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Sandy Upchurch

Sandy Says: Just Show Up, Good Faith Not Required

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As a member of The Florida Bar since 1994, Sandy Upchurch has a broad base of litigation experience that allows her to effectively mediate a wide range of disputes. To schedule a mediation with Sandy, please visit our online scheduling page or call her case manager, Mary Lou Struble, at 800-264-2622. Question: What is the best way to handle a situation where it appears the opposing party is not mediating in good faith? Sandy Says: Mediating “in good faith” is a myth in state court cases in Florida and a concept that really does not exist, believe it or not. If you research the Mediators Ethics Advisory Committee opinions at the Florida State Courts…

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Florida Mediator Kimberly Sands

After Ray Rice incident, do we know where NFL, ESPN stand on domestic violence?

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In Florida, all certified mediators must take a course in domestic violence every two years to satisfy our continuing education requirements. I have to say it irritates me to no end. Every two years? Can’t I take a test and opt out of it? Really, I get it! Unfortunately, no matter how burdensome the experience, the topic is obviously of sufficient importance that mediators and many other licensed professionals must also satisfy these requirements. Is it really so misunderstood or is this one way to acknowledge the importance of the topic?

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Florida Mediator Kimberly Sands

What Is Lean In?

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Lean In is the brain child of Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg. Anyone who has not seen her TED Talk on YouTube should do so as it succinctly states the mission of the book and the groups that have developed in response to the book. There are other effective women lawyers’ associations that have emerged over the past 25 years as women have become more prevalent in the profession. These groups are really no different from the various committees that evolve from professional associations to address issues of common interest. Lean In addresses the challenges working women experience and offers positive solutions for complex problems, in particular through the power of negotiation. It is therefore a natural area of interest for a firm devoted to mediation and other forms of dispute resolution.

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Florida Mediator John Upchurch

Work Hard, Play Hard

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Few will disagree that the practice of law is a stressful profession with myriad challenges, ranging from attracting enough business and overseeing operations to dealing with clients, opposing counsel and judges who can drive one to the edge of despair. Finding a countervailing balance in life also is a challenge. I thoroughly enjoy my practice and cannot imagine doing anything else. Nevertheless, to retain one’s sanity, there has to be a release. Mine is international travel.

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Florida Mediator Kimberly Sands

Embracing Connectivity: The Florida Bar’s 2014 Annual Convention

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Among the usual substantive committee meetings and topics were programs on how older attorneys can downsize their practices, advice for young attorneys establishing their practices, and programs on diversity, including race and gender. I was lucky enough to be included on a panel addressing the latter, utilizing a format derived from the Sheryl Sandberg-inspired “Lean In” movement. For those who wish to continue the conversation, UWWM sponsors its own “Lean In” group for litigators in proximity to our Maitland office. For more information, please comment or send us your contact information.

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Getting Ready to Mediate: A Blueprint for Success

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Let UWWM founding partner John Upchurch help you connect the dots for an efficient and productive mediation. It may involve building a better foundation, tearing down some walls and an overall vision for the end game. Whatever your concern, John will guide you through his recommended blueprint for success in a complimentary Webinar beginning at noon Monday, June 23.

Space is limited. Reserve your Webinar seat now at: www2.gotomeeting.com/register/640197554.

Attendees will learn about overcoming negotation setbacks, avoiding impasse, facilitating that necessary flow of information and more they need to know. An added bonus: CLE credit through the Florida Bar will be available. Don’t miss this master class!

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