J. Kathleen Learned

Judge J. Kathleen Learned (Ret.)

JAMS Mediator and Arbitrator

Case Manager
Michele Wilson
T: 206-292-0457
F: 206-292-9082
1420 Fifth Ave., Suite 1650, Seattle, WA 98101

J. Kathleen Learned is available to conduct cases virtually. JAMS is equipped to provide virtual ADR services on a variety of online platforms, including Zoom, Microsoft Teams, WebEx, and more.


Judge J. Kathleen Learned (Ret.) has earned a reputation for her hard work, thorough preparation, and quick mastery of complex and difficult matters, with a fair, gracious, and good humored but no-nonsense style.

ADR Experience and Qualifications

  • Since joining JAMS in 2003, Judge Learned has had a high rate of resolution success; during her prominent 14-year judicial career on the King County Superior Court, she was involved with the settlement of numerous civil matters in a wide range of areas in after hours settlement conferences

Representative Matters

  • Business/Commercial: resolved many contract matters with issues ranging from commercial leases to shareholder/partnership agreements. As an arbitrator, Judge Learned has decided cases involving consumers and various companies over fraud, misrepresentation, and non-payment of claims
  • Class Actions: handled a large employment benefits case against the county, and cases involving consumer products, financial institutions, and telecommunications companies
  • Construction: claims arising from major construction projects involving multiple parties, insurance liability and contractor liability disputes involving large condominium and other large building projects, construction defect matters involving residential construction
  • Consumer Protection: from small to large matters
  • Employment: disputes involving claims of wrongful termination; discrimination based on disability, gender, and race; breach of contract; ADA; hostile work environment; constructive dismissal; pay and hour issues; and non-compete. While a prosecuting attorney, she tried a ground breaking affirmative action case for the county
  • Environmental: pollution cleanup insurance coverage claims including one of the largest multi-state claims
  • Estate/Trust: a large estate dispute involving multiple out of state parties and significant assets. Has also resolved cases with multiple parties, complex issues, and large estates
  • Family Law: dissolutions involving small to multimillion dollar estates
  • Partnership Dissolutions: including claims of trade secret violations
  • Personal Injury: wrongful death cases, auto accidents, slip and fall
  • Product Liability: claims involving safety devices and warning adequacy, drugs, industrial machinery
  • Professional Liability: medical, legal, claims of trustee, breach of public duty doctrine, breach of fiduciary duty in administering retirement plan
  • Real Estate: has mediated several condemnation matters involving local municipalities, also resolved matters involving property line disputes
  • Toxic Torts: asbestos cases and other environmental and work place hazards and exposures
Completed Virtual ADR training conducted by the JAMS Institute, the training arm of JAMS.

  • Judge of the Year, King County Washington Women Lawyers, 1997
  • Award of Merit, ADR section of the Washington State Bar Association, 1994
  • Chief, King County Superior Court Civil Department, 1997
  • Chair, Judges ADR Committee, King County Superior Court, 1990-1996
  • Member, Delay Reduction Task Force, King County Superior Court, 1987-1989
  • Co-Founder & Board Member, Northwest Women’s Law Center, 1975-1981 (Co-operating attorney, 1975-1988)
  • Member, ADR Council, Washington State Bar Association, 1993-1995
  • Member, Mediation Section, King County Bar Association
  • Member, Supreme Court Gender and Justice Implementation Committee, 1990-1993
  • Member, Medical/Legal Committee, Seattle-King County Bar Assn., 1985-1988
  • Arbitrator, King County Mandatory Arbitration Panel, 1985-1988
  • JAMS "Remedies in Arbitration" Training, 2009
  • JAMS Mediation Training, 2003
  • Judge, King County Superior Court, 1988-2002
  • Partner, Schroeter, Goldmark and Bender, 1979-1988
  • Deputy, King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, (Civil Division, 1977-1979; Criminal Division, 1975-1977)
  • Staff Attorney, State of Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau, 1974
  • J.D., with honors, University of Wisconsin School of Law, 1974 (Am. Jur. Award in Criminal Law)
  • M.A., Political Science, University of Washington, 1967
  • B.A., Political Science, University of Washington, 1965

Counsel Comments

    • “Judge Learned was wonderful, patient and perfect for this case”
    • “I would use Judge Learned again without reservation.”
    • “Judge Learned was great [I] didn’t think this case would settle but it did.”



Practice Areas

  • Arbitration
  • Banking
  • Business/Commercial
  • Class Action/Mass Tort
  • Construction Defect
  • Employment
  • Environmental
  • Estates/Probate/Trusts
  • Family Law
  • Governmental/Public Agency
  • Insurance
  • Intellectual Property
  • Personal Injury/Torts
  • Professional Liability
Available nationwide


This page is for general information purposes.  JAMS makes no representations or warranties regarding its accuracy or completeness.  Interested persons should conduct their own research regarding information on this website before deciding to use JAMS, including investigation and research of JAMS neutrals. See More

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