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"Switching Hats" - Managing Mixed Modes Arbitration and Mediation

Total Credits: 2.0 CLE

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Alternative Dispute Resolution
Original Program Date:
May 12, 2022


Just how far should arbitrators go in setting the stage for settlement?  Suppose you are the arbitrator in a business dispute, and midway through hearings the lawyers come to you and ask that you “switch hats” and mediate the matter?  Or in another case, what if it was proposed that you attempt to mediate a settlement, and, if mediation was unsuccessful, that you render an arbitration award based on one or the other of the parties’ final offers?   Would you agree to such “mixed-mode” arrangements, and, if so, under what conditions? Although many dispute resolution professionals would decline the opportunity, many other arbitrators and mediators have experience switching hats during dispute resolution.  Recently, U.S. and international task forces have developed practical guidance for neutrals, lawyers and parties considering these and other mixed-mode options.  In this highly interactive program, Prof. Tom Stipanowich, JAMS arbitrator and mediator and long-time director of Pepperdine’s famed Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution, and Renee Gerstman,  AAA and private arbitrator and mediator, will engage participants in a series of real-life scenarios that explore the potential opportunities and pitfalls of such options and identify key tools and insights for future practice.   

Professor Thomas Stipanowich, 
Pepperdine University
Renee Gerstman, Gerstman Law



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