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Harry Low

Hon. Harry W. Low (Ret.)

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

Case Manager
Patricia Usak
T: 415-774-2616
F: 415-982-5287
Two Embarcadero Center, Suite 1500, San Francisco, CA 94111

Harry W. Low 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.


Justice Low has earned a reputation for skillfully handling a wide variety of complex insurance issues. Prior to 2000, he mediated and arbitrated numerous insurance related disputes and served as Special Master and referee at JAMS.

From September 2000 to January 2003, Justice Low served as California's 38th Insurance Commissioner after appointment by Governor Davis and unanimous confirmation by the Legislature. He was asked to restore respect and confidence in the California Department of Insurance after the previous Commissioner resigned. Through his leadership, Commissioner Low helped gain for California the reputation of one of the best insurance regulators in the nation.

As a Presiding Justice of the California Court of Appeal, he has written a variety of opinions on insurance law. Justice Low is very knowledgeable in interpretation of insurance law and in the regulation of insurers. He has experience in interpreting insurance policies as they relate to coverage issues, duties of insurers, and reinsurers. He has worked closely with insurance consumer groups, policyholders, agents and brokers, third party claimants, and insurance carriers. He can assist in resolving disputes in insurance insolvency issues. Justice Low is the Arbitrator for the Surplus Lines Association and served as Trustee to Golden Eagle Insurance Company insolvency proceedings.

Justice Low is available to assist attorneys in trial and appellate cases. He has served as Special Master, referee, trustee, and provisional director.

Prior to serving as California's Insurance Commissioner, Justice Low settled numerous insurance related disputes and has served as a Special Master on insurance coverage and damage disputes.

Representative Matters

  • Evaluator/Consultant on insurance regulatory matters
  • Mediated successfully equitable contribution indemnification issues among over 30 insurance companies
  • Successfully mediated health insurance disputes, disability claims, and professional liability
  • Successfully mediated many bad faith claims including issues of mold damage, fire damage, construction defect, broker commissions, personal injury, and pollution
  • Umpire in appraisal of insurance loss disputes
Completed Virtual ADR training conducted by the JAMS Institute, the training arm of JAMS.

  • BAJI Committee Member, 2003-Present
  • Harold T. Yee Lifetime Achievement Award from Asian Inc., video honoring Justice Low, September 2015
  • Spirit of Excellence Award, American Bar Association, 2002
  • Judge Lowell Jensen Public Service Award, Boalt Hall School of Law, UC Berkeley, 2000
  • Distinguished Alumni Award for extraordinary contributions to the legal profession, Boalt Hall Alumni Association, UC Berkeley, 1993
  • President, San Francisco Human Rights Commission, 1999-2000
  • President, San Francisco Police Commission, 1992-1996
  • National President, Appellate Judge Conference of the American Bar, 1991
  • National President, Chinese-American Citizens Alliance, 1981-1991
  • President, California Judges Association, 1978-1979
  • Board member, Center for Judicial Education and Research
  • California Judicial Council
  • President, Center for Pacific Rim at the University of San Francisco
  • Founding Chairman of the Board, The Chinese American International School
  • Lectured extensively throughout the United States, Asia, and Europe
  • Chinese Historical Society of America interview with Justice Low, YouTube, September 2013
  • "Fire Extinguisher," Daily Journal, ADR Profile, February 2, 2013
  • Insurance Commissioner, State of California Department of Insurance, 2000-January 2003
  • Presiding Justice, California Court of Appeal, 1983-1992
  • Judge, San Francisco County Superior Court, 1974-1983
  • Judge, San Francisco Municipal Court, 1967-1974
  • Commissioner, Worker's Compensation Appeals Board
  • Deputy Attorney General for California in the Civil and Tax Division
  • J.D., University of California, Berkeley School of Law (formerly Boalt Hall School of Law)
  • B.A., University of California, Berkeley



Practice Areas

  • Appellate
  • Arbitration
  • Business/Commercial
  • Employment
  • Environmental
  • Health Care
  • Insurance
  • Personal Injury/Torts
  • Professional Liability
  • Real Property
  • Special Master/Discovery Referee
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