Fair, quicker, less expensive resolutions with more control by the parties should be the objectives of both arbitrations and mediations. Using my 45 years of experience as a trial lawyer and 30 years as a neutral, I employ a flexible, creative, collaborative approach to both ADR processes to assist the parties in achieving these goals.
Commercial and construction arbitrations pose ongoing challenges to insure a fair expeditious outcome. These challenges require both experience in handling the issues that arise and familiarity with the subject matter. As both an arbitrator and litigator I have handled a broad range of significant commercial disputes throughout the country.
I work to guide the parties and their attorneys in understanding, their goals and options so they can reach a satisfactory solution. I focus the parties on planning and preparation before the session, patience and understanding at the mediation.
The approach to arbitration and mediation varies significantly from litigation. Attorneys and clients should address these processes with a different mindset. I work with law firms, companies and other organizations in finding the optimum program to prepare for and advocate at an arbitration or mediation.
Eric Wiechmann brings 40 years of experience representing clients as a trial lawyer in a wide variety of sophisticated, complicated disputes and governmental investigations in over 30 states and the District of Columbia. 30 years of serving as an arbitrator and mediator and service in law firm management including as Firmwide Managing Partner of McCarter and English LLP to his neutral practice, he is a fellow of the College of Commercial Arbitrators, an AAA arbitrator and mediator serving on several national panels, a CPR Distinguished Neutral, a member of the National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals, a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and a FINRA arbitrator and mediator.
He treats each arbitration and mediation as a unique problem needing a customized solution to most effectively address the party’s needs. Every arbitration requires a balancing between the parties need to effectively and fairly present their case and the underlying purpose of arbitration to provide an efficient, expeditious and economical process to resolve the dispute. To accomplish this Eric fully prepares by not just studying the factual and legal issues of the dispute, but tries to understand the interrelation of the parties and their attorneys. He collaborates with the attorneys to design, within the arbitrable rules, the most effective way to prepare for and present the case. He believes in a flexible, creative approach to the process and reinforces this with continuing communication with the parties.
Eric uses a similar approach in his mediations. As this is one of the few times the parties have control of their dispute, he works to obtain their trust, understand their needs and goals and helps them evaluate both the strengths and weaknesses of both sides case and their options. To achieve these ends, he believes in approaching the mediation with preparation, patience and persistence (see Mediation Philosophy). There is no set time in the mediation process where a party needs to finally decide whether he will settle or not.