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I was not happy with my decision because he lacked professionalism in many areas
When you own a small family-owned business and have millions of dollars tied up in litigation, you want the matter resolved promptly. For a big corporation, millions of dollars are nothing, but for a small family-owned business, it takes a hit. We were hoping that would be the results with ADR Services, quick and efficient. Unfortunately, that was far from the case. The Judge that we selected from ADR's list was Judge Williams. I was not happy with my decision because he lacked professionalism in many areas. To start with, he encountered what he called a personal matter at the time our case appointed to him. Only he had an idea of how this would affect him being able to work on our case. We only found out much later that he used this excuse to constantly give us delay after delay, all the while we were losing money as our properties were tied up with no cash flow coming in. Right then, he should have requested a recusal from the case, and it had it assigned another judge. As a professional, he should have known that he was not in the right state of mind to handle not only our case but any case appointed to him at this time. Instead, he decided to take on the case, but made his issue a priority and put us, the clients on the back burner every step of the way. I guess at ADR the customer comes last, even after there several personal vacations. The Judge was always leaving the country due to his matter, so this delayed our Arbitration. When we finally went in to have our case heard in front of Judge Williams, it was a complete circus. Aside from the constant cookie breaks, he was easily distracted, did not seem to understand, nor really care about the essence of the case, never took notes, and on several occasions, I would catch him taking naps. After a week of Arbitration, no decision made. We had to reschedule, and of course, scheduling had to be arranged according to his availability. Since he was always out of the country, for personal matters; to schedule became a massive factor in delaying the case. Due to the constant delays of trying to schedule a suitable date for the Judge, both parties agreed to finish the Arbitration through briefings. That was another nightmare; both parties would submit their briefs, then he would give each party the opportunity to rebuttal the claims made on the submissions, this went on for years going back and forth until finally, both parties put an end to the never-ending rounds of briefs and rebuttals. When the final award was granted, Judge Williams not only contradicted himself but gave us an ambiguous ruling that left both parties with more questions than answers. When we asked for clarification, we were sanctioned. After spending years and thousands of dollars waiting for the Judge to come up with an incompetent ruling that left both sides scratching their heads in utter disbelief of the incoherency, the least we could receive is clarity from the Judge. Instead, we had to spend thousands more and have an outside court referee not affiliated with ADR Services clarify the order for us. The referee even said that the Judge made a poor decision, and he did not understand how he came up with such an incompetent ruling. This experience has left me with such a bad taste in my mouth, and I would not want anyone else to have the same experience I did, wait for years and get milked for money, then to have to go and spend additional money. I would not trust Judge Williams to handle any arbitration, mediation, or any legal matter. I honestly believe he is going senile. He is too old and way out of his element as an arbitrator or mediator.
Los Angeles, California
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