Conflict (conflict) , marked by a situation where the party who felt his rights were violated chose the way of confrontation, throwing accusations to the violators of his rights or notifying his opponent about the complaint. At this stage both parties are aware of the disagreement between them.
  3. Dispute Stage (dispute) , can occur because the conflict escalated due to the conflict was raised in general. A dispute only occurs if the party that has the complaint has raised a dispute from the approach to something that enters the public domain. This is done intentionally and actively with the intention that there is an action regarding the desired demands.

Cause of Disputes

According to Rahmadi (2011: 8), there are six theories that cause disputes in the community, namely:


  • Altruism (Definition, Aspects and Factors Affecting)
  • Socialization (Definition, Objectives, Types, Processes and Obstacles)
  • Social Mobility (Definition, Form, Dimensions and Factors Affecting)
  • Aggressiveness (Definition, Form, Aspects and How to Control)
  • Definition, Types, Subjects and Methods of Reporting Gratuities

a. Public Relations Theory

Public relations theory, emphasizes the distrust and rivalization of groups in society. Adherents of this theory provide solutions to conflicts that arise by increasing communication and mutual understanding between groups that experience conflict, and developing tolerance so that people are more receptive to diversity in society.

b. Principle Negotiation Theory

The principle of negotiation theory explains that conflicts occur because of differences between the parties. Proponents of this theory argue that for a conflict to be resolved, the perpetrator must be able to separate his personal feelings from the problems and be able to negotiate based on interests and not in a fixed position.

c. Identity theory

This theory explains that conflicts occur because groups of people feel their identity is threatened by other parties. Adherents of identity theory suggest conflict resolution because the threatened identity is carried out through facilitation of workshops and dialogue between representatives of groups experiencing conflict with the aim of identifying the threats and worries they feel and building empathy and reconciliation. The ultimate goal is the achievement of a collective agreement that recognizes the basic identities of all parties.

d. Inter-cultural misunderstanding theory

Intercultural misunderstanding theories explain that conflicts occur because of incompatibility in communicating between people from different cultural backgrounds. For this reason, dialogue is needed between people who experience conflict to get to know and understand the culture of other communities, reducing the stereotypes they have towards other parties.

e. Transformation theory

This theory explains that conflicts can occur due to problems of inequality and injustice as well as gaps that are manifested in various aspects of community life both social, economic and political. Adherents of this theory argue that conflict resolution can be done through several efforts such as changes in structure and framework that cause inequality, improved relations, and the long-term attitude of the parties experiencing conflict, as well as the development of processes and systems to realize empowerment, justice, reconciliation and recognition of each other’s existence.

f. Theory of human needs or interests

In essence, this theory reveals that conflicts can occur because human needs or interests cannot be met / impeded or feel blocked by other people / parties. Human needs and interests can be divided into three types, namely substantive, procedural, and psychological. Substantive interests are related to human needs related to material things such as money, clothing, food, housing, and wealth. Procedural interests are related to social order, while psychological interests are related to non-material or non-material things such as appreciation and empathy.

Dispute resolution

According to Pruitt and Rubin (2004: 4), there are five ways of resolving disputes, namely:

  1. Contending (competing) , which is trying to implement a solution that is preferred by one party over the other party.
  2. Yielding (defeat) , which decreases one’s own aspirations and is willing to accept the shortcomings of what is actually desired.
  3. Problem solving (problem solving) , which is looking for satisfactory alternatives from both parties.
  4. With drawing (withdrawing) , which is choosing to leave the dispute situation, both physically and psychologically.
  5. In action (silent) , i.e. do nothing.

Meanwhile, according to Nader and Todd Jr. (1978: 9), there are seven ways of resolving disputes in society, namely:

  1. Lumpingit (let alone) , by those who feel unfair treatment, fails to pursue its demands. He makes the decision to simply ignore the problem or issues that lead to his claim and he continues his relationships with those who feel disadvantaged.
  2. Avoidance ( i.e., ie those who feel disadvantaged, choose to reduce relations with those who harm them or to completely stop the relationship, for example in a business relationship something similar can happen. By avoiding it, the problems that cause complaints are avoided.
  3. Coercion (coercion) , one party forces a solution to another party, this is unilateral. Actions that are coercive or threatening to use force, generally reduce the possibility of peaceful resolution.
  4. Negotiation (negotiations ), the two parties facing each other are the decision makers. Solving the problems faced by them both, they agreed without a third party to mix it. Both parties try to convince each other, so they make their own rules and do not solve them by starting from the existing rules.
  5. Mediation , a third party that assists both parties in a dispute to find an agreement. This third party can be determined by the two parties to the dispute, or indicated by the authorized party for it.
  6. Arbitration (Arbitration) , i.e. both parties to the dispute agree to ask an intermediary from the third party, the arbitrator and from the beginning have agreed that they will accept the decision of the arbitrator.
  7. Adjudication (justice) , namely a third party who has the authority to interfere in solving the problem, regardless of the wishes of the parties to the dispute. The third party also has the right to make a decision and enforce the decision means that the third party seeks that the decision was implemented.

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