Following a career as a trial attorney and jurist, Ron Spears began accepting civil matters as a mediator or arbitrator in 2016. He has been involved in a broad variety of civil cases with multiple parties including personal injury, wrongful death, medical negligence, nursing home injury, labor disputes, probate and will contests, contract and other business disputes, and property damage and construction cases. He limits involvement in marital cases to property issues.
The geographic area served is typically within 100 miles of Taylorville, Illinois, although travel to more distant locations can be scheduled. Millions of dollars in disputed matters and other types of disputes have been successfully resolved out of court while Ron served as mediator or arbitrator. Ron has also been retained by attorneys to perform a mock bench trial or mock arbitration to assist in early case evaluations.
On initial contact there is a screening of the participating attorneys and parties to ensure there are no conflicts or necessary disclosures. A mutually agreeable date, place, and time for the mediation or arbitration is set. The attorneys can select an acceptable location. If requested by the attorneys a suitable neutral location for the mediation or arbitration can be obtained by Spears Dispute Resolution LLC, but an additional charge may be incurred.
A mediation or arbitration agreement will set forth the terms and conditions of the engagement. The mediator/arbitrator will not give legal advice. Parties will consult with their attorneys concerning any legal issues and decisions concerning agreement. The attorneys will prepare a stipulation sheet of any mediation agreements.
Submissions are requested at least a week prior to any mediation or arbitration. The mediator will work toward insuring all parties understand the position of all other parties and will explore strengths and weaknesses of all sides. In arbitration an award will be promptly rendered based upon the terms of the arbitration agreement.
It is critical that all parties are open and honest during the sessions and have confidence in the impartiality of the mediator/arbitrator and the confidentiality of the process.
The current hourly rate for services is $350 per hour for all time spent on preparation and actual mediation and arbitration. There is no charge for travel time within one hour of Taylorville. The fees and costs will be divided in equal shares among the parties absent other agreement.
A graduate of the University of Illinois (B.A., 1994) and SIU Law (J.D. 1977) with high honors, Ron clerked for the United States District Court before serving as a member of a Taylorville law firm. His practice emphasis was litigation in state and federal courts. He served as a Circuit Court Judge from 1993-2015. In 2016, Spears began his mediation and arbitration practice and has helped resolve millions of dollars in disputes and other types of claims. A brief CV is available for download on the "About Judge Spears" page.