March 27, 2017

Circulation of Draft Award - What are your thoughts?

Should an arbitrator circulate to the parties a draft award (with explanation that it represents tentative conclusions) and provide an opportunity to respond in efforts to: (i) create compromise or conclusion on an issue or (ii) highlight issues as to law or fact, even towards misunderstands of the applicable law or faulty reasoning?

Please provide your thoughts/comments below.

March 23, 2017

DR and ComFed Sections collaborate on March 13, 2017, in Fordham symposium on Best Practices from Bar to Bench.

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March 22, 2017

SAVE THE DATES: May 19-21, 2017 - Commercial and Federal Litigation Spring Meeting

Please see the following program flyer to register:


March 20, 2017

A Parallel Between Celestial Navigation & Mediation

By Giulio Zanolla, Esq.

Celestial Navigation Mediation.pdf

Giulio Zanolla is the owner and founder of Zanolla Mediation, an Adjunct Professor at the CUNY Law School Mediation Clinic and Mediation Mentor for the Brooklyn Law School Mediation Clinic. Giulio is a member of the panels of ADR neutrals of the American Arbitration Association (AAA), the International Institute for Conflict Prevention & Resolution (CPR) and the Mediation Program of the District Court for the Southern District of New York. Please visit for more information.

ADR Insights: From the Q&A Section of the NYSBA Resolution Roundtable Blog

In August 2015, Resolution Roundtable, the blog site for the Dispute Resolution Section of NYSBA, began posting weekly questions to seek feedback and insights on various alternative dispute resolution (ADR) topics. Traffic to the blog site thereafter greatly increased by ADR users, providers and panelists, with varied responses depending on the topic. Topics included arbitrator selection, disclosures , depositions, ethics, ADR legislation and third-party funding.

Due to the popularity of the site and to promote academic discourse, the Dispute Resolution Section decided to publish the below compilation of all questions and responses, with attribution, from August 3, 2015 to February 21, 2017.


DR Roundtable Pamphlet.pdf

March 19, 2017

Advocate engaged in unethical conduct - What are your thoughts?

If an arbitrator sees that an advocate has engaged in unethical conduct, can/should the arbitrator discipline counsel?

Please provide your thoughts/comments below.

February 26, 2017

Class Action Waivers - What are your thoughts?

Should arbitral institutions handle arbitrations with class action waivers?

Please provide your thoughts/comments below.

February 18, 2017

Deposition Transcript Only - What are your thoughts?

What is your position regarding the presentation of evidence at a Hearing by deposition transcript only (the witness does not appear either in person or by video)?

Please provide your thoughts/comments below.

February 12, 2017

Third-party Funding and Ethics - What are your thoughts?

Does third-party funding in connection with arbitrations present ethical problems?

Please provide your thoughts/comments below.

February 11, 2017

How Did I End Up in Small Claims Court? A Misapplication of the Consumer Rules

By Alexander Bachuwa

R-9. Small Claims Option for the Parties

If a party's claim is within the jurisdiction of a small claims court, either party may choose to take the claim to that court instead of arbitration as follows:

(b) After a case is filed with the AAA, but before the arbitrator is formally appointed to the case by the AAA, a party can send a written notice to the opposing party and the AAA that it wants the case decided by a small claims court. After receiving this notice, the AAA will administratively close the case.

I represent consumers in arbitration claims and encountered, what I believe, is a misapplication of the consumer rules. Specifically, I had a claim against a corporation where the amount in question was for a low dollar amount. I filed a claim with the AAA and the company utilized R-9(b) to move the matter to small claims.
On its face, this is an acceptable application of the rules. In reality, this strategy will deprive consumers the actual opportunity to seek relief. First, many small claims courts do not allow attorneys to participate in the proceeding. This leaves the consumer on his own to prosecute his claim, something that he will rarely do given the demands of the process versus the amount in controversy. If an attorney is allowed to participate in the proceeding, a consumer will be hard pressed to find a locally licensed attorney who would represent him in a low value claim. If this loophole is not closed, corporations will benefit tremendously as consumers, like my client, will forsake the claim and the money owed will remain with the company. While claims for $5, $10, or $100 may seem petty, the aggregate of these claims when multiplied by millions of aggrieved consumers is anything but.

Alexander Bachuwa has extensive international experience working abroad in China and Mongolia, focusing on alternative dispute resolution in the arena of corporate and commercial law. He has an MBA in Global Finance from Thunderbird School of Global Management, a JD from Arizona State University, and a BA in economics from University of Michigan. Alexander is licensed to practice in New York, Arizona, and is a Foreign Registered Attorney in Mongolia. He has also been admitted to all New York and Arizona federal courts. Alexander is conversational in Arabic, Spanish, and Mandarin.