Robert Smith

Questions & Answers

Q:  How many cases has Mr. Smith mediated?
A:  Hundreds.  Please see the list entitled Representative Mediations under “About R. M. Smith” on this website.

Q:  Where?
A:  In many, many places.

Q:  What kinds of cases has Mr. Smith mediated?
A:  Mr. Smith has conducted mediations in a wide range of matters. These include:

  • The merger of a FTSE-200 company with another company for about $1-billion;
  • Sexual harassment matters, such as claims against a nationwide food chain;
  • A dispute concerning ownership of visual images;
  • The export of high-technology machinery to the People’s Republic of China;
  • Alleged racial discrimination and wrongful termination by a Fortune 500 employer;
  • Many other types of employment claims, including physical and psychological disabilities, race, gender, failure to accommodate, harassment, leave denials, failure to promote, workplace environment, performance evaluations, commission disputes, and workplace violence;
  • Multi-party inter-insurance disputes;
  • A dispute between churches;
  • Ownership of computer codes;
  • Alleged libel by a financial institution;
  • Disputed ownership of internet domain names;
  • Mediation among co-counsel as to their strategies in a lawsuit;
  • 10-party real estate lease dispute;
  • Hospital vs. health-care administrator dispute;
  • Construction dispute involving a power plant;
  • Dispute between telecommunications companies;
  • Dispute between utility and customer company;
  • Franchise disputes;
  • Probate a dispute among heirs;
  • Admiralty — seaman’s injury;
  • Many construction disputes involving responsibility among subcontractors and the general contractor;
  • Various environmental disputes.

Q:  What litigation and trial experience has Mr. Smith had?
A:  Mr. Smith had more than 20 years of trial and litigation experience — including at Heller, Ehrman, White & McAuliffe, the Bank of America (where he managed international litigation worldwide), and his own commercial litigation firm. He served as an Assistant US Attorney in San Francisco.  He was a member of the United States delegation to the World Court in US. v. Iran.  He was also an adjunct law professor teaching the mediation of intellectual property and international disputes.

Q:  How long has Mr. Smith been mediating?
A:  For 20 years.

Q:  Is Mr. Smith’s practice plaintiff-oriented or defense-oriented?
A:   Neither. Mr. Smith no longer litigates. He has for a long time been a full-time neutral.

Q:  What style of mediation does Mr. Smith employ–facilitative, evaluative, directive or transformative?
A:  It depends on the wishes of the parties and his own judgment tutored by experience and intuition.

Q:  Does Mr. Smith have a bias as a mediator?
A:  Yes, he has a bias in favor of resolving the dispute.

Q:  Has Mr. Smith mediated in other languages?
A:  Yes, in French , German, and Spanish. Mr. Smith’s French is fluent, his German acceptable, his Spanish is more limited.  He studied Russian at university.

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