Retired New Jersey Superior Court Judge Walter Skrod joined DeCotiis, Fitzpatrick, Cole & Giblin LLP as of counsel to the firm on Jan. 31 after nearly seven years on the bench.
He brings with him expertise in alternative dispute resolution, mediation and arbitration, as well as consultation with public and private sector clients, according to a Feb. 4 announcement.
Skrod also consults on trial presentations, and is available to manage litigation as a special master and offer guidance to the firm regarding complex matters.
“Having served in various roles in my legal career, I am looking forward to the unique opportunity I will have to provide counsel to clients here at DeCotiis,” Skrod said in a prepared statement. “My wealth of experience settling cases as a judge and knowledge of Alternative Dispute Resolution will assist in setting the firm apart.”
Skrod’s addition to the firm will extend DeCotiis’ purview to a new practice area: alternative dispute resolution. Litigation is expensive and burdens the court systems, and the ADR Practice Group will allow parties to work toward a voluntary and consensual agreement.
ADR aims to avoid a trial and also allows for a forum for creative solutions that best fit the needs of both parties.
DeCotiis Co-Managing Partners Joseph DeCotiis and Michael DeCotiis welcomed Skrod in a prepared statement.
“With over 45 years of practicing law, we are very pleased to have Judge Skrod become part of the DeCotiis firm. Not only is he the first former judge to join our ranks, but he will provide invaluable expertise in the area of Alternative Dispute Resolution for our clients,” the said.
The firm’s new ADR Practice Group is comprised of a diverse group of attorneys who focus their practices in various areas of litigation, as well as corporate, labor and employment, real estate, construction, environmental and healthcare law. They include trial and transactional lawyers, a former judge, court-appointed mediator and arbitrator.