“With much of his caseload involving real estate, construction and land-use - along with spats involving public entities such as CalTrans - he deals with plenty of aggrieved individuals. And he does so effectively and efficiently, say lawyers who repeatedly use his services.”
- The Recorder, Judicial Profiles
ARBITRATION. Governments, companies and individuals have engaged Ron to settle their fights quickly and fairly with a binding decision more final than going to trial. Ron normally serves as sole arbitrator or as panel chair, ruling on arbitral jurisdiction, disputed discovery, proper parties, summary judgment, and other important procedural motions.
Examples of typical cases include:·
- Numerous construction lawsuits between business and government entities
- Dozens of construction and real property cases for the State of California, through its Office of Administrative Administrative Hearings and Department of Consumer Affairs
- Claims and counterclaims by a public university campus and a construction company over a new library and computer center
- A bitter dispute between two top commercial lenders over royalties from well-known popular music, and
- Claims and counterclaims over major damage to a national secure data center - conducted as sole arbitrator simultaneously in two financial capitals by video, with lawyers and witnesses in both cities.
MEDIATION. Ron has mediated a wide range of cases - from international business disputes, to civil rights, to couple and family relations, to high-profile community and government entity cases. In virtually every case the parties have found they could craft a voluntary legally-binding settlement resolving all issues. Ron has specialized in disputes involving buildings and land, especially between joint owners and business partners.
Examples of larger scale, high profile public entity disputes successfully mediated include:
- A twelve-year public battle between the City of Berkeley and an entire redevelopment-targeted neighborhood it had purchased, including demonstrations, death threats, and local ballot measures
- A public fight between the County of Marin, a builder, adjoining neighbors, and the neighborhood association, in which all parties were headed to Federal Court, and
- An intense dispute between a hundred businesses, four neighborhood associations and three city departments.
Examples of typical commercial disputes successfully mediated include:
- Many cases involving construction and alteration of corporate headquarters, manufacturing and warehousing facilities
- A high-emotion lawsuit on the eve of trial between the buyers, sellers, and builders of an upscale Marin estate, and
- The imminent collapse of a highly successful corporation because of a pitched battle between the two top executives.
HYBRID AND CUSTOM-DESIGNED PROCESSES. You can arrange specialized phone, video, and online sessions so no one ever has to travel. You can agree to limit your risk. You can create the customized process that best fits the size and nature of your case. Ron has been conducting a wide variety of hybrid ADR processes for decades, and strongly recommends you consider the example below.
Example - sophisticated parties have found that the following hybrid process combined the best aspects of both mediation and arbitration:
- Suppose you really want your matter settled. You also want to minimize your risk that much wider claims and counterclaims could be filed in court or arbitration.
- In the mediation phase you resolve as many issues as possible. You get as close as you can on any remaining ones. In the unlikely event a gap remains, you submit only your small remaining differences to an arbitrator instead of starting over with unlimited claims exposure.
- You restrict your arbitrator’s authority to basing the award only on your last offer or the other side’s, just like the process top professional athletes use. The power of this process is that each side naturally submits their most reasonable final offer to maximize chances the matter will be decided on their terms.
- Do you have confidence in your mediator's ethical commitment to confidentiality? Do you trust your neutral to consider only the evidence properly submitted if they also conduct a later arbitration? Then you can skip the considerable time and expense of having to present your facts, circumstances and preexisting documents all over again to a new arbitrator. You will need to agree clearly in writing exactly which mediation communications, if any, you authorize your neutral to consider in the arbitration phase. The very different laws and ethics that apply in different phases also must be carefully observed.
- You can have a very short and inexpensive arbitration and still be sure your dispute will be settled, so you’re free to get on with life.