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

March 21, 2017 No Comments

by John K. Miles, Jr., Esq.

Years ago when I practiced law, I worked for a client in the construction industry. The company required claims to be mediated – a fairly new concept at time. When one of their products turned out defective, I often found myself sitting around a table at mediation. Former Georgia Attorney General, Mike Bowers, was the mediator on a number of these cases. After we got to know each other, at one point he suggested that I would be a good mediator. Mike meant it as a compliment but I was offended. I was a litigator. Mediation was for those who couldn’t make it in the courtroom.

I did have a great deal of respect for Mike, so I couldn’t dismiss his suggestion entirely. After thinking it over, I asked why he thought I’d be a good mediator. He said I had the right personality. He explained how successful mediators need to be equal parts people pleaser and closer. He added, “One minute, you have to tell someone they are crazy as hell and the next, be willing to jump up and get them a cup of coffee.”

Over the years I’ve come to realize the wisdom in Mike’s observation. Attorneys do select a mediator based on the mediator’s ability to get a case settled but that mediator also has to be someone the attorney wants to spend the day with. There aren’t many personalities who share this unique blend of characteristics.

I enjoyed success as a litigator but I love mediating. The variety of cases always ensures you are learning new things. I’ve learned how highways and bridges are constructed, the complexities of the human brain and how to take a good idea and build it into a multimillion-dollar company.  Each day, I get to work with fascinating people. I’ve mediated with celebrities, politicians, sports stars and leaders of industry. I’ve even mediated cases for two episodes of reality television.

When practicing law, I loved calendar calls. Going to the courthouse gave me the opportunity to visit with my colleagues. At Miles we have seven to ten cases mediating every day. It’s a pleasure to catch up with old friends in the legal industry and make new ones.

How fortunate for me that I was able to turn a personality disorder – people pleasing — into a career. Every morning I go to work, I count my blessings making a living doing what I love.

 


John Miles is the founder of Miles Mediation & Arbitration Services. He has mediated over 2,000 cases and continues to mediate full-time, handling disputes in areas of personal injury, premises liability, insurance, construction, estates, fiduciary, contracts, commercial, business, employment, and subrogation. For more information about John or to schedule a mediation with him, click here. 

March 20, 2017 No Comments
Why Should Non-Attorneys Complete Mediation Training

by Wendy Williamson, Esq.

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

  1. Practice Enhancement. Any lawyer who represents clients uses negotiating skills in his or her practice. Negotiating skills are like muscles that need training and conditioning. Mediator training is like the P90X for negotiating skills. P90X is an exercise program based upon “Muscle Confusion.” Muscle confusion is the idea that by constantly changing workouts you “confuse” your muscles and thereby increase stimulation and growth. Mediator training uses updated research, hands-on exercises and role plays to exercise different techniques and angles of negotiating skills which will help an attorney find weaknesses, develop additional strengths, open perspectives and grow creativity. Whether you end up in the mediator’s seat or the attorney’s seat, lessons learned through mediator training will enhance your practice.
  1. Client Preparation and Management. My law school education (long ago) was devoted to preparing cases and applying law and precedent. It took years of trial and error to learn how to manage and prepare my clients, which is a whole other skillset. In mediator training, attorneys 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 their own emotions and how to practice active listening to avoid misunderstandings and develop trust and critical knowledge. In my practice as a mediator, one of the greatest impediments to a healthy and expeditious resolution of a case is a client’s unrealistic expectations of the outcome. The skills honed and practiced in mediator training will help attorneys from the first to the final meetings with their clients. Poorly prepared or unrealistic clients are a predictable source of criticism, disparagement and complaints for attorneys and the legal system when clients believe their attorney or the legal system failed them.
  1. Continuing Education Goldmine. Upon completion of the five-day mediator training and practicum, an attorney receives 28 hours in Continuing Legal Education credit including 3 hours for Ethics and 3 hours of Professionalism. An attorney will be covered for more than two years in CLEs.
  1. Life Management. If you are like me, I find myself having more difficult conversations in my daily life outside of my legal practice. Whether I am dealing with a service provider, my community or government or my family, conflict and negotiation occur with frequency. For example, when I engage with a medical provider or insurance company about an outstanding bill, I find myself practicing de-escalation and active listening instead of screaming [which I would more naturally do]. 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 clicking here to sign up. 

 


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.

March 15, 2017 No Comments

John Miles today delivered his presentation “Successfully Presenting Your Case in Mediation and Arbitration” at Proving Damages, an ICLE seminar chaired by Attorney Eric Hertz.

 

John enjoys sharing insights from his extensive mediation career to help attorneys effectively communicate with and manage the expectations of plaintiffs who are emotionally invested in their case. It’s sometimes easy to forget that for the plaintiff the mediation is their day in court. They believe that the mediation will be their opportunity to be heard. This is particularly true for the emotionally motivated plaintiff, as for them the process is as important as the outcome.

 

 

 


John Miles is the founder of Miles Mediation & Arbitration Services. He has mediated over 2,000 cases and continues to mediate full-time, handling disputes in areas of personal injury, premises liability, insurance, construction, estates, fiduciary, contracts, commercial, business, employment, and subrogation. For more information about John or to schedule a mediation with him, click here. 

 

March 15, 2017 No Comments

Wendy Williamson recently delivered a presentation entitled, “Professional Training for Attorneys, Part 1” at the Coastal State Bar of Georgia Office in Savannah. The presentation was also available for participants remotely via web-conferencing. All participants received 1.0 hour of professionalism CLE credit.

Wendy will offer another Professionalism webinar on Tuesday, March 28.
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER.

To view Professional Training for Attorneys, Part 1, CLICK HERE. 

 

February 28, 2017 No Comments

Voting is now open for Daily Report’s 2017 Best Of. For the past three years, Miles has been named the number one Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) firm in Georgia. We take a great deal of pride in those awards. Not just because we’ve won another award but because of what it represents. We’ve earned your trust and respect. We would be honored if you would take time to vote again this year.

Question #57 will allow you to cast your vote for Miles. Question #58 will allow you to vote for the “Best Mediator/Arbitrator” in the state. (NOTE: Miles Mediator & Arbitrator Greg Parent won last year.)

Thanks in advance for placing your trust in Miles.

CLICK HERE TO VOTE

February 28, 2017 No Comments

Miles is proud to support the 24th Annual GAWL (Georgia Association of Women Lawyers) Foundation Art Auction this Saturday- March 4, 2017. The Art Auction is GAWL Foundation’s primary annual fundraiser.

Date: March 4, 2017
Time: 6:30pm to 10pm
Location: Offices of Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP at Atlantic Station
Attire: Festive professional attire

For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.

February 28, 2017 No Comments

John Miles was invited again to present “Successfully Presenting Your Case in Mediation and Arbitration” at ICLE’s upcoming seminar, Proving Damages. Attorney Eric Hertz is the seminar’s Program Chair.

The seminar will be held at the State Bar of Georgia and is accessible video conference at the Coastal Georgia State Bar office in Savannah and the South Georgia State Bar office in Tifton. Note: Space at the Savannah and Tifton offices is each limited to 30 attendees.

 

For more information, click here. 

To register for the seminar, click here. 

For more information about John Miles and to view his online calendar, click here.

February 24, 2017 No Comments
Lynn Roberson

Lynn Roberson was recently recognized as a Georgia Super Lawyer in the practice area of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) and is listed in the most recent edition of Super Lawyers Magazine.

Lynn has been named a Georgia Super Lawyer every year since 2004. She was named as one of the top 50 women lawyers in Georgia in 2007, 2009, 2012-2015, and one of the top 100 lawyers in the state in 2013-2014. She was also selected for inclusion in the 20th and 21st Editions of The Best Lawyers in America.

“This recognition further confirms what we all know about Lynn,” said Team Leader Susan Forsling. “The same level of professionalism, skill, and talent that made her a top trial lawyer is translating to her mediation practice. She is becoming a sought-after mediator, and I’m proud to have her on my team at Miles.”

As a member of Team Forsling, Lynn specializes in premises liability and personal injury cases. She is a past president of both the Atlanta Bar and the Georgia Defense Lawyers Association.

For more information about Lynn or to view her online calendar, click here. 

 

February 22, 2017 No Comments

Miles Mediator and trainer Wendy Williamson will lead a Professionalism CLE on March 14 at the State Bar of Georgia Office in Savannah.

DATE: March 14, 2017
TIME: 12 p.m.- 1 p.m.
LOCATION: Coastal State Bar of Georgia Office, 18 E. Bay St. Savannah, Georgia 31401

Distinction Between Ethics and Professionalism
The Supreme Court has distinguished between ethics and professionalism, to the extent of creating separate one-hour CLE requirements for each.  The best explanation of the distinction between ethics and professionalism that is offered by former Chief Justice Harold Clarke of the Georgia Supreme Court:

“. . . the idea that ethics is a minimum standard which is required of all lawyers while professionalism is a higher standard expected of all lawyers.”

Join Wendy Williamson for a discussion on the Laws and the Rules of Professional Conduct. This CLE is approved by the State Bar of Georgia for 1 hour of Professionalism credit.

NOTE:  Only “Self-Study” CLE credits apply if viewing this presentation via web conferencing.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

 

February 22, 2017 No Comments

Team Leader Danny Cohen is taking a rare week off from mediating to focus on one of his longtime passions: singing. Danny will spend this week immersed in the 24th season of the American Traditions Vocal Competition (ATC), as he is the president of ATC’s board of directors. The week-long event is dedicated to singing competitions and educational programming and is held in Savannah every year.

Danny is recognized throughout the Coastal Empire as a talented singer, and he received a much-deserved spotlight on his career in a February 2016 Daily Report article. “I love the vocal arts and every year look forward to my role as the president of the ATC board of directors,” said Danny. “The competition celebrates the diversity of local music and showcases the incredible talents of singers from various parts of the country.”

During 2003-2005 Danny competed in ATC, reaching the semi-finals in 2005. “When I competed back then, I sang in several genres of American music like Broadway and musicals; American opera arias, jazz, folk songs and much more,” said Danny. “And even though I no longer compete, I enjoy every second of my interactions with all involved in this fantastic vocal competition.”

This year, 27 contestants from all over the country will vie for the gold medal prize of $12,000 and placement on the Savannah Philharmonic’s 2017-18 mainstage program.

This year’s competition runs Feb. 20-24. To learn more: click here. 

February 21, 2017 No Comments
Mediator Arbitrator Joe Murphey, Esq.

We’re thrilled to announce that Team Leader Joe Murphey was recently selected as one of the 2017 Top 100 Georgia Super Lawyers, a listing comprised of lawyers who obtained the highest votes in the 2017 Georgia Super Lawyers nomination, research, and review process. This is the 11th consecutive year Murphey has been selected as a Super Lawyer.

Murphey was also selected among a handful of other attorneys as a Super Lawyer in the practice area of Alternative Dispute Resolution.

Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high-degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The patented selection process includes independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations. The result is a credible, diverse and comprehensive list of remarkable attorneys.

Murphey is a team leader at Miles, where he specializes in complex cases in areas of wrongful death, trucking liability, premises liability, products liability, and personal injury. He is a member of the Georgia Academy of Mediators and Arbitrators, an association recognizing the top 5% neutral attorneys in the state with substantial experience in the resolution of civil/commercial disputes, and is AV rated, the highest rating possible for ability and ethics, by Martindale Hubbell.

In 2016, Murphey was also named an “ADR Champion Trailblazer” by the National Law Journal. He was the only mediator in Georgia to receive this prestigious distinction.

To view the digital edition of Super Lawyers Magazine, click here.

February 17, 2017 No Comments

Miles mediators, Lynn Roberson and Sally Akins are highlighted in today’s “After Hours” section of the Daily Report. The section features additional snapshots from the Georgia Defense Lawyers Association’s 14th annual judicial reception on February 2 at the State Bar of Georgia. More than 175 lawyers and judges were in attendance.

Sally is the President-elect of the Georgia Defense Lawyers Association (GDLA) and Lynn is a past president of the association, as well as a past president of the Atlanta Bar Association. Both Sally and Lynn conduct mediations in Atlanta, with Sally mediating primarily at Miles’ Savannah office.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Civil Defense Bar in Georgia, and Miles is proud to support its mission and members.

Click here to view photos from the event.

February 15, 2017 No Comments

John Miles and Miles Mediation & Arbitration Services are featured in the most recent issue of Atlanta Attorney at Law Magazine.

The cover story includes an in-depth interview with John Miles, in which he discusses the firm’s ascent as a premier ADR firm in the Southeast. He sheds light on the expertise of Miles’ team leaders; the opening of the firm’s Savannah office; and the significant number of complex disputes handled by the firm’s experienced panel of neutrals.

The current issue debuted today in digital format and hits newsstands next week. Click here to view the full digital edition.

February 10, 2017 No Comments

Team Leader Joe Murphey recently returned from a trip to the small village of El Rincon in Honduras. Joe traveled as a representative of the Rotary Club of East Cobb, a group with which he is actively involved. While there, Joe met students, parents, and educators who are beneficiaries of Lunches for Learning, a non-profit that provides healthy lunches for elementary school children in rural Honduras. He was accompanied by the nonprofit’s Executive Director, Phil Dodson.

The Rotary Club of East Cobb recently joined forces with Lunches for Learning to sponsor the school, Pedro Nufio. The partnership enables its students to continue receiving daily lunches. Whereas before it had a sponsor, no children attended the school, now Pedro Nufio is overflowing with students and has even added seventh-, eighth-, and ninth-grade classes.

According to Lunches for Learning, “statistics show that a (Honduran) child who earns at least a sixth-grade education has hope for breaking the cycle of poverty because he or she will learn basic reading, writing and math skills that open future doors.”

Honduras is one of the poorest countries in the world, and many children, particularly in rural areas, do not have access to education. Through Lunches for Learning, more than 1700 children in rural Honduras are now able to attend elementary school, because they know they will receive nourishment each day.

“Most of the students at Pedro Nufio walk 1-2 hours per day (each way) to attend the school,” said Joe. “And the seventh-ninth graders travel from farther distances, with some enduring 3-hour walks (each way) on unpaved, volcanic dirt paths.” He continued, “This is an incredible program that efficiently puts starving children, begging on the streets, back into school, breaking a multi-generational chain of poverty.”

Joe recounted a moment about his travels to and from Honduras: When offered a $100 upgrade from coach to first class for the 3-hour flight, he immediately seized on the opportunity to travel first class each way. During the flight there, he ate filet mignon and watched movies in comfort. But on the return flight, he reflected on his time with the families of Pedro Nufio and abstained from a steak and entertainment. “Some students walk 3 hours each way to get to school because they are no longer starving,” he said. “And it only costs $100 to feed one child for a full year; the same cost of my upgrade. That parallel puts so much into perspective, and this entire experience has touched me deeply.”

For more information about Lunches for Learning or how to support its cause, click here: www.lunchesforlearning.org

 

 

 

 

 

February 9, 2017 No Comments

Lynn Roberson recently attended Georgia Defense Lawyers Association’s (GDLA) 14th Annual Judicial Reception, honoring the Atlanta-area bench. The event was held at the State Bar.

Lynn is a former past president of both GDLA and the Atlanta Bar Association. In 2015, the State Bar of Georgia’s Committee to Promote Inclusion in the Profession awarded Lynn with its Commitment to Equality Award.

Lynn is a member of Team Forsling at Miles.

Mediator Lynn Roberson with DeKalb State Court judge Dax Lopez and Anandhi Rajan, partner at Swift Currie McGhee &a Hiers, LLP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Lynn Roberson, Esq. is a mediator and arbitrator with Miles in Atlanta.  She has over 35 years of litigation experience, specializing in premises liability and personal injury matters. To schedule a mediation with Lynn, please call 678-320-9118 or visit her online calendar.

 

January 30, 2017 No Comments
Wendy Williamson, Esq.

by Wendy Williamson, Esq.

No matter the hats your wear, the shoes you stand in, the faces you look into or the space you occupy, you will encounter disputes, difficult conversations, and angry people. When you hit these rough patches, you can either suffer loss and frustration or you can embrace those people and moments as opportunities. I love teaching mediators and managers the practice of mediation and conflict resolution because I know that I am teaching an invaluable life and work skill which is vitally important to progress along modern life’s journey. If you are in the business of managing or resolving disputes, the communication and negotiation skills practiced in mediation training will become your most important and productive tools. Please join me in Civil Mediator Training to begin your challenging and rewarding practice of mediation.

Click here for more information about the training program, or call 678-320-9118 or 912-417-2879.


 

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.

January 30, 2017 No Comments

We’ve recently added a new Civil Mediation Training program at Miles.

The 28-hour civil mediation training course is a practical, comprehensive, hands-on immersion in mediation and the art of managing conflict. The training is available to anyone seeking to learn to resolve conflict, bring closure and build relationships, including professionals in law, psychology, education, social work, human resources, religious entities, and non-profit and corporate management. Upon completion of the training course and the 12-hour practicum, participants will be eligible to register as a mediator.

The training program is led by award-winning mediator and trainer, Wendy Williamson, Esq. Wendy has 30+ years of experience conducting civil and domestic mediations and has trained hundreds of attorneys and professionals in her capacity as a certified mediation trainer.

“I love teaching mediators and managers the practice of mediation and conflict resolution because I know that I am teaching an invaluable life and work skill,” said Ms. Williamson. “If you are in the business of managing or resolving disputes, the communication and negotiation skills practiced in mediation training will become your most important and productive tools.”

The monthly training program will be offered Miles’ locations in Savannah and Atlanta. Tuition is $1050 for the 28-hour course and $350 for the mediation practicum—which is required to register as a certified mediator with the Georgia Office of Dispute Resolution.

“We are excited to announce that the number one mediation firm now offers mediation training courses in Savannah and Atlanta,” said John Miles, founder of Miles Mediation.  “This course is perfect for attorneys, executives or anyone interested in dispute resolution.”

For more information about the training program, call 678-320-9118 or 912-417-2879, or visit: http://milesmediation.com/general-civil-mediation-training/

January 29, 2017 No Comments

Jennifer Grippa will present on effective mediation strategies at The Seminar Group’s upcoming Insurance in the Construction Industry conference on March 23 & 24, 2017. Lynn Roberson will also be in attendance, as another representative of Team Forsling. 

The conference will cover topics from Case Law Updates to current complex issues such as Duty to Defend, Duty to Settle, Additional Insured Endorsements, and OCIPs, CCIPs, WRAPs and Non-Traditional Insurance. It will also address ethical considerations; such as The Cumis Doctrine, Single Versus Multiple Occurrences Under a CGL Insurance Policy, Builders Risk Insurance v. Commercial General Liability Insurance.

The Insurance in the Construction Industry conference is ideal for attorneys and insurance professionals; attendees will receive the following CLE credit:

GA CLE: 9.5 Hours, including 1.0 Ethics
GA Insurance: 12.0 Property Hours
IRMI: 7.0 Reaccreditation Credits
For more information on the conference, click here.

Jennifer Grippa, Esq. is a mediator and arbitrator with Miles in Atlanta.  She has over 15 years of litigation experience, specializing in construction law. To schedule a mediation or arbitration with Jennifer, please call 678-320-9118 or visit her online calendar.

January 19, 2017 No Comments

Today John Miles continued his tradition of serving as a faculty member at the Georgia Defense Lawyers Association’s (GDLA) annual Trial & Mediation Academy.

The GDLA Trial & Mediation Academy is designed for defense lawyers “seeking to become more accomplished and successful at trial or in mediation.”

John is extremely passionate about helping attorneys learn more about successfully trying cases at mediation.

To request John as a speaker at your next event, please email mdickson@milesmediation.com


John Miles is the founder of Miles Mediation & Arbitration Services. To schedule a mediation or arbitration with John, please call 678-320-9118 or visit his online calendar.

 

January 17, 2017 No Comments

by David Nutter, Esq.

One of the great privileges of a mediator is that every day you have a front row seat to a miraculous phenomenon. Process has within itself the power of peace. As warring parties turn their attention to a potential resolution and away from the source of the strife, dramatic changes begin to happen: to the parties, to the other participants, and to their perceptions of the problem itself. The change is as dramatic as water to a parched plant. The trained eye sees it immediately.

What’s the secret? The power is contained within the process itself. The effective mediator is the captain of the vessel, but the process itself is the river that runs to resolution. Why? The answer lies within the human heart. By nature, we are all conflicted creatures. One part craves to be victor in the midst of life’s conflicts; the other part yearns for resolution and peace. The active embrace of a process of negotiation has the potential to unlock the power of peace in each of our hearts. If we step into the process with an open heart to a reasonable resolution, the process itself will unveil the pathway to peace.

I wonder if the same pathway to peace is available to us today as a nation? Certainly! It all depends on our hearts. The reality is that at any given moment, I always think I am right about whatever I think should be done regarding the various issues of public policy facing our land. But after fifty-five years of living on the planet, I have discovered (sometimes quite painfully) that I am not always right. Our governmental processes are designed for us to come together in conversation to work together towards unity. Indeed, historians tell us that the word “parliament” derives from the French word “parler,” which means to speak. Thus, in its ideal, our congress and president and courts are to be a community of conversation leading to consensus. This governmental process is available in the United States and a few other places in the world. Everywhere else is under the dictatorship of some dogma or another.

Now, any student of real history (as compared to the patriotic or unpatriotic fictions we are usually fed in school) is aware that the ideal is never reached perfectly, and in some stages of our history, not at all. But it is our process that always contains within itself the possibility of peace; and thus, it is the process itself—not the particular players or policies of any given moment—that must be preserved. The process is paramount.

I fear that we are in danger today of forgetting that. If you do not like the outcome of the latest election, then there will be another one in two years. Our two-hundred and forty years of practice teaches us that, under changing labels, liberals and conservatives, progressives and pragmatists, centralizers and de-centralizers, moralists and immoralists, have been winning and losing elections and wielding and losing power throughout. And the truth is that they are all sometimes and partially right and sometimes wrong. Most real truth contains some paradox. If we travel too far down a particular trail of truth, we one day wake up in a wilderness of error. But our process, our community of conversation, always provides the needed correction.

Only once in our history did we turn away from our wonderful process and instead choose to exalt our competing dogmas. The results were deadly and devastating. The Civil War is fun to read about but it was an utter disaster to the people who lived and died through it. We have a great governmental process, which I believe is a gift from God to us. May we embrace it and engage one another with mutual respect, turning away from what divides us, and seeking solutions that we all can accept. The policy results won’t ever be perfect, but in the process, we will find again the power of peace.

 


Team Leader David Nutter has successfully mediated and arbitrated over 1,500 cases since joining Miles. His team specializes in complex business disputes, employment, corporate and partnership litigation and dissolutions, and banking and finance. To schedule a mediation or arbitration with Mr. Nutter please call 678-320-9118 or visit his online calendar.

 

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