James Ryan

Hon. James V. Ryan (Ret.)

JAMS Mediator, Arbitrator and Referee/Special Master

Case Manager
Julia Pyle
T: 617-228-9168
F: 617-228-0222
One Beacon Street, Suite 2210, Boston, MA 02108

James V. Ryan 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 Ryan has successfully mediated and arbitrated a wide variety of disputes including hundreds of construction disputes since stepping down from his position as an Administrative Judge in 1992. Judge Ryan has been appointed to serve as a Master by both the federal and state court for purposes of fact-finding, discovery oversight, and settlement facilitation. He has authored a guide to mediation and arbitration practice, and has served as an instructor in numerous seminars on mediation, arbitration, case management, and ethics.

Representative Mediations

  • Appointed to serve as mediator to resolve numerous claims arising between the owner and the general contractor during the course of an ongoing public construction project
  • Mediated claims and counterclaims between homeowners, design professionals, general contractor and subcontractors, including breach of warranty, poor workmanship, undisclosed subsurface conditions, change orders for extra work, and delay damages
  • Mediated claims and counterclaims between the owner, design professionals, general contractor, and multiple subcontractors concerning the failure of the windows installed in a commercial office building
  • Mediated claims between owner and general contractor, subcontractors, and material suppliers regarding multiple environmental illness claims brought by building occupants
  • Mediated settlement of numerous claims involving public construction projects involving state buildings and highways, municipal schools and building projects, and public authorities
  • Settlement of claims by building owner against eleven defendants including the general contractor, multiple subcontractors, and material suppliers arising out of the complete failure of the building structure

Representative Arbitrations

  • Sole arbitrator in dispute between general contractor and subcontractor involving claims of breach of contract, illegal termination, abandonment, unfair trade practices, and default under a payment bond
  • Sole arbitrator in dispute between general contractor and subcontractors involving their respective liability for change orders, poor workmanship, and delay damages
  • Sole arbitrator in dispute between owner and general contractor concerning claims of poor workmanship and breach of warranty, and counterclaims of defective specifications and extra work beyond the scope of the contract
  • Special Master appointed to hear evidence and report findings of fact in dispute between owner, general contractor, and subcontractor regarding the sufficiency of a computerized climate control system installed during building renovations
Completed Virtual ADR training conducted by the JAMS Institute, the training arm of JAMS. 

  • Recognized as a Best Lawyer, Alternative Dispute Resolution Category, Best Lawyers in America, 2006-2014
  • Best Lawyers in America, 2014
  • Senior Mediator and Arbitrator, JAMS, 1992-present
  • Administrative Judge, Massachusetts Department of Industrial Accidents, 1986-1992
  • General Counsel, Massachusetts Senate Committee on Ways and Means, 1981-1986
  • Foley, Hoag & Eliot, Boston, specializing in civil litigation, labor and employment 1979-1981
  • Deputy Counsel, Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, 1978-1979
  • Law Clerk, Chief Judge Alan M. Hale, Massachusetts Appeals Court, 1977-1978
  • J.D., Northeastern University School of Law, 1977
  • B.A., cum laude, Boston College, 1972

Counsel Comments

    • “Judge Ryan was superb.”
    • “Judge Ryan helped bring about a fair settlement in a hotly contested case.”
    • “Judge Ryan was on top of this case from the beginning of the mediation process right to end. Fantastic job!”
    • “The Mediator Jim Ryan did an excellent job of getting the parties together.”
    • “Jim Ryan was masterful. Everything else worked very well, as expected.”
    • “Judge Ryan was excellent. He touched base before the date of the mediation which I have not had happen before.”
    • “As always, Judge Ryan was prepared and engaged for the entire process.”
    • “Judge Ryan was knowledgeable about subject matter, in order to assist confirming the law to my client, and negotiating to a reasonable number.”
    • “This matter had multiple parties and issues which made it difficult to navigate during discovery and depositions; however, Judge Ryan was able to keep everyone focused on moving the matter to an ultimate resolution satisfactory to all parties.”
    • “Jim Ryan is a terrific mediator - smart, personable, focused.”
    • “Judge Ryan was patient, persistent and corralled about 40 folks into a settlement. As always, he did this while being gentlemanly and gracious.”
    • “Judge Ryan was excellent as usual.”
    • “The neutral spoke with the parties before the hearing. This helped limit the issues.”
    • “Judge Ryan did a great job. He is an ultimate professional and a natural gentleman. His relational ability created a very easy climate for my antsy client to enter with safety.”



Practice Areas

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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