With more than 35 years of experience as the principal mediator for the NY state unified court system, Michele Kern-Rappy, Esq., is a seasoned veteran whom clients can trust to optimize their settlement success rate. Having developed the court’s unique and award-winning mediation program, she has mediated more than 6,500 commercial and civil disputes as an authority in such areas as premises liability and construction, labor law, personal injury, insurance coverage, malpractice, product liability, commercial litigation, employment law, partnership, and family business.
A highly-skilled and renowned professional in her field, Ms. Kern-Rappy offers private lawyers a robust and purposeful approach to mediation that she has finely honed during her extensive career. Bringing an elevated level of trust, tenacity, and transparency to each case she referees, Ms. Kern-Rappy is well recognized and respected as a proficient and dynamic mediator with an enviable settlement rate.
Tenacity, creativity, and trust are hallmarks of Ms. Kern-Rappy’s approach to mediation
Areas of Expertise
Contract disputes, partnership or corporation disputes, shareholder disputes, class action suits
Personal injuries stemming from all kinds of hazardous conditions on property
Construction accidents, automobile accidents, medical malpractice, traumatic brain injury, complex products liability, legal malpractice
Discrimination, leave, hostile work environment, noncompetes, retaliation, harassment, wage and overtime, whistleblower, wrongful termination
Litigation concerning commercial and residential properties, including cooperatives and condominiums
Provides creative solutions to contract disputes and unfair competition and other torts
Equitable distribution, spousal support, child support, parenting and time sharing.
Trusts and Estates Mediation
Managing complex family issues
Award-Winning Expertise and a Deep Bench of Experience
With more than 35 years’ experience as sole mediator in NY state’s unified court system, Ms. Kern-Rappy has successfully mediated over 6,500 disputes resolving a wide variety of complex litigation. Her persistence, patience, and meticulous attention to detail define how she approaches each case at every stage of conflict resolution. Ms. Kern-Rappy is especially skilled at multi-defendant mediation where her exceptional case research ethic is thoroughly applied to each party.
A visionary leader and role model, Ms. Kern-Rappy established the widely acclaimed mediation non-jury (Med-NJ) program early in her court career, earning her own chambers and developing the rules that provided direction to the initiative. As the only mediator and settlement coordinator in this unique program, Ms. Kern-Rappy served 60 Supreme Court judges in NYC and their staff, providing mediation strategy, counsel, and mentorship.
Ms. Kern-Rappy has co-chaired the NYS Bar Association Advocacy Committee as well as the ADR Section of the NY Women’s Bar Association. During her tenure with the NY Supreme Court, she served on the prestigious Chief Judge’s ADR Task Force, was the Court’s sole mediator with law interns from schools throughout the state and conducted Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)-related training with the Administrative Judge and the Bar.
With a strong interest in mediator work/life balance and mindfulness, Ms. Kern-Rappy created the highly acclaimed courthouse yoga and meditation program for NYS Justices and staff. She continues to train and mentor lawyers, students, and other professionals, and is a popular speaker and author in the mediation arena.
Clients can count on a rigorous and strategic roadmap to mediation that optimizes settlement success
The Standard for Optimal Mediation Results
Successful strategies for interest-based mediation require a clear and systematic process. Ms. Kern-Rappy has developed — and trademarked — such a step-based, transparent and methodological approach entitled R.A.I.S.E.™