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Lawrence Mills

Lawrence R. Mills, Esq.

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

Lawrence R. Mills, Esq. is a seasoned mediator and arbitrator with over 25 years of experience as a neutral. Larry has extensive experience in resolving employment matters, including discrimination and wrongful termination cases, ERISA claims, and disputes over non-competition agreements. 

Nationally known as a leader in the ADR community, Larry is a Fellow of the College of Commercial Arbitrators, a Distinguished Fellow of the International Academy of Mediators, and a member of the National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals.  As a mediator, Larry is known for being engaged and analytical and for leading parties to effective resolution. As an arbitrator, Larry is known for his fairness and proven ability to manage and adjudicate complex disputes.

Representative Matters

  • Mediated a dispute regarding claims of breach of a covenant not to compete and misappropriation of trade secrets
  • Arbitrated claims for discrimination by a physician against a medical clinic
  • Arbitrated a case involving an employee’s claim for a bonus under an incentive bonus plan
  • Mediated dispute regarding the scope of a non-competition agreement involving a life insurance sales representative
  • Mediated case involving a claim of embezzlement by an executive of a nonprofit organization with a counterclaim of ethnic discrimination
  • Mediated discrimination claim involving misuse of company confidential information
  • Mediated case involving breach of a non-competition agreement and appropriation of trade secrets
  • Arbitrated gender discrimination claim against a software engineering company
  • Mediated case with claims for wrongful termination and withholding of wages
  • Arbitrated case with claims for vested benefits under ERISA by former law firm shareholder
  • Mediated dispute regarding failure of an employer to contribute to a contractors’ “retro fund” of group premiums for industrial insurance
  • Mediated case with claims for contributions to benefit trust under collective bargaining agreement
  • Mediated case involving wrongful termination and age discrimination claims

Honors

  • Recognized as Best Lawyers’ 2018 Seattle Arbitration “Lawyer of the Year”
  • Recognized as a Best Lawyer, Alternative Dispute Resolution Category, Best Lawyers in America, 2015-2016
  • Selected as a Washington Super Lawyer in the field of ADR, 2003-2013

Memberships and Professional Activities

  • Board of Directors, Community Foundation Sonoma County, 2016-present
  • ADR Committee, Sonoma County Bar Association, 2015-present
  • Member, Mediation Society of San Francisco, 2014-present
  • Distinguished Fellow, International Academy of Mediators, 2009-present
  • Fellow, College of Commercial Arbitrators, 2004-present
  • Council Member, American Bar Association Section of Dispute Resolution, 2002-2012
    • Chair, 2007-2008
  • FINRA Panel of Arbitrators, 2002-present
  • Hearing Officer, Washington State Bar Association, 2001-2012
  • Chair, Dispute Resolution Section of Washington State Bar Association, 2001-2002
  • ADR Committee, Federal Bar Association of the Western District of Washington (Rule 39.1 Mediator and Arbitrator), 1998-present
  • Member, King County Bar Association ADR Section, 1998-present
  • Chair of the Board, Healdsburg Forever (community endowment), 2017
  • Board of Directors, Bainbridge Community Foundation 2004-2007 and 2010-2013
    • President, 2006-2007
  • Board of Directors, Bainbridge One Call for All, 2001-2004
    • President, 2003
  • Board of Directors, Bainbridge Public Schools Foundation, 2002-2004

Selected Publications

  • “Effective Mediation Advocacy: How Legal Counsel Can Make Or Break A Settlement,” Daily Journal, 2015
  • “The Appropriate Relationship Between Arbitration, Mediation and Settlement,” ABA Section of Dispute Resolution Magazine, 2015
  • “Exceeded Powers: Exploring Recent Trends in Cases Challenging Arbitral Authority” (with Thomas J. Brewer), Alternatives, September 2013
  • “When Arbitrators Exceed Their Powers,” (with Thomas J. Brewer), Dispute Resolution Journal, April 2009
  • “Vacatur of Arbitration Awards: A Real-World Review of the Case Law,” (with Thomas J. Brewer), Dispute Resolution Magazine, 2006
  • “A Courtroom Lawyer’s Guide to Arbitration,” (with Thomas J. Brewer), Litigation, Spring 2005
  • “ADR Drafting Tips,” Dispute Resolution Magazine, 2002
  • The Arbitration Alternative: Submission Cases, WSBA Litigation News, 2000
  • “Combining Mediation and Arbitration,” (with Thomas J. Brewer), Dispute Resolution Journal, November 1999

  • Partner/Shareholder, Mills Meyers Swartling, 1981-2013
  • Former panel member, American Arbitration Association (Commercial, Construction, and Large Complex Cases, Arbitration Panels, and General and Construction Mediation Panels), 1985-2012
  • J.D., University of Michigan, 1974; Editor-in-Chief, University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform, Vol. 7
  • M.P.P., University of Michigan, 1973
  • B.S.E., with high honors, Princeton University, 1969

Counsel Comments

    • “Larry was direct with the parties and able to answer questions regarding each side’s strengths and weaknesses. Larry is very even handed and analytical.”
    • “Larry is excellent, fair, thorough, and well respected. He makes fair and well thought out rulings.”
    • “Larry is pragmatic. He was interested on focusing on what mattered and not smoke and mirrors. He is able to cut through to the issues and he is respectful and accommodating of parties and counsel.”
    • “Larry has experience as a good smart litigator and has good common sense. He is very approachable and not only can he really cut to the chase, he also is flexible and changes his mind on issues if need be.”
    • “Larry does not give up. He works very hard, even after a session is over to follow up. He is able to follow up in a tactful and effective way.”
    • “Larry was straight forward with the strengths and weaknesses of the case and pointed out options. He has a calming demeanor that isn’t adversarial and is comforting to clients.”
    • “We settled the case which I wasn’t sure would be possible given the parties involved. Larry did a good job of keeping my client focused and on track.”

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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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