I was never ruined but twice; once when I lost a lawsuit and once when I won one.
Arbitration and mediation are responsive to parties’ needs.
Arbitration and mediation offer more flexible, less destructive, often less expensive methods for resolving disputes that traditionally might be settled through litigation. Typically, more flexible solutions are available than in a courtroom, and the issues are decided in private. Both sides have their say in structuring the process, can raise the issues and problems that directly impact their interests, and work together to find a “win-win” solution, often impossible in the court system.
- Arbitration is a creature of contract, and as such, can be structured to specify almost any format, procedure and time limit the contracting parties feel is reasonable. It can be a more expedited and less expensive alternative to litigation, but like litigation, a decision is made by a third-party and it is final and binding on the parties.
- Mediation is the process in which parties engage a neutral third person to work with them to facilitate resolution of the dispute. It is more flexible than either arbitration or litigation. It is a process completely party driven and within the parties control. The mediator is not a decision-maker, but rather helps the parties resolve the issue by working with them to evaluate their interests and options, often facilitating one-on-one or joint meetings with the parties, and develop an agreed-upon result. Mediation is typically quicker, more flexible, less expensive, less adversarial, and less stressful than the alternatives.
Geri has extensive experience in numerous dispute resolution venues.
Geri has participated as an advocate in numerous arbitrations and mediations conducted through AAA, JAMS, NASD, Commercial Division Program, State Bar Fee Division Program, New York City Bar Association, and privately, both as an arbitrator and mediator. The issues involved in the disputes included breach of contract, business torts, partnership, employment termination, employment discrimination and harassment, defamation, law firm and other partnership or business break-ups.
As both an arbitrator and a litigator, Geri also has extensive experience in navigating those paths where arbitration and litigation intersect. She has handled a wide-range of proceedings in both forums addressing arbitrability, arbitrator selections, preliminary relief in aid of arbitration, motions to compel and stay arbitration, motions to confirm and vacate arbitration awards, and enforcement issues.
Representative Reported Cases
Many arbitrations are resolved privately.
- Sybil Shainwald v. Benedict P. Morelli & Associates, P.C. Confirmation and enforcement of arbitration award.
- Cecala v. NationsBank Corp., 40 Fed. Appx. 795 (4th Cir. 2002). Confirmation of arbitration award dismissing claims of breach of contract, sex discrimination and sexual harassment against employer bank and obtained dismissal of post-arbitration complaint asserting wrongdoing against bank and bank’s counsel.
Geri was the founding Blogmaster for “Resolution Roundtable,” the blog of the Dispute Resolution Section of the New York State Bar Association
A more complete discussion of these topics is presented in “Resolving Disputes among Small Business Owners: Assessing the Benefits of Mediation and Arbitration as Opposed to Litigation.”
Discourage litigation. Persuade your neighbors to compromise whenever you can. Point out to them how the nominal winner is often a real loser — in fees, and expenses, and waste of time.