300 South Grand Avenue - 37th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90071
Phone: (213) 621-0832

 

SCOTT’S AREAS OF MEDIATION PRACTICE

 

1.   General Business Disputes

 Examples of cases successfully mediated:

Resolution of dispute between two “partners” over the division of the proceeds from the sale of a home which had been improved for the purpose of sale.  One partner had provided the funding and the other the construction expertise.  Although numerous written agreements had been prepared, after the property was sold for less than expected, the vague and incomplete terms of the various written documents were insufficient to resolve the disputes between the parties absent a mediated resolution.

Resolution of a dispute between a large manufacturer of landscape equipment by one of its former distributors.  Former distributor claimed exclusive distribution rights over a territory and had sued the manufacturer for breach of contract and the new distributor for interference with contract.

Resolution of disputes over unpaid attorneys’ fees and related cross-claims for legal malpractice.

 

2.    Real Property Disputes

 Examples of cases successfully mediated:

Mediation of a longstanding boundary dispute between two residential properties.  An agreed survey determined that, over the years, encroachments had occurred on each property.  The matter was successfully resolved by assisting each party in determining what encroachments were important to their enjoyment and use of their properties, and compromising as to the non-essential encroachments.

Claim by homeowner against a title company based upon the existence of sanitary sewer easement which extended across homeowner's property and was not noted on title report.  When a new home was built behind, the homeowner’s custom tile driveway needed to be torn out and could not be repaired to original state. Issues to be resolved included damage to homeowner’s property based upon lack of disclosure of the sewer easement, potential diminution of property value, and claims that the title company failed to provide a defense in a prior declaratory relief action between the homeowner and his neighbor.  The damage claim exceeded $600,000.  The case was settled after two mediation sessions.

 

3.   Employment Disputes

Examples of cases successfully  mediated:

 Employee who suffered from HIV was laid off in what his employer contended was merely a reduction in force.  Employee claimed termination was based upon his medical condition.  Plaintiff’s opening demand was $5,000,000.  Case was successfully settled at the end of an eighteen hour continuous mediation session.

Mediation of claims of termination in violation of public policy. Cases resolved have included: (1) a claim by a terminated city employee that she had been made to the  a scapegoat when an audit of her department revealed financial improprieties; and, (2) a claim by an inspector of aircraft parts that he was terminated based upon his complaints that the parts did not meet specification.

Successful mediation of a sexual harassment and race discrimination claim presented by a female employee against her employer, a well-known international company.

Claim by employer against former employee and his wife for embezzlement of $1,200,000.  Former employee was incarcerated during the entire mediation process based upon conviction for prior embezzlement charges and current pending charges.   Parties to the case included a national bank accused of failing have sufficient safeguards in place.  During four separate all day mediation sessions over a period of six months issues as to the bank were resolved.  In addition, an agreement was ultimately reached as to the amount to be repaid to the employer, and a process for the staged disposition of assets was agreed upon in order to provide for repayment without resulting in the unnecessary sale of all of the employee’s assets.

4.   Probate/Trust Disputes

 Examples of cases successfully mediated:

Successful resolution over four separate sessions of disputes between five adult children concerning the disposition of their mother’s estate with a value in excess of $2 million.  Claims to be resolved included agreeing upon who would be successor trustee, claims against the former trustee (one of the brothers) and his wife, disputes with the existing institutional  trustee and various accounting issues.

Resolution of a dispute between a widow and her deceased husband’s brother regarding the division of  their partnership businesses, which included a gas station and an apartment building.  The matter was successfully resolved over three separate mediation sessions.

5.   Construction Disputes

Examples of cases successfully mediated:

Resolution of claim by sheet metal fabricator for work performed in grinding and polishing the inside portions of stainless steel tanks.  Fabricator made claims for extra costs as a result of change scope and limited access. 

Resolution of claim by concrete subcontractor for payments due for work performed in constructions a public works residential project.  The owner and general contractor contended that there were defects in the workmanship resulting in potential long-term impacts in the structural elements of the building. Case was resolved in a manner which provided for resolution of known disputes and reservation of potential future indemnity claims.

Resolution of dispute between homeowner, engineer and architect regarding construction of a multi-million dollar beachfront home.  Disputed issues included claims that the structural elements of the home, as designed, were insufficient to support the upper stories of the home and claims for non-payment by the design professionals.    

Resolution of disputes between landlords, tenants and contractors regarding tenant improvements in office high rises. 

6.   Condemnation & Eminent Domain Matters     

 Examples of cases successfully mediated:

Over a period of four months successfully mediated eight different  matters involving a redevelopment agency’s condemnation of numerous parcels of real property in order to complete the development of a “big box” retail complex.  Based upon different zoning and mixed uses in the area (residential, light industrial and service businesses) no matter was the same and each involved different valuation methodologies.

Successfully mediated a matter involving condemnation by a redevelopment agency of a parcel of property containing both a family business and an apartment building.  The difference between the valuations presented by the parties' experts was in excess of $850,000.

Successful mediation of matter involving condemnation by a redevelopment agency of parcel of property containing three different parcels which had been acquired by a family over many years for the purpose of private development. The case involved significant differences of opinion as to the appropriate method for valuing the parcels, which resulted in a difference between valuation views of $1,100,000 at the commencement of the mediation. The case was settled after two separate mediation sessions.

Successful mediation of an eminent domain matter involving a multi-story building, which included a billboard on the roof.  Challenges to resolution included disputes as to ownership of the sign as between the property owners and the sign company, and differing interests as between the owners of the building, who had been divorced for more than 20 years.




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