Theodore Katz

Hon. Theodore H. Katz (Ret.)

JAMS Mediator, Arbitrator, Referee/Special Master, Neutral Evaluator

Case Manager
Patrick Palmer
T: 212-607-2788
F: 212-751-4099
620 8th Ave., 34th Floor, New York, NY 10018

Theodore H. Katz 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.


Hon. Theodore H. Katz (Ret.) joined JAMS after serving for 21 years as a United States Magistrate Judge in the Southern District of New York -- one of the busiest and most important federal courts in the nation. During that period, he exercised the full range of judicial responsibilities in over 5,000 complex and other cases. In his capacity as a United States Magistrate Judge, Judge Katz supervised pretrial discovery, addressed procedural and dispositive motions, presided as the trial judge, and conducted settlement conferences in hundreds of employment-related cases involving individual and collective claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act, discrimination claims under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Rehabilitation Act, and Americans with Disabilities Act, as well as claims under ERISA and claims for bonus compensation, breach of the duty of loyalty, and breach of contract.

Most notably, Judge Katz developed a reputation as an extraordinary facilitator of settlements. He hosted settlement conferences in more than 2,500 cases, ranging across the full spectrum of the federal court docket.

Judge Katz is known as a patient, thoughtful, and creative settlement judge. He places great emphasis on the human, as well as the business and financial dimensions of disputes, and enjoys engaging with the participants.

Judge Katz served on the ADR Committee of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. He was on the adjunct faculty at Columbia Law School for six years.

ADR Experience and Qualifications

Served 21 years as a United States Magistrate Judge, presiding over trials and several thousand settlement conferences, supervising pretrial discovery, hearing dispositive and procedural motions, in the following areas:

  • Admiralty
  • Antitrust
  • Art Theft
  • Business/Contracts
  • Civil Rights
  • Class Actions
  • Complex Commercial
  • Construction
  • Employment/Labor/ERISA
  • Entertainment
  • Fair Labor Standards Act
  • Financial Markets
  • Government Regulation
  • Insurance
  • Intellectual Property: copyright, trademark, unfair competition, and patents
  • Professional Liability
  • Securities Law
  • Simple and Mass Torts

Since joining JAMS in 2012, Judge Katz has served as an arbitrator and mediator in numerous  employment-related matters, some of which include:

Representative Matters

  • Mediated claim by executive for severance pay and buy-out options in acquired company
  • Mediated employment action for bonus and other compensation in the financial industry
  • Mediated action against employee in financial industry for breach of duty of loyalty and theft of trade secrets
  • Mediated case involving plaintiffs who alleged wrongful denial of overtime pay due to misclassification as exempt employees
  • Mediated employment contract case arising from plaintiff’s termination “without cause”
  • Mediated FLSA and State-law wage claims brought on behalf of class of interns in entertainment industry
  • Mediated case involving alleged violation of the Fair Labor Standards and Connecticut Minimum Wage Acts
  • Mediated numerous cases involving alleged violations of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act
  • Mediated age discrimination case under the New York State Human Rights Law
  • Mediated sex discrimination action under Dodd-Frank
  • Mediated claim of disability discrimination relating to college campus access and accommodations
  • Arbitrated case involving alleged age discrimination in media company
  • Arbitrated case involving attorney’s entitlement to retirement benefits and enforceability of non-compete provision in partnership agreement
  • Served on arbitration panel in proceeding by bank executive contending he was wrongly terminated for cause and seeking unpaid compensation and severance benefits
  • Arbitrator in proceeding involving allegations by executive in fashion industry of unlawful retaliation under federal, city and state employment laws
  • Arbitrator in proceeding brought by executive in national media company alleging breach of contract and fraudulent inducement
  • Arbitrated claim by terminated executive for advancement of defense costs in connection with SEC action
  • Arbitrator in FLSA proceeding for overtime wages denied on basis of outside sales exemption
  • Arbitrator in proceeding against major media firm and television network for termination based on alleged racial discrimination
  • Arbitrator in proceeding by bank executive for alleged retaliation because of voicing risk and compliance issues to senior management
  • Completed Virtual ADR training conducted by the JAMS Institute, the training arm of JAMS
  • Recipient, Fortune Society’s Helen L. Buttenweiser Award
  • Adjunct Faculty, Columbia Law School
  • Member, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York Committees on Alternative Dispute Resolution, Judicial Improvements, Pro Se Litigation
  • Member, U.S. District Court, Advisory Panel that Developed Pilot Project Regarding Case Management of Complex Civil Cases
  • U.S. Magistrate Judge, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, 1991-2012
    • Served as Chief Magistrate Judge
  • Director, Prisoners’ Rights Project of the Legal Aid Society
  • Law Clerk to the Hon. Robert L. Carter, United States District Judge
  • J.D., Columbia Law School, 1973 (Editor, Columbia Law Review; Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar)
  • B.A., magna cum laude, Brandeis University, 1968



Practice Areas

Available nationwide


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