The Pilgrim Mediation Group is a boutique firm dedicated to resolving only the most challenging, difficult and complex disputes. We bring our combined 80 years of real world experience in mediating, trying, negotiating and settling “bet your company” cases as lawyers and businessmen to help parties get to “yes”.
Federal and state judges, as well as parties, have appointed Pilgrim to mediate a wide variety of complex disputes, including securities class actions, patent litigation, products liability, commercial cases and law firm disputes. (Link to judicial mediation appointments) We have successfully mediated difficult, complex and significant disputes both before and after litigation has been commenced. Pilgrim is pleased to be recognized in USA Chambers Guide for Nationwide Mediators. (Link to Chambers.) During 2019, Pilgrim Mediation Group was honored for its achievements as the recipient of the New York Award as the best in mediation category (link to press release).
Pilgrim has assisted numerous major law firms and their clients attempting to resolve disputes, including Bernstein Litowitz Berger & Grossmann LLP, Carella, Byrne, Cecchi, Olstein, Brody & Agnello, P.C., Gibson Dunn, Grant & Eisenhofer P.A., Hunton & Williams LLP, Kirkland & Ellis, Labaton Sucharow LLP, Latham & Watkins LLP, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, LLP, Tompkins, McGuire, Wachenfeld & Barry LLP, Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP, Seeger Weiss LLP and Williams & Connolly LLP. Although many of the mediations in which Pilgrim has been involved remain confidential, there are mediations where Pilgrim has been publicly credited for its assistance.
In 2016, Pilgrim assisted in a mediation among Ageas and certain claimant groups to reach a settlement of lengthy and complex civil litigations in Belgium and the Netherlands related to the former Fortis group for events in 2007 and 2008, which will be submitted to the Amsterdam Court of Appeals. The total settlement amount was €1.2 billion which one participant publicly described as “[o]ne of the largest settlements in the history of Europe” and was reached after “intensive and constructive negotiations.” (Link to Ageas Press Release.)
In 2014, Pilgrim assisted Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory and the law firm of Ropes & Gray to resolve a long-running malpractice action against the law firm arising out of the prosecution of a patent application. (Link to New York Law Journal article.)
In 2012, Pilgrim was appointed by the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey to mediate both in the Schering-Plough Securities Litigation and Merck Securities Litigation. Although previous mediation attempts had failed, we were able to assist the parties to resolve both cases. As one of the lead lawyers stated at the settlement hearing:
Ultimately, Your Honor, I must note that a settlement here was the result of the attention, dedication and sophistication of the Pilgrim Mediation Group, the group you appointed, Your Honor.
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The ability and experience on their part to dig into the facts really made the settlement happen. If not for their perseverance, I don’t know if we’d be here today presenting. (Link to transcript)
Federal Judge Dennis M. Cavanaugh made the following comments about the performance of Pilgrim’s managing members:
I’ve just got to state for the record that I thought that as mediators and special masters they did an extraordinary job, one of the most professional and thorough that I’ve ever encountered, and the Court is very grateful for the amount of time that it saved on the judicial side . . . and I just want it clear as to the fact that I thought they did just an excellent job in this case. (Link to)
The members of Pilgrim Mediation Group also have been appointed to serve as Special Masters in federal securities class actions. (Link to Orders) Our Report and Recommendations (Link to Report and Recommendations) were adopted in their entirety by the Court. (Link to Opinion and Order)
Pilgrim’s mediation successes are not accidental. As lawyers, our Managing Members successfully have negotiated resolution of some of the largest and most complex cases in history, including Cendant Securities Litigation, McKesson Securities Litigation, DaimlerChrysler Securities Litigation and Collins & Aikman Securities Litigation.
We have been lead trial counsel in jury trials, bench trials and arbitrations to both plaintiffs and defendants, and have settled large and complex cases for both. Our managing members have been in corporate boardrooms and at the plaintiff’s counsel table where decisions to settle cases have been made, and have made the recommendations from both vantage points that have led to the resolution of “bet your company” cases. We understand the practical considerations as well as the legal considerations that lead both sides to “hold them or fold them”.
We provide a unique, phased team approach that enables us to collaborate extensively during the Pre-Mediation Session Phase – before the Mediation Session begins– to gain an in-depth understanding of the substantive issues involved, the posture of the case and the risks and rewards affecting both sides.
(See Our Services.)