Miles Mediation & Arbitration Services

ATLANTA OFFICE:
6 Concourse Pkwy., Suite 1950

Atlanta, GA 30328
(678) 320-9118

SAVANNAH OFFICE:
17 Park of Commerce Blvd.
Suite 301

Savannah, GA 31405
(912) 417-2879
All Fax: (404) 389-0831

July 31, 2017 No Comments
Mediator Roy Paul

Mediator & Arbitrator Roy Paul is a member of Team Cohen in our Savannah office. He is a highly regarded neutral, who is particuarly commended for his expertise in areas of business disputes, commerical, estate & probate, construction, and complex personal injury matters. Learn more about Roy’s desire to be a mediator, his approach, and interests outside of his legal practice.

What made you want to become a lawyer?

My father was a chemist who ultimately ran ATF’s crime laboratory in Atlanta. He spent a lot of time testifying in Court and I grew up hearing stories about trials and lawyers.

What are you most proud of on your resume?

There are a number of things that come to mind. I am proud to have clerked for Judge Dudley Bowen. He was a wonderful mentor and was very kind to me. I am proud to have practiced with very fine lawyers at both my former firm, Bouhan, Williams & Levy and my current firm, Bart, Meyer & Company. I am proud to have been recognized by my peers as having particular experience in Commercial Litigation.

Why did you become a mediator over 10 years ago?

As an attorney, I have always taken very seriously my role not just as an advocate, but as a counselor. If no other resolution is possible, trying a case is one way to reach resolution. At the same time, I have always tried realistically to assess risk for my clients and to try to guide them to an appropriate negotiated resolution if that were at all possible. Mediation allows me to continue to find creative ways to resolve cases prior to trial.

What is the value of Alternative Dispute Resolution?

Alternative Dispute Resolution allows the parties themselves to control the outcome. I always emphasize to the parties in a mediation that they have the opportunity in mediation to control their own destinies. If they fail to take advantage of that opportunity, there will be a resolution by judge or jury – it just may not be the resolution that they are expecting or will want.

What is the most challenging part of being a mediator?

Every case is different. Every mediation is like a puzzle with a different solution. The challenging part is to find the best approach in a particular case.

What is your mediation style/approach?

I try very hard to listen to both sides and to try to be creative. My approach is to try to be analytical so that both sides accurately can assess their risk.

How would you clients describe you?

My clients would probably describe me as logical and generally calm. You often have to try to get your clients past emotional aspects of a case so that they can make a rational decision.

If you had to identify a passion for some area of the law, what would it be?

While I have practiced in a number of areas through the years, my specialty has been commercial litigation. I enjoy figuring out complex cases and then trying to get the best possible result for my clients.

Where Did You Grow Up? 

I grew up in Dekalb County near Oglethorpe University

What’s your Favorite Book?

It is hard to pick one. I tend to read a lot of history and biographies. I like T. Harry Williams’ biography of Huey Long and am currently reading a biography of Paul McCartney.

What do you like to do in your spare time? How do you unwind?

Like a lot of lawyers, I don’t have much spare time. I like to read and I play guitar. I am trying to get back into running. For many years, I ran the Peachtree Road Race, but have let myself get out of shape.

Do you have a favorite quote?

“It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit” – Harry Truman

What movie or novel character do you most identify with?

When I am particularly stressed out at work I identify with Bill Murray in Groundhog Day. 

What characteristic do you most admire in others?

I admire people who are kind, particularly when it is difficult under the circumstances.

What super power would you like to have?

As a very slow runner, it would be interesting to be really fast for a change.

If you could have dinner with anyone who would it be and why?

Thomas Jefferson. I actually read Dumas Malone’s multi-volume biography of Jefferson.  Jefferson was
interested in everything. It would be fun to explore with him what has happened with the country he helped found and to discuss modern transportation, technology etc.

 


To learn more about Roy, click here.

To book Roy for a mediation or arbitration, please call 912-417-2879 or click here.

July 31, 2017 No Comments
Mediator Joe Murphey at Miles office in Savannah

Team Leader/Mediator Joe Murphey has mediated several high-stakes mediations in Savannah over the past year and is slated to mediate at our Coastal office for the entire month of October (2017). Joe’s affinity for Savannah and the Georgia Coast is well-established, and we’re excited for him to do what he loves in his favorite city. Joe will still be available in Atlanta and other areas of the state, as needed, so if there’s a case in need of resolution outside of Savannah, you may call his Case Manager Jocelyn Parfaite (678-320-9118) or schedule online.

Joe recounts his love for Savannah and Coastal Georgia:

“It was a sunny summer day in 1989.  My fiancé (now wife) Susan and I were riding high.  We’d just graduated from Emory Law School, passed the bar, and, more importantly, had jobs.  This all happened in the span of May.  Before the grind of work commenced, we slipped away to Tybee Island for one last get away. And we fell in love.  Not just with each other (that was already a thing) but with Savannah and Tybee.  It was a fantastic week of fun and sun, and as we stood on the beach on our final night, watching the sun set, we vowed we’d come back some day to stay.

That was nearly 30 years ago, but Susan and I have never forgotten that week at Tybee, or our vow to return.  And we have returned.  Over the years we’ve rented houses and condos at the beach up and down the Georgia and Florida coasts — Atlantic side and Gulf — but we always end up returning to Tybee.  The place, and her people, are just the best. 

Work, and the work of raising kids, has kept us tied to the ATL for the past few decades, but the nest is now empty.  With more time on my hands, and a Miles Mediation office in Savannah, it’s time to fulfill the vow to return.  Susan and I booked a rental on Tybee for the entire month of October.  If she finds she can run her law practice from the deck of a Tybee condo, and I can score a few Savannah mediations, we’re one step closer to the goal….”   -Joe Murphey 

Click here to view Joe’s bio and online calendar for easy scheduling.

July 25, 2017 No Comments
mediation training

by Wendy Williamson, Esq.

I have trained hundreds of non-lawyers in civil mediation and participants frequently tell me that they wish they had trained earlier. I encourage you to complete mediation training sooner rather than later for the following reasons:

  1. To Minimize Attorneys in your Lives. Hiring an attorney to fix a dispute is like using money for home repairs rather than home improvements. Minimizing disputes allows you to hire attorneys for growth rather than damage control.  No matter your occupation, if you interact with people, your peace and success will depend upon your communication skills and your ability to manage difficult conversations effectively and efficiently.  Mediation training uses current research, hands-on exercises and role plays to exercise communication skills, to develop the ability to manage conflict and to build solutions through team work and agreement. Developing mediation skills enables you to spend your precious time, energy and resources on making a better life, business or relationship.
  1. To Manage your Stress Level. We live in very stressful times. Stress impacts on our ability to listen, think clearly and communicate effectively. In mediation training, we learn to create safe spaces where people can listen and reason. We learn how impactful location, timing, planning and written details can be on our productivity and success. We study how people think and make decisions, how to effectively be agents of reality, how to respectfully deal with emotions and expectations, how to manage our own emotions, how to practice active listening to avoid misunderstandings and develop trust and critical knowledge. The greatest threats to working relationships are miscommunication, unrealistic or unmet expectations and the perception of disrespect. The skills honed and practiced in mediator training will help you avoid these pitfalls and the resulting stress.
  1. A Proven Communication Weapon for a New World. Someone posts on Facebook, co-workers communicate by email copying “up the chain,” bosses text liberally at all hours or we join a conference call with faceless people from around the world. We can no longer rely upon workplace conversations taking place face-to-face or even at the workplace. How do we manage this communication blob? Strategically. Purposefully. Carefully. In mediation training, we learn to structure communication so that people can be heard and understood. We practice skills such as reframing, restating and brainstorming which compensate for the dangers inherent in conversations laden with opinions. Mediation is designed to bring back civil conversations in a world leaning toward voice-to-voice combat.
  1. Life Management. If you are like me, you find yourself having more difficult conversations in your daily life outside of work. Have you had a discussion about national politics or the Affordable Care Act lately? Whether we are in parent-teacher conferences, at our bank or dealing with co-workers, we have an increasing need to manage conversations wisely and productively. Mediation training is an invaluable life skill.

I hope I have the privilege to train you in the life skills of negotiation and mediation. Please join a class by registering here.


Why Should Non-Attorneys Complete Mediation Training
Wendy Williamson, Esq. is a mediator and instructor with Miles in Savannah and Atlanta.  She has over 20 years of mediation experience and is widely considered one of the top mediation trainers in Georgia.  
To schedule a mediation with Wendy, please call 678-320-9118 or visit her online calendar.

July 21, 2017 No Comments

DATE: August 22 , 2017
TIME: 12 p.m.- 1 p.m.
LOCATION: Coastal State Bar of Georgia Office
18 E. Bay St. Savannah, Georgia 31401 Mediator Joe Murphey's head shot

Join Team Leader/Mediator Joe Murphey for a free Lunch & Learn on mediation tips and strategies, seen through the lens of the infamous 1978 Gator Bowl, in which Coach Woody Hayes ended his career by punching opposing player, Charlie Bauman. This CLE is approved by the State Bar of Georgia for (1) hour of regular credit and (1) hour of ethics credit.

*CLE also available via webinar. Click here to register. 

*Excerpt from Joe’s presentation: 

The Fragility of a Good Professional Reputation Negotiation at mediation can be stressful, especially if the other side is acting in what you deem to be bad faith.  The combination of bad behavior from the opposition and growing client frustration and disappointment can boil over.  This is particularly true if the mediator is not effectively cooling things down.  Don’t be the lawyer whose long-established and well-earned reputation is sullied by a momentary outburst.  Don’t punch Charlie Bauman.  Take a deep breath.  Gather yourself together.  And make a counteroffer.*

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July 12, 2017 No Comments
Mediator Jim Anderson

Mediator & Arbitrator Jim Anderson recently joined Miles in Atlanta. As a member of Team Wilson, Jim mediates primarily in areas of aviation, construction law, property damage, personal injury, contract law, estate, probate, and domestic relations. In addition to Jim’s law and ADR practices, he has logged thousands of miles as an experienced aviator. And as if flying national and international flights isn’t impressive enough, Jim is building an FAA-approved four-passenger airplane. Learn more about Jim’s fascinating pursuits below.
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