12021 Wilshire Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90025
Alternative Dispute Resolution. Creative, timely, and effective solutions by an experienced and knowledgeable facilitator.
Experience Jeff has extensive, overarching and hands-on experience as a litigator, in house counsel, transactional attorney, outside counsel, and ADR neutral spanning nearly two decades of practice. In his representation of private, public, large, small, profit, and not-for-profit companies, Jeff has established a track record of proven success with both big-picture issues and execution. Leveraging his business experience as an executive decision maker and general manager, he has had to make and manage the decisions that drive successful companies and sometimes lead to conflict. Jeff’s dispute resolution career has covered vast areas of complex business, insurance, financial, commercial, regulatory, technology and conflict issues, including:
· All forms of commercial and business disputes including claims of breach of contract, fraud, violations of business and professions code section 17200, infringement of patents, trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets, and publicity rights, unfair competition, antitrust, business torts, and employment claims.
· All forms of personal injury/wrongful death claims (including SCUBA and waterfront claims), including general negligence, products liability, premises liability, intentional torts, defamation (libel, slander), conversion, misappropriation, emotional distress, statutory torts/quasi-torts, and government torts.
· Substantial experience litigating in state and Federal courts, including jury trials, and in various arbitration, mediation, and administrative forums, including large complex cases, and represented both plaintiffs and defendants in class actions.
· Extensive experience representing insureds and insurers in CGL, general liability, excess, umbrella, errors and omissions, employment practices (EPLI), D&O, marine, and travel accident insurance coverage disputes of all sizes, including in litigation.
· Extensive experience with admiralty/maritime claims and other transportation and common carrier issues, including negotiating/drafting or resolving disputes over logistics, supply chain, bills of lading/purchase orders, cargo, customs clearance, letters of credit, shipping, salvage, general average, and similar matters.
· In house counsel and operations experience at mobile telecommunications technology/telecom and social network startup in the
· Served as contracts counsel at Yahoo! drafting and negotiating Internet advertising, distribution, content, and technology licensing agreements.
· Extensive patent, trademark, copyright, trade secrets, and publicity rights licensing and litigation experience (both plaintiff and defendant).
· Managed rights acquisition and enforcement for large trademark portfolios (over 400 marks) worldwide and directed anti-counterfeiting efforts.
· Regulatory and litigation experience in telecommunications, consumer electronics, medical devices, online privacy, and the Internet.
Finance/Commercial Contracts/Transactions/Real Estate/Banking
· Substantial experience negotiating, structuring, drafting, and enforcing wide variety of complex commercial agreements, as well as NDAs, corporate financing documents, mergers and acquisition (M&A) documents, joint venture agreements, business sale and purchase agreements, finders agreements, licenses, sponsorship agreements, financing documents related to shipping/logistics, letters of credit, factoring receivables, outsourcing, and similar complex contracts.
· Managed public company SEC, FCPA, and regulatory compliance; strong corporate governance experience as corporate secretary and counsel.
· Strong international experience in
· Pitched for, sourced, and documented numerous startup and venture financings.
· Expertise in SEC, FINRA, banking, and public company regulations and disputes.
· Negotiated real estate/facilities and commercial real estate services agreements.
· Nuisance, premises liability, and trespass claims/litigation.
· California Real Estate Broker license pending.
· Currently head of business affairs for television and film production company; extensive experience representing independent producers and talent including in reality and scripted television, co-production arrangements, agency agreements, and financing agreements.
· Extensive experience negotiating sponsorship, brand placement, and licensed merchandise agreements.
· Represented music artists and their managers in recording, publishing, and related agreement negotiations and enforcement/disputes.
· Substantial legal and business affairs experience in content creation/distribution.
· Significant experience in legal and operational issues around live events.
· Negotiated and drafted television sports broadcasting rights fee deals, time buys, revenue share deals, and blended deals in excess of $2.1B.
· Represented athletes and sports governing bodies in wide variety of matters.
· Substantial experience advising/counseling employers of all sizes and employees at all levels on their rights and obligations in the workplace.
· Negotiated executive compensation agreements, including stock option and equity grants, on behalf of employers and executives.
· Extensive experience managing and advising on workplace-related allegations of harassment, discrimination, defamation, employee theft & fraud, EEOC violations, privacy protection, retaliation and wrongful termination, internal investigations, mass employee layoffs or reductions in force, and union issues.
Alternative Dispute Resolution Experience Member, AAA Commercial, Expedited, and Large Complex Case, Technology, Sports, and Entertainment Panels. Broad-based experience representing parties, and, since 2001, serving as arbitrator, sole arbitrator, Panel Chair, or mediator in patent, trademark, copyright, trade secrets, insurance defense, wrongful death/personal injury, products liability, sports, breach of contract, antitrust, unfair competition, international, doping, athlete eligibility, and commercial cases in arbitration, mediation, and other forms of contested dispute resolution in nearly 100 cases spanning hundreds of millions of dollars in dispute; drafted and implemented arbitration procedural rules governing certain arbitration disputes. Also, member, LA County Superior Court Civil Arbitration, Settlement Officer, and Neutral Evaluator Panels, and member of Panel of Arbitrators for the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre (HKIAC), Republic of China Arbitration Association (Taipei), International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA), Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), Cal. Lawyers for the Arts Arbitration and Mediation Services, and LPGA.
Alternative Dispute Resolution Training AAA Fundamentals of Effective Mediation Advocacy, 2011; AAA Arbitrator Ethics & Disclosure, 2011; AAA Arb. Fundamentals & Best Practices for New Arbitrators, 2010; AAA Arb. Awards: Safeguarding, Deciding & Writing Awards, 2008; AAA Chairing an Arb. Panel: Managing Procedures, Process, & Dynamics, 2008; Court of Arbitration for Sport Training, 2005, 2001.
Professional Licenses Admitted in: California; Colorado; Hawaii; admitted before numerous U.S. District Courts and the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Ninth, Tenth, and Federal Circuits.
Professional Associations American Bar Association (Forum on Entertainment & Sports Law; Litigation, Business Law, and Dispute Resolution Sections); State Bar of California (Business Law and Litigation Sections); Hawaii State Bar Association; Association of Corporate Counsel; International Bar Association (Dispute Resolution Section); LA County Bar Association.
Work History Benz Law Group – Attorney, Arbitrator, Mediator 2008-Present; Hidden Empire Film Group, LLC and Ether Sports Marketing, LLC, EVP Business and Legal Affairs, Los Angeles 2011-Present; COO, The Jungle U, LLC, dba Golden Spear, San Francisco, Hong Kong & Shanghai, China 2009-10; Chief Administrative Officer, Secretary and General Counsel, AVP, Inc., Los Angeles, 2008-09; Vice President of Business & Legal Affairs, A2 Holdings, LLC, Los Angeles, 2006-07; General Counsel/Managing Director of Legal and Government Affairs, Secretary and Ethics Officer, United States Olympic Committee, Colorado Springs, 2001-06; Attorney, Coudert Brothers, San Francisco, 1996-01; Attorney, Boughey, Garvie & Bushner, San Francisco and Honolulu, 1993-96; Legal Intern, Lloyd’s of London 1992.
Education University of Michigan Ross School of Business (MBA-2006); University of Texas School of Law (JD-1993, Editorial Board & Technical Editor, The Review of Litigation; Director, Board of Advocates); University of Michigan (BA, Political Science-1990).
Publications and Speaking Engagements Authored articles on sports law, license agreements, copyright licensing, legal aspects of advertising on the Internet, and international arbitration; testified before US Senate on legal issues; regular speaker at Sports Lawyers Association Annual Meeting, and at bar association meetings; regular guest lecturer at classes and symposia on ADR and other topics at major law schools.