My career as an attorney began in 1993 by mediating a couple divorces. They were satisfying because the parties were willing to work together to achieve affordable settlements with my guidance and the reminder to them, when old issues were brought up, that we were all there because we needed to look ahead.
My career then turned to representing companies and individuals in relation executive compensation and employee benefits matters, but in 2004, I returned to dispute resolution, this time of small-dollar matters. These have ranged from breach of contract claims, slip-and-fall damages claims, to landlord-tenant disputes, and other issues. My approach is to adopt the more informal, and more involved approach, that one ideally finds in small claims court, but in practice is not always the case.
To maximize efficiency, both parties must organize their evidence beforehand and provide a position summary in addition to a fuller statement of legal arguments. Testimony generally is by sworn affidavit, if both parties agree, otherwise time will be given for witnesses to testify and be cross-examined. Each party will execute in advance a form of stipulated settlement, providing two alternatives for resolution of each issue presented so that selection can be made between each alternative for full resolution. Unless both parties agree to such, audio/video recording is prohibited.