The Arbitration Saga Continues for Willkie Partner

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Willkie Partner Arbitration

In an ongoing legal battle, a former landlord has urged a Connecticut state judge to mandate a return to arbitration for a Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP partner and his spouse amid a lease dispute. This request pivots on the assertion that the couple cannot circumvent their binding arbitration agreement just because their preferred mediator withdrew from the process.

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Willkie Partner Arbitration : Renewed Calls for Arbitration

L&S Investments LLC and Lawrence Rutkowski, a member of the company, have approached the Superior Court of Connecticut with a specific request. They want the court to reopen a consolidated set of lawsuits filed against them by Willkie partner Mark Getachew and his wife, DeNora M. Getachew. The purpose? To compel the Getachews to resume arbitration and to cover the legal fees incurred from this latest legal motion filed last Thursday.

According to the legal motion from L&S and Rutkowski, the Getachews are allegedly disregarding the original mediation-arbitration agreement they signed, which both parties intended to be binding and conclusive. The disputes in question involve allegations of a lease agreement breach during the COVID-19 pandemic and a separate action regarding the recovery of a security deposit.

Willkie Partner Arbitration : A Mediation Breakdown

The motion elaborates that in October, all parties agreed to seek alternative dispute resolution for the couple’s two consolidated cases. However, following an initial day of mediation in February, led by retired Connecticut Superior Court Judge Douglas Mintz, a breakdown occurred. Judge Mintz expressed his inability to continue serving as the mediator required to issue a final arbitration award, leading to the Getachews’ decision to potentially resume court proceedings.