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"Making Mediation Work - Tips From Both Sides of the Table"

Every lawsuit involves time and money.  Even with a dead-bang ringer of a case, it's possible to spend gobs of cash and countless hours only to get a huge doughnut in return.  And that might be for the prevailing party.  Things could be worse if you lose.  Used effectively, mediation is a great tool to settle cases and help minimize the risks facing your client.  A retired judge and two litigators offer tips from both sides of the table demonstrating how to: Meaningfully communicate with clients, mediators and opposing counsel; Gather and organize evidence to make effective use of time; Utilize expert witnesses in a supporting role, and Prepare thoughtful and brief, briefs.

Workshop Handout

Judge James Gray uses the experience gained from 25 years on the Orange County Superior Court bench to mitigate and mediate cases at ADR Services Inc.  He has cultivated a reputation as an innovator, proactively crafting creative solutions to problems.  Judge Gray’s experienced realism, practicality, and disciplined optimism allow him to effectively resolve tort and business disputes, even those based upon emotion and company politics.  He has become known for settling “unsettleable” cases. He resolved what was probably the first Catholic priest child sexual molestation case in the country, resulting in positive institutional changes in the Orange County and Los Angeles Dioceses of the Catholic Church. He also settled the difficult Wade Boggs palimony case that had been bouncing around the courthouse for more than a year before it landed in his courtroom.  Judge Gray is the author of “Wearing the Robe:  the Art and Responsibilities of Judging in Today’s Courts”.

Todd Friedland is a founding partner of Stephens Friedland LLP where his practice focuses on commercial litigation and strategic counseling including complex contract disputes, class actions, unlawful business practices, trade secrets, business torts, real estate and appellate matters. Prior to forming Stephens Friedland LLP, Mr. Friedland practiced with the multi-national law firm of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman.  Mr. Friedland is a past-president of Constitutional Rights Foundation Orange County, and currently serves on the Orange County Bar Association's Board of Directors.  He is a fearless trial lawyer and creative negotiator, who is conscious of the economic realities of litigation.  He has mediated hundreds of cases, including class actions, with values ranging up to $100 million. 

Shannon Lamb is a partner of Stephens Friedland LLP.  Her practice focuses on consulting and litigation services for businesses, property owners, management companies, homeowners' associations, and board members. She is experienced in dealing with routine matters as well as complex, multi-party lawsuits. She has negotiated in excess of 900 successful settlements, and has been an integral member of trial teams that have attained verdicts totaling more than one billion dollars.