Mediation Experience

Over the past twenty years, Denise has mediated cases in the following subject areas.  While clearly developing subject expertise in certain areas, she also has demonstrated the ability to master new and complex subjects quickly.  For more details on a sample of her cases please click on the various links below:

Intellectual Property & Entertainment
Science & Technology
Insurance Coverage & Bad Faith
Multi-Party, Public Entity & Public Policy
Wrongful Death, Severe Injury & Mass Accident
Privacy & Personal Tort
Other Commercial Disputes
Employment (union and non-union)

Intellectual Property & Entertainment

  • “Hollywood accounting” dispute surrounding cross-licensing, royalties and participation agreements, involving tens of millions of dollars.
  • Copyright, trademark and trade secret disputes involving radio, television, advertising, science and technology, Internet media, financial, real estate, food and household goods, fashion (clothing, jewelry, hair care), professional sports, and actors/actresses (and rights of publicity).
  • Copyright and breach of partnership dispute involving the dissolution of a high-profile recording group.  Litigation not only settled, but the group members eventually reconciled and started recording again only a few years later.
  • Contract dispute regarding reality TV show and high profile recording artist.
  • Back due royalty dispute involving recording studio and former business manager of recording star.
  • Merchandise licensing dispute involving a popular doll.
  • Copyright dispute over recordings of radio programs and lectures by national religious figure.

Computers, Science & Technology

  • Warranty and contract disputes re: alleged defects in customized hardware and software for commercial and public sector clients.
  • Licensing disputes involving use outside the scope of a license.
  • Scientific debates re: identifying and measuring economic, environmental, health and safety risks as part of national environmental and consumer protection regulations.
  • Shareholder/directors’ suit involving medical technology that was among the most sophisticated in its market at the time.
  • Public utility dispute over business customer charges and appropriate models of gasoline transport through pipelines.
  • Contract dispute between large utility and provider of critical and sophisticated hardware and software.
  • Patent infringement dispute involving technology employed in both aeronautics and amusement park rides.

Insurance Coverage & Bad Faith

  • Class action against major health insurer involving treatment of deductibles for certain class of patients.
  • Disability coverage and bad faith claims including both ERISA and non-ERISA policies.
  • Coverage disputes involving general/commercial coverage, advertising injury, and healthcare reimbursement policies.

Multi-Party, Public Entity & Public Policy Disputes

  • See train accident cases below, involving major metropolitan transit authority, contractors, and various insurers.
  • Health and safety compliance dispute between municipality, court-appointed receiver and property owner
  • Restructuring the contractual and operating relationships among over 30 rural electric cooperatives with over $1 billion in assets, resulting in a fundamental change in the way energy was distributed in that part of the United States.
  • Superfund (CERCLA) allocation dispute involving over thirty municipal and industry PRPs.
  • U.S. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and the U.S. Resolution Trust Corporation (RTC) suits against Boards of Directors related to failed savings and loan entities.
  • Computer contract/software dispute between one of the largest public school districts in the U.S. and its computer services provider.
  • Regulatory negotiations and public dialogues for the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) involving business, consumer and environmental groups over energy-efficiency and environmental claims on consumer product labeling.
  • Renegotiation of U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) formula for funding certain assistance programs, involving representatives from each of the 50 states and the U.S. territories.
  • Negotiated rulemaking involving the modification of hazardous waste rules for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
  • Facilitated dialogue among leaders of nationally-prominent museums re: development of ethical guidelines for retaining and selling art and artifacts donated to museums.
  • Negotiations over public-private partnerships in the delivery of state funding for social services.
  • Negotiations with local government, business and citizen groups over municipal budget priorities in the wake of newly restricted property tax increases.

Wrongful Death/Severe Personal Injury and Mass Accidents

  • Creation of $200 million interpleader fund, the maximum allowed under federal law, to resolve injury and wrongful death claims arising out of one of the largest train accidents in California history.
  • Settlement of separate personal injury and wrongful death claims in another major rail accident totaling over $25 million.
  • Individual railroad employee injury and death claims against railroads under the Federal Employers’ Labor Act (FELA).
  • Individual personal injury claims by third parties against railroads and their agents.

Privacy & Personal Torts

  • Unauthorized use of hundreds of individuals’ photographs as thumbnails on alleged pornography website.
  • Unauthorized use of models’ photos in advertisements and product packaging.
  • Alleged sexual tort by professional sports figure.
  • Allegations of negligence against a website where users became targets of violence.
  • Right of publicity actions involving models, actors and actresses.

Other Commercial Disputes

  • Member of select national panels for franchisor-franchisee disputes and automobile manufacturer-dealer disputes.
  • Significant civil fraud claims by large parent company against a subsidiary, involving tens of thousands of alleged incidents, with a subsequent separate action filed by the U.S. Department of Justice.
  • Contractual and equitable indemnity claims among co-defendants.

Employment (union and non-union)

  • Wrongful termination, race, gender and disability claims against private entities under both state and federal law.