Winning in California Mandatory Attorney-Client Fee Arbitration

According to a study by Steele and Nimmer, the top two concerns that clients have about their attorneys are that fees are too high, and that performance is delayed.  Perhaps because of this, the California Legislature passed laws in 1978 requiring that the State Bar establish a fee arbitration program. It may also establish a …

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Making The Most Of Appellate Mediation Opportunities

Appellate Mediation

I’ve been doing appellate mediation since the program began, and I’ve been genuinely surprised by the success rate. At the program’s inception, I anticipated a significantly lower success rate than I’ve had with non-appellate mediations — but it’s about 70%, which isn’t much lower than my rate for other matters. While my approach to conducting …

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Disadvantages of Arbitration

Arbitration is often touted as a fantastic alternative to litigation, and many times it is. However, there are disadvantages to arbitration that can make it the wrong choice for a dispute for various reasons. Understanding how arbitration may not fit a situation or case can help parties make the best decision regarding the dispute resolution …

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What Does Litigate Mean?

What does litigate mean?

The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) defines “litigate” (from 17th Century Latin litigat, meaning “disputed in a lawsuit,” as “verb… take (a claim or a dispute) to a court of law.” Interestingly, the OED’s compilers chose this sentence as an example of proper usage of the word “Litigate”: “even a claim which is litigated and defended successfully involves high …

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Implied Contracts Explained

Implied Contracts

Implied contracts are typically not explained or considered until there is an issue with the agreement that the implied contract is responsible for upholding.  Implied contracts are actions or behaviors on the part of the parties that demonstrate an agreement between the parties, even if it is not spoken.  These contracts are compared to express …

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Individualist vs. Collectivist Peacemaking

Individualist vs. Collectivist Peacemaking

“Blessed are the peacemakers.” We value peacemakers. We may even aspire to be among them. But often we have no firm conception of what it means to “make peace.” Does it mean to cause the cessation of conflict, by whatever means? Or does it refer only to non-violent efforts to mediate disputes, or to bring …

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Dispute Resolution Systems Design

Dispute Resolution Systems Design

Increasingly, corporations recognize the value of a Program for managing workplace conflict that precludes litigation. These systems are designed by trained ADR consultants retained by the company on a contract basis. In order to implement such a Program, there must first be broad “buyin” from all segments of labor and management. Design consultants must therefore …

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Med-Arb for Your Business Dispute

Med-Arb for Your Business Dispute

In 1998, Professor Thomas J. Stipanowich, then of the University of Kentucky, was asked to chart the future of arbitration in the 21st Century.  He suggested then that arbitrators would increasingly be asked to “wear more than one hat.” That is, he predicted the growth of hybrid forms of dispute resolution such as “med-arb,” a process …

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What Does a Mediation Lawyer Do?

What Does a Mediation Lawyer Do?

What a mess. Recently, you were driving the middle car during a three-car accident.  Your car was totaled, you had to have leg surgery.  You have missed a lot of work and are way behind on many of your bills. You have been negotiating with all three insurance companies by yourself. You don’t think there …

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Personal Injury Case Checklist

Personal Injury Case Checklist

What is a personal injury case? A personal injury claim does not require physical injuries. Personal injury refers to a defendant’s failure to exercise care in a way that results in injury to another person or their property.  Have you been involved in an accident? Follow the personal injury checklists below. They will help you …

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