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Best Practices for Mediation and Settlement


Date: 02/07/2017

6 CLE Credits

3 Skills & 3 Areas of Professional Practice



In this workshop seminar extending over two sessions, attendees will be given the opportunity to hear from judges/mediators, plaintiff and defense counsel all having extensive experience and success with mediation. This program, presented for the third year, is now expanded and includes as special moderator Daniel Weitz, who working for New York State Court System disseminates best ADR practices throughout our court system as well as being a consummate professor on the subject at two law schools. Learn the principles of valuating a case, timing and approach to resolution, judge/mediator assessment and responsibility, plaintiff experience and strategy, and defense perspective. The curriculum will be strong, the experience and insight to be gained irreplaceable.  In addition, the attendees will be presented with hypothetical cases having liability and damage issues and will be divided into groups of 3 to play the roles of plaintiff, defendant and mediator/judge respectively. The mediator should help plaintiff and defense counsel communicate and negotiate in the hopes of finding a mutually agreeable solution. The exercise will be guided by the distinguished panel who will critique and highlight the strengths of each side.  Look forward to an enjoyable and informative evening on how to bring your client’s case to a successful conclusion!




Session 1, February 7, 2017


Special Moderator, (both sessions) Daniel Weitz, Esq., is Deputy Director, Division of Professional and Court Services/State ADR Coordinator NYS Unified Court System. Mr. Weitz oversees dispute resolution programs for the New York court system. He is also an adjunct professor teaching ADR (alternative dispute resolution) at both NYU School of Law and Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law.


Moderator, Alan L. Fuchsberg, (both sessions) is senior partner of The Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Firm. This is the fourth time he is moderating this program. Mr. Fuchsberg has over 30 years of practice including trials and mediation. The law firm has a diverse tort law litigation practice. He has participated in several bar association committees and panels. This is the third year he is presenting this seminar.


George J. Silver was elected as a New York State Supreme Court Justice in 2013. Justice Silver was elected to Civil Court bench in November 2004. He was initially assigned to Civil Court, Kings County until he was re-assigned in April 2009 to Family Court, Bronx County where he presided over juvenile delinquency matters. In January 2010, Judge Silver was appointed a Supreme Court Judge by designation and assigned to Supreme Court, New York County where he presided over 2000 motor vehicle accidents, among other cases. His current assignments include the Trial Assignment Part, the Medical Malpractice Early Settlement Part and an IAS Part handling general matters including Asbestos litigation. Justice Silver is also involved in many community-based and Bar Associations including the NAACP, the International Association of Gay and Lesbian Judges and the Jewish Lawyers Guild. He is currently co-chair of the Ethics and Professional Committee of The Torts, Insurance Compensation Law Section of the New York State Bar Association.


George Freitag has extensive litigation experience handling a wide variety of cases including personal injury, labor law, medical malpractice, wrongful death, trusts and estates and real estate matters. has mediated and arbitrated hundreds of cases involving complex litigation and catastrophic injuries. Mr. Freitag has garnered a reputation for his fair valuation of claims and is dedicated in his effort to assist parties in moving cases toward resolution. 

Howard Raphaelson, Esq., founded the Raphaelson & Levine Law Firm. Mr. Raphaelson's devotion to excellence is the foundation of the firm’s leadership and his reputation for holding negligent parties accountable. The expertise and effectiveness of Mr. Raphaelson's lawyering skills have resulted in more than two hundred million dollars of trial verdicts and settlements. Mr. Raphaelson has attended and successfully resolved well over a hundred mediations for cases as plaintiff’s advocate.


Session 2, February 28, 2017

Hon. Peter Skelos joined NAM after a long and illustrious judicial career which includes 11 years as an Associate Justice at the Appellate Division, 2nd Department. Prior to his appointment to the Appellate Division, he was a judge in the Nassau County District Court, Justice of the Supreme Court, 10th Judicial District and the Appellate Term, 9th and 10th Judicial Districts. He is extremely knowledgeable and has the depth of experience to transition from the courthouse to private ADR. He is known for his fair and unbiased approach when assisting parties with the settlement of their cases which in turn makes him extremely well suited to his role in private ADR.

William H. Groner in May, 2016, became CEO of Settlement Systems Arbitration and Mediation, which seeks to redefine the Art Science and Experience of Dispute Resolution. Bill is determined to create more effective, efficient (and pleasant) dispute resolution opportunities for litigants and adversaries in a broad variety of contexts.Bill is former co-founding and Managing Partner at Worby Groner Edelman LLP with over 30 years of experience in personal injury, products liability, medical malpractice and toxic exposure litigation.


Patrick Brennan, founding partner of Furman Kornfeld & Brennan LLP, a defense litigation firm, has personally taken more than 75 verdicts in his career in state and federal courts on complex medical malpractice, construction accident, premises liability and auto liability cases. At the same time, he knows when it is wise to settle a case and is not afraid to do so. Patrick has headed a national account for a leading international diagnostic laboratory, defending actions in three different regions nationally for this client. Patrick has lectured extensively for hospitals, risk management associations, insurers and the New York State Bar Association on topics such as HIPAA, wrongful death, and successful trial tactics. Patrick is an approved New York State CLE lecturer and has conducted numerous seminars for CLE credits.




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