In her work as an ADR Services Inc. neutral, retired family law judge Susan Lopez-Giss often makes use of that other famous line from the film "Jerry Maguire."
"Help me help you," she said with a chuckle. "Most of the attorneys who appear in front of me genuinely want to help their clients resolve their issues. ... And the more information they give me with respect to issues, the more information they give me with respect to finances, the more information they give me with respect to the problems they've had, the more effective I can be. And in the end, that helps them be a hero to their client."
Examination of the Elimination of Bias in the Practice of Law Elimination of bias begins first with the acknowledgement that we each have biases – it is unavoidable. The term bias refers to the tendency of a person to favor one thing, idea, or person over another. In the law, some biases are useful, for example of the voir dire of a jury. Others, however, conflict with protected classes and become unlawful. For Judges, the standard is even higher, as they strive to review each matter through a completely unbiased lens. In this program, the speakers will discuss the distinctions between lawful and unlawful biases, discuss how these biases come into play in the practice of law, and most importantly - how to minimize and eliminate their effect.
Robert Coviello, Esq.
Hon. Susan Lopez-Giss (Ret.)
A sitting judge, an attorney and a retired judge define, discuss and dissect the issues that make these cases problematic, and offer suggestions for improving the chances for effective representation and resolution.
Hon. Susan Lopez-Giss (Ret.) - ADR Services, Inc.
Hon. Lawrence Riff - Los Angeles Superior Court
Alexandra Leichter, Esq. - LLM Family Law
Beverly Hills Bar Association
Meet Hon. Susan Lopez-Giss (Ret.)
Hon. Susan Lopez-Giss (Ret.) served 15 years as a Judge for the Los Angeles Superior Court, with the entirety of her time on the bench devoted to Family Law. Judge Lopez-Giss presided over thousands of cases involving all types of contested and complex Family Law matters, including parentage cases, custody and visitation issues, child and spousal support, business valuation, and property division. In addition to issuing thousands of rulings, Judge Lopez-Giss became known for actively and successfully settling her cases. Her strong legal mind, coupled with an emphasis on collaboration to resolve family disputes, has resulted in her reputation as an effective problem solver and adjudicator.