In 2008, after having litigated a variety of real estate disputes for nearly 40 years, Mr. Gruber turned the bulk of his professional attention to helping parties resolve their disputes by way of arbitration and mediation so as to avoid litigating their matters in the Superior or Federal courts.
AV Preeminent Rated by Martindale Hubbell, the highest Professional and Ethical Rating, Mr. Gruber has been a licensed California Attorney since January 1970, and received the bulk of his mediation training from, among others, the highly respected mediator and educator, Peter Robinson of the Strauss Institute INS LINK at Pepperdine School of Law, and the vast bulk of his arbitrator training over a 30+ year period of time from the American Arbitration Association. Mr. Gruber has been a licensed California real estate broker since May 2008, and has arbitrated and mediated well over 200 cases involving a variety of real estate disputes between real estate brokers, brokerages, title, escrow, and insurance companies, banks, hard money lenders, and flippers, along with attorney-client fee disputes.
Mr. Gruber received his Bachelor’s degree in 1966 with honors from UCLA’s School of Business Administration, now the Anderson School of Management, and his Juris Doctor from the UCLA School of Law in 1969, having passed the July 1969 Bar Exam and being sworn in as a California attorney in January 1970.. Mr. Gruber was admitted to the Bar of the United States Supreme Court in 1985, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in 1976, and the Central, Southern, and Northern Districts of California in 1970, 1972, and 2002, respectively.
For nearly 40 years, Mr. Gruber was a civil litigator in real estate, business and commercial matters before turning his attention in 2008 almost exclusively to alternative dispute resolution. For more than 30 years, Mr. Gruber has been an active member of the American Arbitration Association’s National Panel of Commercial Arbitrators, and for the past several years has been a member of the American Arbitration Association’s Complex Litigation Panel. Mr. Gruber has been a judge pro tem for the San Diego Superior Court, handling approximately a dozen matters as a settlement conference judge.
As a major part of Mr. Gruber’s professional career, he has been, and continues to be, an adjunct professor at USD’s School of Law, teaching the live client Civil Clinic continuously since 1990 and the live client Landlord-Tenant Clinic from 2008 to 2013. These are mentoring programs for law students who are allowed by the California State Supreme Court and the California Bar to practice law in the civil arena for clients otherwise unable to afford attorneys. From 2012 to 2018, Mr. Gruber also served as in house counsel for Keller Williams San Diego Central Coastal.
In addition to conducting private mediations, Mr. Gruber serves on several mediation panels, including that of the American Arbitration Association, the San Diego Superior Court, the California Association of Realtors, and the Greater San Diego Association of Realtors Real Estate Mediation Center (REMC). In 2012, Mr. Gruber served as vice-chair, and in 2013 and 2014 as chair, of REMC’s Executive Committee.
Though Mr. Gruber’s mediation protocol is primarily evaluative. Mr. Gruber wants the parties to know it is their dispute and their mediation and that he is there to aid the parties in reaching a resolution. It is imperative to Mr. Gruber not only that he remains impartial, but that all of the parties have an accurate perception of his neutrality. Notwithstanding, Mr. Gruber’s role is to assist the parties in understanding the nuances of the litigation in which they are or about to be engaged, along with the risks and costs of moving forward into trial.
There is no set format for all mediations. If a joint session is warranted, one will be recommended. If the parties are uncomfortable meeting in joint session, none will be likely to be held. If speaking separately to one or more of the attorneys will move the matter forward, that’s what will occur. Confidentiality and confidence in the mediator, along with the mediator’s knowledge, patience, and perseverance, are the keys to a successful mediation, and those factors are what make Mr. Gruber enormously successful at what he does.
Mr. Gruber arbitrates only those cases that mirror those in which he engaged for nearly forty (40) years as a practicing attorney, giving him an expertise that, together with his well-earned reputation for fairness, neutrality, and impartiality, allows his arbitral decisions thus far to have remained unchallenged. Mr. Gruber prides himself on treating all participants equally and with the utmost respect
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