“While the hesitation to engage in in early mediation is understandable, the alternative is not necessarily a default to full discovery, but rather – with the assistance of a knowledgeable  and experienced mediator – a protocol of exchange of information and documentation in a time-controlled environment that will afford the parties the comfort level that they will not be negotiating “blindly” or in a vacuum.”
Richard P. Byrne, Esq. and Honorable Peter B. Skelos, (Ret.)

New York, NY (November 25, 2019) – NAM (National Arbitration and Mediation), one of the nation’s leading providers of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), is pleased to announce that NAM neutrals, Richard P. Byrne, Esq. and the Honorable Peter B. Skelos co-authored article, The Benefits of Early Mediation – The Path Least Taken Requires Commitment, was recently published in the New York Law Journal’s ADR Special Report on Monday, November 25th.

In the article, Mr. Byrne and Judge Skelos draw upon their wealth of experience as litigators, jurists and neutrals, and examine the multiple benefits of early mediation and  how the forum is most effective “if the parties come fully committed to the process and be prepared to take a leap of faith and meaningfully explore an early resolution of their dispute.”  The authors address the importance of both sides choosing the right mediator and ensure that the neutral is known for having the right skill set to work with parties pro-actively.  They further state, “it is incumbent on the parties in their early sessions with the chosen mediator, not to press for what they may want on a “wish list” basis, but what they, in fact, minimally need to support their claims and defenses and engage in a purposeful evaluation of the case.” Other relevant matters addressed in the article include the client’s cost and exposure, drafting a written protocol with specific deadlines and a full commitment from the clients to ensure compliance.

About the Authors

Richard P. Byrne, Esq. has successfully mediated issues in a wide variety of specialty areas, including commercial disputes, employment discrimination claims, employment contract disputes, wage and hour/FLSA claims, construction matters, complex personal injury and property damage claims, insurance and reinsurance matters, risk transfer disputes and life, health and disability claims. For the fifth consecutive year, he was voted one of the Top 3 Mediators in the country by the 2019 National Law Journal Annual Reader Rankings Survey, and for the third year in a row he was named a National Law Journal 2018 Alternative Dispute Resolution Champion, as part of a select group of only 46 nationwide. He was also voted a Top 10 Mediators by the 2018 New York Law Journal Annual Survey for the fifth straight year.

Judge Peter B. Skelos’ illustrious career includes 11 years spent as an Associate Justice of the Appellate Division of the New York State Supreme Court, Second Judicial Department where he served until his retirement in 2015. Honorable Skelos’ ability to approach matters fairly and in an unbiased manner combined with his even temperament and incisive questioning make him extremely well-suited to the role of arbitrator / mediator. Further, as a former appellate judge, he has the ability to fairly and expertly identify and resolve disputed questions of law. In 2019, for the fourth year in a row, Judge Skelos was voted a Top Ten Neutral in the New York Law Journal Best Of Survey and in 2018, was named a National Law Journal Alternative Dispute Resolution Champion, as part of a select group of only 46 nationwide, for the second straight year.

Both Mr. Byrne and Judge Skelos are available to arbitrate and mediate cases nationwide.

Meet the Neutrals