Mr. Young has successfully mediated or otherwise served as a neutral in numerous commercial and business-related matters, including contract disputes in many industries (especially the financial services industry) and has also successfully mediated or arbitrated many securities and commercial tort matters.
More generally, since joining JAMS as a full-time neutral in 1989, Mr. Young has conducted over 1,750 complex or multi-party mediations and arbitrations in over thirty states (as well as in Puerto Rico) and abroad (including in Rome, Madrid and Zurich). Among the 1,750 matters have been approximately 250 arbitrations, appraisals, or other binding dispute resolution proceedings. He has been appointed as a mediator or special master (for discovery management or settlement implementation purposes) by various federal, state and bankruptcy courts. In addition to serving on the JAMS and JAMS International panels, Mr. Young is a member of the International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution (CPR) Panel of Distinguished Neutrals and is a member of the panels of the Beijing Arbitration Commission, Singapore International Mediation Center, Afghanistan Centre for Commercial Dispute Resolution and Center for Arbitration and Dispute Resolution in Israel. He is also an elected fellow of the College of Commercial Arbitrators.
See Mr. Young's arbitration biography for more information about his work as an arbitrator.
Mr. Young has been recognized by various publications and members of the legal community in New York, and more broadly, as a skilled and widely respected mediator and arbitrator. For example, in 2016 through 2021, Chambers and Partners identified Mr. Young as one of the seven mediators in the United States recognized in Band One and in 2016 noted “his deft, subtle handling of mediations…”
- Mediated in Madrid -- conducting a portion of the mediation in Spanish -- a loan restructuring between a South American airline and the syndicate of European banks which financed its leasing of airplanes, and also mediated other matters involving insolvent or near-insolvent entities
- Mediated in Rome a dispute over a supply contract between an Israeli company and its British supplier
- Mediated multiple lawsuits brought by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) relating deficient loans and loan practices at banks that failed as part of or following the 2008 financial crisis
- Mediated multiple claims relating to the value of derivatives arising out of the Lehman bankruptcy proceeding
- Mediated multiple “Madoff”-related claims, including those against third party fund managers whose investors held positions in the Madoff fund and appointed by the court to arbitrate privilege issues arising out of the Madoff bankruptcy proceeding
- Mediated multiple claims relating to commercial or residential backed mortgage securities
- Mediated multiple commercial landlord-tenant disputes, such as a number of cases involving large law firms as tenants
- Mediated or arbitrated corporate merger and acquisition-related disputes -- all of which raised contract interpretation, valuation and/or accounting issues -- in the liquor distribution, sports equipment design and manufacturing, glass manufacturing, and computer software and consulting industries, among others, and also mediated various fraudulent conveyance claims arising out of leveraged buyouts or similar transactions
- Mediated or arbitrated numerous contract disputes between suppliers and customers, as well as between joint venture partners, in a wide variety of industries, including energy, software, healthcare, telecommunication, data services, manufacturing, and investment banking and advising
- Mediated various disputes among the owners of small businesses, including service and manufacturing companies and professional partnerships
- Served as a co-court appointed special master -- for discovery management, mediation, and settlement implementation purposes -- in a class action against a law firm with respect to tax shelters
- Served as a court-appointed discovery referee/mediator in a dispute between the purchaser and seller of a television station regarding post-closing price adjustments
- Served as a court-appointed mediator in "plan of reorganization" negotiations in multiple complex Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings, one involving a $110 million cellular telephone company and two raising lender liability claims in addition to difficult business issues
- Served as a neutral in other types of disputes that either involved business entities or raised legal issues or fact scenarios related to those raised in commercial disputes, including multiple securities-related class actions, including claims by investors in public companies regarding alleged misstatements or omissions in financial statements and similar claims by sellers of firms against the public companies that acquired them, numerous construction-related claims involving all types of structures, all types of parties and all types of issues including contract interpretation and insurance coverage questions, and numerous employment-related matters, including executive-level contract and compensation disputes
Completed Virtual ADR training conducted by the JAMS Institute, the training arm of JAMS.
Selected Awards and Honors
- Band One Mediator, Chambers and Partners, 2016-2022
- International Who's Who In Insurance and Reinsurance, 2014-2020
- International Who's Who in Commercial Mediation, 2013-2020
- Mediator of the Year, NYC, Best Lawyers, 2018-2019
- Arbitrator of the Year, NYC, Best Lawyers, 2020-2021
- ADR Champion, American Law Media, 2017
- Recognized since 2006 by various law-related periodicals as one of the "Best Lawyers in America," as a "Super Lawyer," and by Law Dragon as "One of the Top Neutrals/Private Judges in the U.S."
- “The FAA Statutory Framework” and “Discovery,” co-authored with Cliff Bloomfield, Esq., PLI Press Treatise Arbitrating Commercial Disputes in the United States, September 2018
- “Binding Alternative Dispute Resolution and Insurance Claims,” with Cliff Bloomfield, Esq., ABA Section on Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Resolving Insurance Claim Disputes before Trial, June 2018
- Member of Board of Glimmerglass Festival, 2019-Present
- Member of Board of Legal Services NYC, 2017-Present
- Chair of the Board of Legal Services NYC, 2014-2017
- Board of Directors of the JAMS Foundation, 2013-2018
- Vice-Chair of the Board of Legal Services NYC, 2011-2014
- Interim Executive Director of Legal Services NYC, 2010-2011
- JAMS Board of Directors, 2000-2010
- Litigator, Public and Private Sectors, 1978-1989
- J.D., cum laude, Harvard Law School, 1978
- A.B., with honors, Brown University, 1975
- “The technology [for our virtual session] worked seamlessly. I was impressed at how effective it was, and with Mr. Young’s facility with it. The breakout rooms worked very well.”
- "In confirming an award issued by Mr. Young in a complex “finder’s fee” dispute arising from a cross-border commercial real estate investment, Justice Alice Schlesinger (N.Y.S. Supreme Court, N.Y. County) stated the following on the record: “... Because in what I would characterize as Mr. Young’s thoughtful and well-reasoned award... Also because of the way in which Mr. Young handled this whole process in a truly conscientious way ... So, I find that this was a really serious attempt to do the legal thing as well as the right thing...”
- "Indeed, throughout the (very) long day, [he] remained a constant beacon of coolness. [His] thoughtful, kind demeanor was key in developing a rapport with my client, who was sensitive to the issues she was discussing. [He] gently prodded her, challenged her, and at times honestly agreed with her, all the while building up a level of trust. At the end of the day, she had immense trust in [him] and [his] judgment. Most of all, [he was] well prepared in respect of the facts and legal issues, and challenged all sides to see things in a clearer, objective light. This helped bridge differences. Ultimately, and on several occasions, [he was] able to pull us all back from the abyss."
- "Michael Young was knowledgeable, prepared, assiduous, and persistent ... He didn't introduce his personality into the mediation, but separate and apart from that he was a friendly and engaging person. Besides that, he is ... always prepared to help outside the time that is allotted for the case."
- "First of all, he's very smart, very fair, really a straight shooter. Understands the tougher issues and can give an experienced evaluative opinion -- only after he's listened for at least half the session or at least he's absorbed the key issues. His persistence is amazing."
- "He's engaging, yet calm and professional. He is confident in his ability to solve cases and interacts well with different personalities."
- "His settlements are the result of his (a) hard work in preparing for the mediation; (b) intelligence and ability to grasp quickly not just the core issues in dispute, but also the nuances of complex matters that must be addressed to achieve a workable solution; and (c) his enormous patience in dealing non-stop and effectively with the attorneys and parties involved."
- "Michael is not afraid to tell the parties what he thinks about any given position or claim they are making, yet will follow the party's lead as to what information is to be communicated to the adversary."
- "He never knocks heads together, but he will present an evaluative position. He knows when the parties need to call it a day, and will follow-up to resolve final points after a few days to think things through."
- "Michael has a way of keeping the door open. ... Michael will make sure the lines of communication are still open and the parties are trying."
- "Michael is a genuinely nice guy. People like to be around other people whom they like -- especially someone you have to spend hours with and in a high stakes situation."
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