ADR Section News & Tips October 2018
Message From the Chair
For many of us, the last quarter of the year is a whirlwind as parties, courts and insurers seek to reach year-end with as many closed cases as possible. Coupled with that activity are the “demands” of families/friends/clients to participate in the many fun holiday events that start with Halloween and continue until we ring in the New Year in 2019. 

For this month’s message, I would just like to focus attention on keeping your balance during this potentially hectic time. 
The Florida Bar has multiple tools to help from practice aids by LegalFuel to wellness seminars that encourage us to maintain lives that address our needs as well as those whom we serve. 

Of course, the ADR Section can also help. This month we publish the inaugural edition of The Common Ground, the section’s semi-annual magazine. Take a look and see what the current editors, Michelle Jernigan and Natalie Paskiewicz, have put together for your perusal.  Much is happening in the world of dispute resolution and your section is a great place to keep up with it all. Keep up with us on Facebook, Twitter and our monthly newsletter as well and we feel confident you will be better informed than most as to what is happening in the topic area.  

The end of the hurricane season is fast approaching as well as the most pleasant weather of the year for our state. I hope you can take advantage of it!  

Christina Magee, Chair
Brevard Mediation Services, Satellite Beach
Five Ways to Think Differently About Stress
Practicing law can be stressful. But more than the circumstances in which we find ourselves, it is our thoughts about them that cause most of our stress. When you change your perception of a situation, you can change the way you feel about it. Move past feeling threatened by stress and instead view it as a challenge and an opportunity. Check out this great article sent to us by ADR Section Health & Wellness Committee member Adam Myron and learn five ways you can start to think differently about stress. 

If you'd like to get involved with the Health & Wellness Committee, please contact Chair Patrick Russell. H ave a wellness tip to share? Hashtag it #healthwellnessADR.
YLD Calls for Volunteers for FEMA Legal Hotline
YOU can make a difference and help those who have been impacted by the storm. Please share this information about  The Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division 's call for FEMA Disaster Relief Hotline attorney volunteers to provide basic legal services for low-income individuals in non-fee generating cases. The most pressing need is for volunteers to return calls.

To volunteer, complete this form and review the FEMA Disaster Assistance Manual for Legal Services Advocates. For more information, visit the YLD FEMA page.
Recent MEAC Opinions
Special thanks to ADR Section member Christy Foley of The Law Office of Christy L. Foley in Winter Park for providing the opinion summaries.

2018-002 . Mediator adds own research to discussion. Addresses whether, during the course of a mediation, a mediator should mention an appellate decision he found in his own research that would significantly help the case of one party but that would also significantly hinder the case of another party. In essence, MEAC stated that the mediator may not mention the appellate decision he researched (if the parties don't mention it themselves) because presenting evidence that would clearly favor one party would breach the mediator’s requirement to remain impartial. Additionally, MEAC stated that the parties' self-determination would be violated since neither party mentioned that appellate decision or raised that decision as an issue. 

2018-001 . Mediator includes disclosure statement about mediator’s role in final agreement. Addresses whether a mediator can include a statement in the parties' final agreement that says: the mediator stayed neutral during the mediation, did not give anyone legal advice during the mediation, did not make decisions for the parties, and only acted as a scrivener when drafting the agreement (not as an attorney/legal advocate). In essence, MEAC stated that including such language in the final agreement could make the parties feel coerced into signing off on those terms if they want a written agreement to settle their dispute. MEAC also stated that such language adds substantive issues to the written agreement that the parties didn't raise themselves and those terms only benefit the mediator, which violates the parties' right to self-determination. Therefore, such a statement shouldn’t be included in the parties’ final agreement. 

2017-021 . Mediator repeats words to deaf party. Addresses whether a mediator can restate one party's words to another party in the case where Party A is on the phone and Party B is deaf, but can read lips. The mediator wanted to restate what Party A said so that Party B could read his lips and participate in the mediation. In that case, MEAC essentially said that a mediator cannot perform dual roles as an interpreter and a mediator. An interpreter or translator would be needed in such a case.

2017-019 . Mediator is subpoenaed to testify. Addresses whether a mediator who is subpoenaed to testify about a mediation may file a motion to quash the subpoena. In essence, MEAC stated that such a motion could be filed in order to protect the confidentiality nature of a mediation. However, the mediator could appear in court and object in person, if he wanted to do that instead of filing a motion to quash the subpoena. MEAC also stated that a mediator in this position should consult an attorney (who's knowledgeable about the topic) to get more specific advice. 
ADR Section EC Meeting and CLE During The Florida Bar Winter Meeting
The next in-person ADR Section Executive Council meeting is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. on Jan. 17, 2019, at the Doubletree by Hilton Orlando at SeaWorld. Every section member is invited and welcome to attend. We value your input and involvement.

Also, a grievance training CLE seminar is tentatively scheduled for the same afternoon. We will provide registration details as soon as they are available. We hope to see you there!
Get Involved With the Section: Join a Committee
The ADR Section has numerous active commmittees that welcome your involvement. Please contact the chairs/co-chairs listed below if you want to learn more.

Clearwater Bar Golf Classic
The Clearwater Bar Association invites you to participate in its Annual Golf Classic. This year's annual tournament will take place Nov. 9, 2018 and will be played at Cove Cay in Clearwater. The tournament offers challenges and fun for all golfers. You don’t have to be an avid golfer to enjoy this first-class event. 

Interested? Please contact event chair Natalie Paskiewicz for more details at (727) 827-7705 or .
Call For Authors and Speakers
The ADR Section is seeking volunteers to contribute to our CLE events and publications. We welcome new perspectives! If you have a recent blog post or speech that you can submit as an article for an upcoming issue of the ADR biannual magazine (newly renamed "The Common Ground") please contact Michelle Jernigan or Natalie Paskiewicz. If you have a CLE topic idea you'd like to present, please contact Kim Torres or Kathy McLeroy or download and complete this short survey and email it to Chair-Elect Kim Torres.
Member News
Cordover Collaborative Law Book Published. The American Bar Association has recently published “Building A Successful Collaborative Family Law Practice,” co-edited by ADR member from Tampa Adam B. Cordover and Los Angeles Attorney Forrest (Woody) Mosten, author of multiple books on mediation, collaborative practice, and unbundled legal services. This anthology brings together experts from across the field in collaborative divorce to provide practical tips and advice on how to market, structure, and expand your collaborative practice. Contributing authors include Robert J. Merlin, who oversaw the enactment of the Uniform Collaborative Law Act in Florida, David Hoffman, Harvard Law Professor, and Ronald D. Ousky, former President of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals. The book may be purchased at on the ABA Publishing Website.
F or more on the collaborative process, download the podast from a recent ADR Section CLE and learn from collaborative law experts how the process can be applied in probate and trust disputes and other areas of law. Course 2931 is a one-hour, Q&A-format presentation by attorneys Juan C. Antúnez and Robert J. Merlin and moderated by attorney, mediator and arbitrator A. Michelle Jernigan . The CLE will educate participants about the collaborative process and challenge them to use it as a dispute resolution tool in their practices.

Approved for 1.0 Marital & Family Law and 1.0 Wills, Trusts & Estates CLE credits. ADR Section members register for only $50.
Submit Your News
The ADR Section monthly newsletter will publish updates about your firm, recent speaking engagements, awards, announcements and more. Please email your news to ADR Section Communications Consultant Lisa Tipton at .
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