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Fred Butterworth

Fred R. Butterworth, Esq.

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


Fred R. Butterworth, Esq. has extensive experience resolving disputes as mediator, arbitrator and special master. Mr. Butterworth, a former partner with the law firm of Keller Rohrback for nearly 40 years, has a great deal of civil litigation experience with insurance, real estate, corporate law, mergers, and dissolution issues. He focused his practice on insurance defense and served as in-house counsel for an aviation electronics manufacturer. Since joining JAMS in 1997, he has assisted in the resolution of hundreds of cases in areas such as personal injury, property damage, business, real estate, construction issues, employment and trust & estates.

Mr. Butterworth utilizes a common sense and practical approach to problem solving which, combined with his calm demeanor, puts the parties at ease to work through difficult negotiations. He follows up on cases that do not settle the day of mediation to keep the parties moving toward resolution.

ADR Experience and Qualifications

  • Handled over 500 arbitrations and mediations
  • Regularly participates in seminars as presenter or panelist on dispute resolution subjects

Representative Matters

  • Business/Commercial: resolved via mediation and arbitration many business/commercial disputes, for example: business dispute between brother and sister owners of a franchise restaurant; breach of contract between former partner and remaining partners of airplane parts company over compensation due and reimbursement for parts supplied when company started up; dispute regarding dissolution of partnership of motorcycle dealership; international companies in a dispute over termination of contract rights to a commercial product and intellectual property; family members’ disagreement over terms of transfer of burger franchise territory; dispute over vacation rental in Maui that did not live up to the terms and conditions as promoted by the rental company
  • Construction Contracts: handled numerous cases in both arbitration and mediation involving the interpretation of terms in construction contracts
  • Construction Defect: mediated disputes involving claims against builders, contractors, subcontractors and architects for a variety of defect claims such as failure of materials to perform to specifications, faulty design, building house on wrong lot, water intrusion, faulty installation of lighting equipment, etc.
  • Court Appointed Referee: appointed as Referee in a contested family dispute over jointly owned real property
  • Employment: mediated employment disputes involving terms of employment agreements, wrongful termination, age discrimination, and breach of contract
  • Estate/Probate: mediated several estate/probate matters involving issues such as: claims made by daughter of decedent against her brother, the PR of the estate, that he used undue influence to receive gifts of two parcels of real property from their father prior to his death; dispute among beneficiaries of a trust regarding fiduciary duties of trustor and co-trustees; creditor’s claim against estate where value of the claims exceed the value of the estate
  • Family Law: dispute over cross-country travel arrangements for minor child; custody dispute between parent and grandparents of minor child; meretricious relationship dissolution where parties have one minor child and father lives out of the country and the parties also owned two parcels of real estate; parenting plan dispute where one parent requests to move out of state and child has stated where they would like to live against wishes of one parent; mediated several matters including a family dispute involving a contested guardianship concerning an elderly parent
  • Insurance: umpired several insurance coverage cases involving vehicle damage and repair costs
  • Personal Injury/Property Damage: mediated and arbitrated hundreds of personal injury and property damage cases involving claims such as: bad faith claim involving mold; fingers amputated while using heavy machinery; wheel chair accident; injuries sustained on an elevator; slip and fall case involving city property; employee’s claim of injury while driving work vehicle; worker’s compensation claim arising out of physical contact between employees resulting in claims of physical and psychological damage; and many personal injury cases arising out of vehicle collisions of every type and nature
  • Real Estate: determined status of relationship between a real estate sales person and the broker; disagreement between landlord and tenant over hair salon--tenant claims there is a verbal 25-year lease with the former owner of building and the landlords want to sell the building; claims for attorneys’ fees and costs arising out of an eminent domain matter; claims of fraud and criminal profiteering regarding allegedly fraudulent real estate appraisal reports; property line dispute between neighbors over a fence
  • King County Bar Geisness Award, 1993
  • King County Superior Court (Juvenile Court Conference Committee, Judge Pro Tem, Arbitration Panel, Early Disposition Panel, Congestion Committee)
  • Seattle Municipal Court (Judge Pro Tem), Lake Forest Park Municipal Court
  • Juvenile Court Conference Committee Advisory Board, and many other committees and panels
  • Member, Washington State Bar Association and Seattle-King County Bar Association (President, 1988-1989), Washington Defense Trial Lawyers (past president)
  • Author, "Preserving Mediation’s Greatest Attribute: Simplicity," Washington State Bar News, March 2004; "Mediation Magic," Washington State Bar News, April 2007
  • JAMS "Remedies in Arbitration" Training, 2009; Arbitration Workshop, JAMS Institute, 2004; Special Master/Discovery Referee Workshop, JAMS Institute, 2006
  • Partner, Keller Rohrback, 1958-1997
  • Corporate Counsel, Avtech, a major supplier of aviation electronics, Seattle, 1960-1997
  • Assistant Attorney General, State of Washington, 1956-1958
  • U.S. Army Reserve, Lt. Col. Retired
  • J.D., University of Washington, 1956



Practice Areas

Available nationwide


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