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ADR in Divorce: Fast-Tracking Resolutions

Level: Advanced
Runtime: 63 minutes
Recorded Date: September 20, 2021
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  • The Benefits of Mediation in Matrimonial and Family Law Disputes
  • Arbitration – A Centuries Old Solution
  • Limitations of Arbitration in Matrimonial Law and Family Law
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution – A Jurisdictional Perspective
  • Mediation – Goals and Roles
  • Mediation Procedures
  • Q & A
Runtime: 1 hour, 3 minutes
Recorded: September 20, 2021

Difficulty: Experienced Attorneys (Non-Transitional)


You may never come to fully trust your adversary, but that doesn't mean parties can't mutually engage in a good faith and ethical negotiation process-a simple and honest approach that is often derailed by parties looking to gain an advantage. Too many good faith negotiations are sabotaged by parties using a variety of bad faith negotiation tactics, many of which are repeated all too often and can ultimately prevent a settlement. Our panelists will provide tips on how to use Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) in matrimonial matters and family law disputes.

This program was recorded on September 20th, 2021.

Provided By

American Bar Association
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Hon. Jeffrey D. Lebowtiz (Ret.)

Hearing Officer
NAM - National Arbitration & Mediation

Justice Jeffrey D. Lebowitz has spent most of his legal career as a member of the judiciary. With over 21 years on the bench, he has served as a Judge in several different courts throughout the City and State of New York. Self described as a “settler by natural instinct”, and an avid supporter of Alternative Dispute Resolution, it is a natural progression for him to apply those skills in the mediation and arbitration setting.

Appointed to the bench by former Governor David A. Paterson and Mayors David N. Dinkins, Rudolph W. Giuliani and Michael Bloomberg, Judge Lebowitz spent the majority of his time serving as an Acting Supreme Court Justice in the Civil Parts of the Supreme Court, Queens County. During this time, he handled an extensive calendar of diverse civil matters with at least 50% of his caseload comprised of Medical Malpractice cases. He regularly presided over complex medical malpractice cases involving damages in the multi-million dollar range. In addition to medical malpractice cases, he presided over a varied caseload of complex litigation including labor law, torts, products liability, insurance disputes, zoning, real estate and matrimonial matters.

Well regarded by those attorneys who appeared before him, the 2013/2014 New York Judge Reviews describe him as “…fair and neutral”. Interviewees “…praised his legal knowledge and negotiating skills” stating “They’re very good” and “‘He’s street-wise and very capable’ in this area”. Others said “He’s got great judicial temperament”… “You’re lucky to be in front of him”…. and “Judge Lebowitz listens closely to their arguments and keeps an open mind“. Prior to stepping down from the bench, he was given the highest recommendation by the Independent Judicial Screening Committee of the Second Department.

Since his retirement Judge Lebowitz has been “special counsel” to a prominent Long Island firm where he is a member of the Litigation and Family Law departments. As an active practitioner, he has appeared frequently in both state and federal courts. His caseload has been comprised of complex commercial litigation and family law matters.

As a mediator and arbitrator with NAM, Judge Lebowitz is available to hear all forms of commercial litigation.

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Elena L. Greenberg, Esq.

Hearing Officer, Matrimonial Law Specialist
NAM - National Arbitration & Mediation

With more than 35 years of experience practicing matrimonial law, Elena L. Greenberg, Esq. is a highly regarded litigator and mediator. She is respected for her abilities to navigate and resolve matrimonial matters and understands the sensitive nature and sometimes heart wrenching and overwhelming issues that accompany divorce proceedings. Ms. Greenberg has handled hundreds of matrimonial and family law cases and has successfully achieved resolutions that are customized to best meet the short and long-term needs of the whole family.

Her approach includes helping parties identify, negotiate and collaborate on an agreement that is acceptable to everyone while she focuses on resolving the conflict with care, respect and compassion. Her end goal is to assist the parties to move on financially and legally and believes that dissolving a marriage through the court is not only time consuming and emotionally draining, but costly, and it is better to leave the terms and conditions of the divorce in the hands of the parties rather than a judge.

Ms. Greenberg’s strong advocacy for Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) coupled with her training and deep experience handling matrimonial and family law matters makes her well-suited for settling cases in the ADR forum. She is a certified mediator in New York and California, having completed courses at Hofstra University School of Law, Institute for the Study of Conflict Transformation. She also received training and completed certification in collaborative law by the New York Association of Collaborative Professionals. She has been a matrimonial fee dispute arbitrator since the 1994 and has served as an adjunct faculty member for Hofstra Law School Trial Advocacy from 1999 -2003. In addition to her role as a matrimonial arbitrator and mediator with NAM (National Arbitration and Mediation), she is a partner at one of the top matrimonial law firms on Long Island.

Ms. Greenberg has lectured to the Nassau County Supreme Court Judges and has presented CLE programs to attorneys at the New York State Bar Association and the Nassau County Bar Association. She is a member of the Grievance Committee of the New York State Bar Association, Tenth Judicial District, a founding member and Past President of the New York Family Law American Inns of Court in Nassau County, the Former Chair of the Technology and Practice Management Committee of the Nassau County Bar Association, and a member of the New York State Bar Association, Family Law Section.

Ms. Greenberg is rated “AV” in the Martindale-Hubbell law directory and has consistently been named a New York “Super Lawyer”. She has also been listed in Pulse Magazine’s Top Legal Eagles – Long Island and named as one of the Top Ten Leaders of Family Law and Women of the Law on Long Island by Digital Press.

Elena L. Greenberg, Esq. is available to arbitrate and mediate matrimonial and family law matters throughout New York State.

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Hon. Jeffrey S. Brown (ret.)

Hearing Officer
NAM - National Arbitration & Mediation

Hon. Jeffrey S. Brown joins NAM after having served as a Justice of the Supreme Court, Tenth Judicial District, Nassau County. While on the bench, he presided over hundreds of jury trials and settlement conferences in a variety of case types that include personal injury, premises liability, negligence and tort cases including hundreds of motor vehicle accidents. Judge Brown also has significant experience handing both medical malpractice and nursing home litigation. The judge has also presided over real estate matters including landlord /tenant disputes, and negotiations of land use cases.

Judge Brown’s distinguished judicial career began as a County Court Judge. Prior to serving on the bench, Justice Brown was Law Secretary to Hon. Allan L. Winick, Supreme Court Justice, County Court Judge.

According to the New York Judge Reviews, attorneys that have appeared before Justice Brown praised him for being “a gentleman” and “very courteous to lawyers and the parties”; ”He is very proactive in trying to get settlements”; “He is very approachable, very hands-on and very accommodating, as far as working with you towards a resolution.”; “Treats everyone fairly, you would not find a litigant who doesn’t like him, even if they lost and that’s the standard for assessing whether a judge is fair or not.”

As a practicing attorney, Judge Brown had a successful career as an associate for a prominent New York law firm where his practice focused on personal injury litigation with an emphasis on auto cases, slip and fall, trip and fall, workplace injuries and medical malpractice in State and Federal court. Most of the personal injury matters he handled for the firm involved the Federal Employees Liability Act (FELA) cases against the transportation industry.

Justice Brown has a reputation as a top-notch and approachable trial judge. Recognized as proactive, hard-working, detail-oriented, he has the natural skills and extensive legal experience required to assist parties in reaching resolutions. These attributes combined with his 13 years of experience mediating hundreds of cases on the bench in the areas of personal injury, medical malpractice and matrimonial disputes including valuation and division of assets, businesses, property; family support and maintenance.

Justice Brown is available to hear cases throughout the State of New York.

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Samuel J. Ferrara

Executive Partner
Abrams, Fensterman, Fensterman, Eiseman, Formato, Ferrara, Wolf & Carone, LLP

Samuel J. Ferrara is an Executive Partner and Co-Director of the Matrimonial Law department at Abrams, Fensterman, Fensterman, Eisman, Formato, Ferrara, Wolf & Carone, LLP.

Mr. Ferrara represents a variety of clients in a range of matrimonial and family law issues, as well as transactional, corporate and commercial matters. He has particular expertise with contested custody cases, high net worth cases and commercial transactions.

Mr. Ferrara counsels clients throughout all phases of the divorce and separation process, including custody/parental access disputes and support/property distribution issues. He also assists clients in resolving corporate and commercial issues. His experience includes transactional work such as buy/sell agreements for multimillion dollar entities and smaller, individual transactions. These include such issues as employment, shareholder and partnership agreements, licensure issues, and real estate and general business/corporate consultation. Mr. Ferrara is also well-versed in ADR, serving as mediation counsel as well as mediator in multiple disciplines.

A top litigator and negotiator, Mr. Ferrara attained Fellowship in the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, and was named one of the Ten Leaders in Family Law, as well as being designated as a New York Super Lawyer since 2008, a distinction earned by only five percent of the lawyers in the New York metro area. Mr. Ferrara was selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America? in the practice area of family law since 2015.

Mr. Ferrara presents numerous programs and/or teaches at various professional organizations on parent education, custody, parental access, property distribution, trial advocacy, appellate advocacy and ethics. He is also published in professional journals and newsletters. Mr. Ferrara is an adjunct Professor at Hofstra University.

He received his B.A. and M.A. from Boston University and his J.D. from Hofstra University School of Law. Mr. Ferrara was a member of the Labor Law Journal and Moot Court teams. Mr. Ferrara is one of the directors of the Parent Education and Custody Effectiveness program (P.E.A.C.E.), on the Board of Directors of the Nassau County Bar Association, Chair of the Nassau County Bar Association Matrimonial Law and Judiciary committees, a member of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC), the American Bar Association, the New York State Bar Association, and the Suffolk County Bar Association.

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