This firm works entirely in the area of civil litigation, both for defendants and plaintiffs. My own practice is focused primarily on personal injury defense, including medical negligence cases and products liability matters. Many of these cases involve claims of nursing home negligence. I have been involved in several private mediations, all in nursing home negligence cases, in which Richard M. Strauss, Esquire, has acted as the mediator. In all but one of those mediations, Mr. Strauss was able to assist the parties in settling the case, often under difficult circumstances. In that regard, Mr. Strauss' practice of not having counsel or the parties make "opening statements" about their respective positions helps reduce the emotion and grandstanding that often make settlement more difficult, particularly in cases involving a family member of the nursing home/assisted living resident. Instead, Mr. Strauss, himself, gives an opening presentation in which he explains the process and helps to create the appropriate non-confrontational atmosphere for a private mediation. This is particularly effective with family members who have not been involved previously in litigation and are apprehensive about the mediation process.
Mr. Strauss' background, both as a lawyer and in the administration of claims involving nursing homes and assisted living facilities, was invaluable in the mediations I have had with him, both because it allowed him to properly evaluate the submissions of the parties factually and legally, including standard of care issues, and because it gives him a high level of credibility with the participants. In every instance, he was well-prepared and had clearly spent a great deal of time making himself familiar with the facts and applicable law. He also has been straightforward with me and my clients about the strengths and weaknesses he sees with my client's position in a particular case. In short, I would recommend Richard Strauss as a mediator, without reservation, and I would be happy to discuss this with anyone contemplating using his services.
Kathleen M. McDonald