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Robert May

Hon. Robert E. May (Ret.)

Case Manager
Lisa Abrantes
T: 619-237-0801
F: 619-236-9032
401 B Street, Suite 2100, San Diego, CA 92101


Judge May, who served on the San Diego County Superior Court bench for 16 years before joining JAMS, is sought after for his expertise in resolving complex business and commercial cases in a wide range of industries. Counsel hold him in high regard for his fairness, ability to keep cases moving toward settlement, and calm demeanor he brings into even the most contentious matters.

An experienced arbitrator, mediator, and special referee, Judge May has resolved disputes involving breach of contract, fraud, conversion, breach of fiduciary duty, breach of lease, and class action wage dispute issues.

Representative Matters

  • Arbitrated law firm’s claim against business for legal fees and costs owed for services
  • Arbitrator on dispute involving breach of contract claims over attorney fees and costs
  • Breach of contact arbitration involving claims against martial arts studio for negligence, fraud, self-dealing, unfair business practices, breach of fiduciary duty, and conspiracy
  • Breach of contract mediation between concrete company and county
  • Breach of contract mediation between two dentists and their respective corporations
  • Mediated dispute between bank and individuals over alleged breach of promissory notes
  • Mediated dispute involving breach of contract and negligence claims between apartment complex and property management company
  • Mediation involving dissolution of dental business
  • Mediator for dispute between company and bank over alleged non-payment of invoices
  • Mediator for dispute over condominium mortgage
  • Nominated for Jerrold Oliver S. Award for service to the construction community, West Coast Casualty, 2008
  • San Diego Defense Lawyers Commendation, 1999
  • Ernie Wideman Memorial Sportsmanship Trophy, San Diego County Bar Association and Barristers Club, 1979
  • California Judges Association, Executive Board, 2001-2003
  • San Diego County Judges Association, Vice President, 1999
  • San Diego Superior Court Executive Committee
  • San Diego Superior Court Education & Retreat Committee, Chairman, 1999
  • Barristers Club, 1974-1986; President, 1978; Treasurer, 1977
  • San Diego County Bar Association; Director, 1978-1981; Vice President, 1981; Delegate to Annual Bar Conference, 1976-1982; Chaired, 1980 Delegation
  • Adjunct Professor, University of San Diego School of Law, 1993-2001
  • Presented alternative dispute resolution techniques to Egyptian judicial officers in Cairo, Egypt, 2001
  • Appeared on Primerus Law Hour regarding Alternative Dispute Resolution and Construction Defect Litigation, December 1998 and September 2000
  • Frequent lecturer and panelist for local bar associations and a wide variety of organizations including: Mealey's, CJER, Association of Defense Counsel of Northern California and Nevada, Rutter Group, West Coast Casualty Service, Defense Research Institute, Western Building Show, Consumer Attorneys of San Diego and California, Trucking Industry Defense Association, MC Consultants, and forensic organizations
  • ADR Training: Mediating the Complex Case, Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution, Pepperdine University School of Law, 2006
  • Judge, San Diego Superior Court, 1987-2003
  • Associate Justice, Court of Appeals, sitting by assignment, 1998
  • Judge, Municipal Court, El Cajon Judicial District, 1986-1987
  • Assistant United States Attorney, San Diego, 1983-1986
  • Stebleton, Waters & May, 1977-1982
  • McInerney, Milchen & Frank, 1974-1977
  • Deputy District Attorney, San Diego County, 1970-1974
  • Clerk for the Hon. Robert Staniforth, the District Attorney's Office, and private attorneys, 1969-1970
  • Claims Adjuster, Government Employees Insurance Company, 1966-1967
  • Lieutenant, U.S. Navy, 1962-1966
  • J.D., University of San Diego School of Law, 1970
  • B.A., University of Florida, 1962



Practice Areas

  • Arbitration
  • Business/Commercial
  • Class Action/Mass Tort
  • Construction Defect
  • Insurance
  • Personal Injury/Torts
  • Professional Liability
  • Real Property
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