Experienced civil litigator

19 years with the Oregon Department of Justice, primarily as a civil litigator and supervising civil litigation. 

Experienced Judge

Over 10 years as a Circuit Court Judge, presiding over many civil cases and civil trials.

Trained and Certified in Civil Mediation

National Judicial College certificate holder, following 40-hour intensive training in Civil Mediation.

My Approach to Mediation

Mediation provides an affirmative opportunity for the parties to take control of their dispute, to work cordially together with their mediator, and to fashion a resolution that provides satisfaction and closure.  The vast majority of civil matters are amenable to this process.  In my experience, most mediations ultimately are successful, even when prospects initially seem dim.

Prior to mediation, I ask for the parties’ agreement to mediate.  The agreement includes expectations for the conduct of the mediation, including that everyone will be treated amicably and with respect.  Generally, I find it useful to begin the mediation all together in the same room, so that everyone can hear each side’s perspective on the issues that need to be addressed.  With the issues identified, it may be appropriate at some point to break out into private meetings ("caucuses") with the separate parties.  What is shared in caucus will be treated as confidential unless the party permits it to be shared.  The entire mediation and all communications within it will be confidential and privileged against any use as evidence in the case.

My goal is to maintain a comfortable and relaxed environment throughout any mediation. I can be flexible with the parties’ logistical and other preferences—including as to timing and breaks—but my general preference is to start at 10:00 a.m. and to continue all day, until at least 5:00 p.m., unless the mediation concludes earlier.  If there is a resolution, we would make a binding record of the terms.

Mediation has been among the most satisfying endeavors in my judicial career.  I would look forward to discussing whether my services might be a good fit to resolve your dispute.

To discuss your case and potentially schedule a mediation, email davidleithmediation@gmail.com