22 May 2018

The Psychology of Mediation

Paul Havel, Partner at Miller Nash Graham & Dunn LLP (USA), and Joel VandenBrink, Founder at Two Beers Brewing and Seattle Cider Company (USA), represented the interests of Viva Brewing Company.

Sarah Anne Keefe, a Partner at Womble Bond Dickinson (USA), and Nathalia Mazzonetto, a Lawyer at Müller, Mazzonetto (Brazil), appeared on behalf of La Fiesta, the Mexican tequila company whose application to register its VIVA LA FIESTA mark for tequila was rejected in view of Viva Brewing’s trademark VIVA for beer.

David Friedland, a Partner at Friedland Vining, P.A. (USA) and a member of the INTA Panel of Trademark Mediators, served as the mediator for the parties.

In preparing for the session, the participants tried to treat the experience as they would a real mediation. Only the mediator saw each side’s confidential mediation statements and knew the parties’ settlement positions at the outset.

As the mediation progressed from the mediator’s introduction through a successful resolution of the dispute, Ruth Corbin, Chair of CorbinPartners Inc., Adjunct Professor at Osgoode Hall Law School, York University (Canada), and a psychologist well-versed in mediation, analyzed the choices being made by each party, including the mediator.

True to an actual mediation, the party caucuses remained confidential, with the other side stepping out of the room at various times. While the audience could witness the exchanges, the unscripted private caucuses produced some unexpected results for not only the audience but the panel members themselves.

Dr. Corbin’s insights added a worthwhile twist to this entertaining presentation, which highlighted the value of mediation, particularly through INTA’s Panel of Trademark Mediators, to INTA brand owners.

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