Hats, Bracketology and PSAP

By Nancy Norelli

The Dispute Resolution Section CLE and Annual Meeting, held in the midst of March Madness, was a big success. Donna Savage and her team put together an outstanding program. All the speakers presented interesting ideas and gave the attendees the value of their decades of conflict resolution experience.

You can still view the program and get CLE and CME Credits.  Video replays are set in Cary on May 31 and Concord on June 14.  Sign-up here.

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Dispute Resolution Commission Quarterly Meeting

The North Carolina Dispute Resolution Commission (NCDRC) held its quarterly meeting on March 1, 2019, at the Washington Duke Inn in Durham.  The meeting, led by the Commission’s chair, the Honorable William A. Webb, was extremely productive as well as informative.  Each of the NCDRC’s numerous committees reported on work completed this past quarter including, but not limited to, proposing a new draft version of Standard VII, approving courses for CME credit, and reviewing multiple applications for certification. The NCDRC also adopted a new policy regarding mediators responding to complaints, and is making plans to celebrate Conflict Resolution Week this coming October.  The NCDRC constantly strives to better the practice of mediation within our courts by providing certified mediators with the tools they need to succeed. For more information on the NCDRC and the actions taken by the Commission this past quarter, please visit our website at www.NCDRC.gov, and check out our News and Articles link located within the Mediator’s Toolbox.


Spotlight On Frank Laney

DR Spotlight is a Q&A series that focuses on Dispute Resolution Section members.

Frank Laney is Circuit Mediator for the U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals. He lives in Cary with his wife, Anne, who is principle flute with the N.C. Symphony. Laney teaches Mediation Advocacy at Campbell Law School and goes to Belarus yearly to work with mediators there.





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Spotlight on Kate Deiter-Maradei

DR Spotlight is a Q&A series that focuses on Dispute Resolution Section members.

Kate Deiter-Maradei is a mediator in Raleigh at Deiter Mediation. Kate has been mediating full time for almost six years after practicing as a litigation attorney for 10 years with Teague Campbell. She has been on the NCBA Dispute Resolution Section Council for several years and is currently the secretary. Kate enjoys travel, is passionate about adoption and enjoys working with Essential Partners to conduct facilitated dialogues between law enforcement folks and African-American community leaders in the Triangle.



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Running Blind in Multi-Party Mediations

By John Ong

Running blind in a multiparty mediation may seem, at first glance, to be dangerous.  In reality, negotiating without knowing the amount that co-defendants are offering, i.e. being “blind” is a frequently used tactic in larger construction cases as it expedites the process of negotiations.  By purposefully choosing not to be informed about the nature and extent of offers being made by their co-defendants, parties are faced with individually making their own decisions about value and risk. Collectively, this often resolves a case.

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Spotlight on Will Oden

DR Spotlight is a Q&A series that focuses on Dispute Resolution Section members.

Will Oden lives in Wilmington, North Carolina, and has practiced with Ward and Smith, P.A. in the areas of employment law and workers’ compensation since 2004, when he graduated from law school.  He also serves as a mediator in employment and workers’ compensation cases.  According to Will, any virtues he possesses come directly from his parents; the fault for the rest lies with him.



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Collaborative Training At The Grandover Feb. 6-7


The NCBA has offered five basic training courses in Collaborative Law Practice in the past, and is offering the next one Feb. 6-7 at the Grandover in Greensboro. Click here to view the brochure with all the details.

The Early Bird registration deadline is Jan. 16. Click here to register.

This 14-hour training is for any lawyer who wishes to add the collaborative approach to their practice, including both family lawyers and other civil lawyers, including those practicing in the areas of construction, employment, small business, probate, as well as litigation. Because collaborative is practiced entirely out of court, it is not necessary to have training or experience as a litigator to become a collaborative lawyer.

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Why Clients Like Mediation

By Frank Laney

As a lawyer/mediator, I have had very few opportunities to participate in a mediation as a litigant. But I did once, which gave me some insight into why clients like mediation.

My wife and I were selling our house. A buyer looked at it, decided he wanted it, signed a purchase contract and put down a $1,000 deposit. There were some small repairs he wanted, which we hired a contractor to complete. Then a week or so later he decided he did not want to buy the house after all. Through our realtor we learned that our house was near where his ex-wife and children were going to live, but once his new girlfriend found out, she demanded that he not buy a house so near the ex-wife. All fine and understandable, but not a legal reason to break the contract, so I got to keep the $1,000. He threatened to sue, but after some persuasion, I got him to agree to mediation.

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Work Worth Doing: Alternative Dispute Resolution

By Colleen Byers

It is easy in today’s political and cultural environment to feel overwhelmed and completely helpless to affect any change. Conflict abounds. In a society focused on retributive justice, where traditional litigation approaches are the norm, advocating options for conflict resolution that fall on the alternative dispute resolution spectrum can often feel counter cultural. At times and among certain audiences, suggesting the collaborative law process is perceived as radical. Notwithstanding the inordinate amount of time, energy and effort that John Sarratt and the Board of Directors of the North Carolina Civil Collaborative Law Association (NCCCLA) have spent educating about and advocating for the use of the collaborative law approach in any civil dispute, I am still often on the receiving end of blank stares, quizzical looks, and frowns when I discuss the collaborative law process with other lawyers and clients. When this happens, it is easy to become discouraged, and the lawyerly ability to over analyze kicks into high gear. I worry that other litigators and even clients will perceive me as weak when I suggest alternative dispute resolution options rather than traditional litigation. At times, I wonder whether my zeal for conflict resolution has come on too strong. Then I remember those magical moments that fuel my passion for ADR …

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You’re Invited to Celebrate Conflict Resolution Week

By Nancy Black Norelli

Dear NC Mediators,

On Thursday, Oct. 18, the North Carolina Dispute Resolution Commission (NCDRC) will host a reception in honor of Conflict Resolution Week. To kick off our celebration week, there will be a special proclamation given by Chief Justice Mark Martin. The reception will take place at the N.C. Judicial Center (901 Corporate Center Drive, Raleigh) from 8:30 – 10 a.m.

The first annual Up and Coming Mediator Award will be presented by NCDRC staff to Mr. Ketan Soni in honor and appreciation of his dedication and service to mediation in North Carolina.

Please reply to this email by Wednesday, October 10, to let us know whether you plan to attend.

RSVP by Wednesday, October 10: YES – I plan to attend   |   NO – I am unable to attend