William Hartgering

William E. Hartgering

JAMS Mediator, Arbitrator and Referee/Special Master

Case Manager
Deborah Stewart
T: 312-655-9192
F: 312-655-0644
71 S. Wacker Drive, Suite 2400, Chicago, IL 60606


Concurrent with his national reputation as a mediator over the past 24 years, Mr. Hartgering has been chosen to arbitrate dozens of complex matters, some of which are described below.

Arbitrating alone and with former judges, experienced lawyers, as well as subject matter experts, Bill has served on panels as the neutral arbitrator and as a party appointed arbitrator. Clients and lawyers describe him as a “hot bench” who carefully prepares every case, is actively involved in the process, writes concise yet thorough opinions, and is unusually dedicated to providing a thoughtful decision under the facts of the case. As noted by one counsel, “Even though he ruled against us, my client and I appreciate his dedication and would use him again.”

Representative Matters

  • Civil Rights
    • “African American Farmers” Class Action. More than 100 written awards in connection with the arbitration consent decree process of the nation’s largest civil rights settlement
  • Complex Patent, Information Technology
    • Unique, 3-Party “Baseball” Process Renders $44 Million Award. Bill’s process design enabled all parties to tailor a complex conflict management process to their specific needs, ending a 10-year battle (see “ADR Ends Long Dispute - 'Baseball' Technique Nets SPX $44 Million Award,” National Law Journal, January 21, 2002)
    • Selected as a Member of the Copyright Arbitration Royalty (CARP) Panel
  • Construction Defect
    • State of the Art Public Stadium. Member of 3-person panel (with two former judges), written opinion ended a bitter, complex, document intense dispute among contractors
    • “Baseball Arbitration” involving the contractor and owner of a major office building
    • Various matters with owners, architects, engineers, contractors, and party experts
  • Employment
    • Executive Discharge, ADA, Race, Age, Gender Discrimination. Several matters arising out of being chosen as arbitrator for a particular case, or as part of settlement of class actions involving securities, communication technology, and automobile companies, and as part of various company ADR programs involving management and staff
    • Administration of a Consent Decree. Court appointment, working with employer and EEOC to design, implement, and manage a racial discrimination claims process
    • Sarbanes-Oxley Whistle Blower/Alleged Retaliation. Three matters involving alleged effect of whistle blowing on existing and former employees (one arbitration, two mediations)
  • Environmental Issues
    • Superfund Arbitration. U.S. v. Outboard Marine, 78 C-1004. Arbitrator in matter which involved a variety of contractual and insurance related issues arising out of a Lake Michigan harbor remediation. The matter settled before the arbitration was held, but did involve substantial work with the parties on discovery and various procedural issues
    • $40-$70M “Clean Up Allocation,” 50+ year old Chemical Plant Site. “Allocator” in matter involving five separate disposal areas, with different combinations of nine PRP’s at each site (EPA was a “participant”). Six years of bitter litigation created widely divergent views on key issues including “Aceto,” alter ego and successor liability, relevancy of volumetric data, effect of a paucity of documentary data, substantial “orphan share” and toxicity issues. Initially selected as the allocator to work with a former judge and subsequently co-mediated the matter to successful resolution in approximately four weeks
  • Franchise Dealer/Manufacturer/Magnusson-Moss/Real Estate
    • Pending, Dealer Termination. Member of 3-person panel
    • Dealer incentive program, contract, joint marketing and add point issues. Numerous matters with dealers, manufacturers and unique industry joint arbitration panels
    • Dispute involving European rights to commercial/residential real estate franchise
    • Numerous arbitrations involving “matters of first impression” under the Magnusson-Moss Warranty Act
  • Malpractice
    • Nine-Figure Claim naming Third Party Administrator Involving Fortune 300 Company. Neutral arbitrator on 3-person panel involving subject matter and industry experts
    • Legal, Accounting, Design Professional Alleged Malpractice. Named to arbitrate all disputes arising under numerous mediated settlement agreements
  • Mergers/Acquisitions/Dissolutions
    • Neutral arbitrator on 3 party panel in matter alleging concealment, fraudulent inducement, breach of warranty regarding financial performance, and breach of employment contract issues
    • Medical Technology/Employment Issues. Sole arbitrator in bitter matter spanning more than a decade of complex business transactions involving medical technology, allegations of fraud, and employment issues among previous friends
    • Named to arbitrate all disputes arising under M&A settlement agreements
    • License Issues. Chosen to arbitrate matter involving the alleged assignment of a license
  • Securities
    • Acquisition of Waste Handling Company, Sole Arbitrator. Stock and asset valuation issues and scope of payment for future clean up
    • Sole Arbitrator in various matters involving clients and brokerage firms involving unauthorized trading, churning, and related issues
Completed Virtual ADR training conducted by the JAMS Institute, the training arm of JAMS. 

  • Honors
    • Ranked among the Top 10 ADR Neutrals in Illinois, Leading Lawyers, 2014
    • Recommended “Leading Lawyer” Commercial ADR Law
  • Memberships & Professional Activites
    • Former Adjunct Faculty, Northwestern University
      • Kellogg School of Management
      • Pritzker School of Law
    • Trainer, 30 forums in 15 states, Hong Kong, Latvia, and Lithuania
    • Member, Regional Utility Mediation/Arbitration Outage Allocation Panels
    • Active Member, ABA Section of Dispute Resolution and SPIDR (now ACR), 1981-present
    • Member, Unitarian Church of Evanston
  • ADR Profile
  • J.D., Northwestern University (Law Review, First Place, Moot Court Competition; National Moot Court team), 1975
  • B.S., cum laude, Political Science, Claremont McKenna College, Claremont, CA, 1972
  • Born 1949, Two children, Extensive travel in Japan, Hong Kong, South Africa, Asian/European Russia, Eastern/Western Europe, Caribbean, Central America, and each of the 50 United States

Counsel Comments

    • "Bill is an extraordinarily quick study, who thoroughly prepares and thus is very credible in the discussion of strengths and weaknesses. He understands my business, the law and kept us focused on the practical issues driving our dispute.” 

      -from Feedback: Secrets of Successful (& Unsuccessful) Mediators 2007 Studies II and III




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