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Mediators in the news

..and not for the best reasons.

Mediators are just people too and whilst we all have thick skins and have to allow parties to “offload” onto us rather than each other so that we can get to the heart of the dispute and help them move forward we remain human.

Retired Judge Joseph Farnan Junior who was the mediator assisting Caesars Entertainment and Operating Co negotiate with its creditors felt that comments by the presiding judge on his mediator’s report to the court were so bad as to cause him to remove himself as mediator.

He said “Apparently the Court did not find my progress report helpful because I didn’t breach the confidentiality of the mediation and testify in open court or describe the discussions and proposals exchanged, and detail the status of the differences among the parties.”

It would certainly seem a bit odd if the court was suggesting that any comment by a mediator should breach the rules of confidentiality, although as we saw last week and now below there are times when what happens in mediation does not stay in the mediation rooms.

Over in NY state a Monsey family and divorce mediator, Binyamin Gottlieb, has been arrested trying to leave the country and charged of being involved in a plot to kidnap an Orthodox Jew who refused to give his wife a divorce (“get”).

Co-accused was Rabbi Aharn Goldberg was arrested last week along with another alleged conspirator and charged with “murder for hire”, the two had tried to hire a hit man to force the husband to agree to a “get”. Thankfully the “hit man” recorded the deal and passed the record onto the FBI.

The mediator, presumably a huge fan of Alanis Morrisette’s “Ironic”, acted as the middle man between Rabbi and hit man and delivered the payment..

Northwest Mediation promises to comply with the duty of confidentiality, we destroy any notes after our mediation meetings, and not to kidnap any of the participants.

However if you have an issue you would like to resolve by mediation then please do not hesitate to contact Ed Johnson on 07931318347 or via email at

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