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 and abroad, and has been appointed as a mediator or special master (for discovery management or settlement implementation purposes) by various federal, state and bankruptcy courts.
Mr. Young has mediated hundreds of individual employment claims, as well as multiple class, collective or multi-employee matters. Many of the employment cases Mr. Young has mediated have involved sensitive personal dynamics as well as difficult business, legal, and fact issues. He has been successful in settling these cases both by facilitating delicate interactions and negotiations and by evaluating risk. Some of the cases have required extensive follow-up efforts in order to reach closure. Many of these cases have involved employers who have "employment practices liability" insurance; in some of these cases, he has had to mediate between the employer and insurer. Mr. Young has also arbitrated various employment disputes, including cases involving contract and discrimination allegations.
Mr. Young speaks Spanish and mediated a sexual harassment claim in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He has also conducted an executive-level employment dispute in Zurich, Switzerland. He was the only private neutral asked by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York to mediate, on a pro bono basis, pro-se employment cases as part of a pilot program.
Mr. Young is a "neutral" member of the College of Labor & Employment Lawyers. In addition, he has spoken about employment dispute resolution at the 1994, 2000, and 2002 New York University Conferences on Labor; 1991, 1996, and 2001 American Bar Association Annual Conferences; and various continuing legal education programs, including those sponsored by the American Law Institute-American Bar Association. He has also published articles about employment dispute resolution in the National Law Journal and the Metropolitan Corporate Counsel. Finally, Mr. Young is a member of the CPR International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution Panel of Distinguished Neutrals and is an elected fellow of the College of Commercial Arbitrators.
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…”
- Class actions, including multiple “wage and hour” actions, one against a major utility alleging racial discrimination in promotions, and another brought by the EEOC alleging age discrimination in the termination of employees, as well as similar claims brought by organized groups of individuals against a particular employer
- Executive or partner-level compensation or equity valuation disputes as well as bonus claims involving, for example, accounting firms, brokerage houses, investment banking firms, and law firms
- Hundreds of individual age, gender, disability, and race discrimination claims with respect to terminations, promotions, and pay, as well as sexual and other harassment claims, under both federal and state law and involving employees in the academic, financial, and professional services sectors, as well as in various types of retail, technology, health care, and manufacturing businesses
- Multiple claims of violations of non-compete and non-solicitation clauses by companies against former high-level employees and the companies that subsequently hired them
- Negotiations between the State of Connecticut and eleven unions relating to pay equity issues, and contract negotiations between the University of Connecticut and the union representing its non-faculty professional employees
- Non-binding valuation of assets being transferred to a pension fund as part of the settlement of breach of fiduciary duty claims brought against the trustees and others
- Whistleblower cases involving multinational and other large corporations, including a number which involved the general counsel of the company as plaintiff
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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