Meet Patricia D. Barrett, Esq.

Ms. Barrett is a full time mediator/arbitrator and has been successful in resolving civil disputes in multiple forums, including arbitration, mediation and mandatory settlement conferences. She has the ability to listen, build rapport with the parties and counsel, and is persistent in working toward resolution. Ms. Barrett’s philosophy is that all civil cases can, should and will settle and she works toward that goal with each new case.

Confidential- Mediation is confidential, to the extent you desire and agree, be that by statute, contract, rules of evidence or privilege. Mediation discussions and all materials developed for a mediation are not admissible in any subsequent court or other contested proceeding, except for a finalized and signed mediated agreement. Your mediator is obligated to describe any exceptions to this general confidentiality of mediation. Confidentiality in mediation may be waived in writing, although the mediator may retain his or her own ability to refuse to testify in any contested case. The extent of confidentiality for any "caucus meetings" (meetings between the mediator and individual parties) should also be defined.

Informed- The mediation process offers a full opportunity to obtain and incorporate legal and other expert information and advice. Mutually acceptable experts can be retained. Such jointly obtained expert information can be designated as either confidential to the mediation or, as the parties desire, as admissible in any subsequent contested proceeding. Expert advice is never determinative in mediation. The parties always retain decision-making power. Mediators are bound to encourage parties to obtain legal counsel and to advise them to have any mediated agreement involving legal issues reviewed by independent legal counsel prior to signing. Whether legal advice is sought is, ultimately, a decision of each mediation participant.

Impartial, Neutral, Balanced and Safe - The mediator has an equal and balanced responsibility to assist each mediating party and cannot favor the interests of any one party over another, nor should the mediator favor a particular result in the mediation. Your mediator is ethically obligated to acknowledge any substantive bias on substantive issues in discussion. The mediator's role is to ensure that parties reach agreements in a voluntarily and informed manner, and not as a result of coercion or intimidation.


EDUCATION/TRAINING:
  • Juris Doctorate, Western State University, College of Law, Fullerton, 1980;
  • Master of Arts, Pepperdine University, Psychology, 1969;
  • Bachelor of Arts, Azusa Pacific University, Psychology, 1968.
  • Mediation, Factfinding in the Public Sector, Southwest Regional Training Center, Los Angeles
  • 30-hours training in Mediation, University of California, Riverside
  • 42 hours training - Mediating the Litigated Case, Pepperdine University offered by the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution and California Academy of Mediation Professionals, May & June, 2001
  • Elder Law Mediation - Peppedine University, Strauss Institute, June 2013
  • Annual continuing education in mediation techniques

DISPUTE RESOLUTION/ NEUTRAL THIRD PARTY EXPERIENCE:
  • Hearing officer in over 100 school district disciplinary hearings since 1980.
  • Fact Finder in matters relating to Employment, Discrimination and General Investigation of employee grievances.
  • Member of Judicial Arbitration Panels for San Bernardino and Riverside Superior Courts since 1989 arbitrating cases in the following areas (over 500 matters handled):
  • Private mediation, arbitration, voluntary settlement conferences for personal injury, uninsured motorist claims and employment matters.
  • Member of panel for First Resolution Services, Inc.
  • Member of panel for Inland Valley Arbitration Mediation Service (IVAMS)
  • On California State Mediation and Arbitration list
  • Serves as mediator/arbitrator in the following areas:
    • Employment
    • Personal Injury
    • Uninsured Motorist Claims
    • Property Damage
    • Real Estate
    • Probate, Trusts, Elder Law
    • Commercial Transactions
    • Contract Disputes
    • Business Disputes
    • Collection

LEGAL EXPERIENCE:
  • Counsel for school district including labor negotiations, policy writing, consultation on employer-employee relations.
  • Private practice since 1982 representing clients in business, employment and estate planning matters.
  • Employment matters including wage/hour, discrimination, sexual harassment, wrongful termination, defamation, invasion of privacy, contract disputes, In employment law matters, approximately fifty percent of practice representing plaintiffs (employees) and fifty percent representing defendants (employers). Served as contract counsel for California Department of Corrections, Los Angeles Community College District. Represent private small employers in litigation and transactional employment matters.
  • Civil litigation and appellate practice in both state and federal courts.
  • Law professor at Tri-Community Adult School, Court Reporting, two years.

BUSINESS EXPERIENCE:
  • Director of Classified Personnel, Lowell Joint School District, Whittier, CA
  • Director of Classified Personnel, Palm Springs Unified School District, Palm Springs, CA
  • Personnel Consultant for school districts in affirmative action, classification, salary matters, rules and regulations, policies and procedures
  • Director of private educational institution

PROFESSIONAL LICENSES:
  • Admitted to practice before all California courts, the Federal District Courts for the Central and Southern Districts of California and the Federal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals

 

 






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