James M. Paulson - Arbitrator / Mediator
understanding the parties needs and expectations

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Labor Arbitration and Collective Bargaining
Employment Law


Labor Arbitration and Collective Bargaining


Address:  5653 Useless Bay Avenue, Unit 603, Langley, WA 98260
Phone:  (360) 588-8031
email James Paulson


            B.A., George Washington University, 1966      
            J.D., Boston University School of Law, 1969
                        • Courses in Labor Law and Labor Arbitration


            Massachusetts, 1969 – Washington, 2005; U.S. District Court - Massachusetts, 1970 – Connecticut, 1985 – Western District of Washington, 2006; United States Court of Appeals – First Circuit, 1970 – Second Circuit 2004 - Third Circuit, 1985 – Sixth Circuit, 1982 – Ninth Circuit, 1995; United States Supreme Court, 1975; pro hac vice admissions in over 25 federal and state courts.


            2005 - American Arbitration Association – Labor Panel

            2005 - Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service – Labor Panel

            2005 – Washington Public Employee Relations Commission – Dispute Resolution Panel


            1969-1973 - Associate, Angoff, Goldman, Manning & Pyle1, Boston, Massachusetts
                        Union and Individual Employee Advocate

            1973-1976 – Associate, Morgan, Brown, Kearns & Joy, Boston, Massachusetts
                        Employer/Management Advocate

            1976-2004 – Partner, Morgan, Brown & Joy, LLP2, Boston, Massachusetts
                        Employer/Management Advocate


            Boston Bar Association – Labor and Employment Law Section – 1969-2004

            King County Bar Association – Labor and Employment Law Section – 2005 to present; Trustee, Labor and Employment Law Section - 2009-2011

            Massachusetts Bar Association – Labor Law Committee – 1975-1977; Labor and Employment Law Section – 1978 - 2004 (Chairman 1978-1980)

            Washington State Bar Association – Labor and Employment Law Section – 2005 to 2011

            American Bar Association – Labor and Employment Law Section – 1969 to present; ADR in Employment and Labor Law Committee (formerly the Labor Arbitration and Collective Bargaining Agreement Committee) – 1975 to present – ADR Section - 2005 to present

            Labor and Employment Relations Association - 2009 to present


            Organizational Affiliation:

                        Labor Law Faculty Member, Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, Inc.3 – 1980-1990

                        Labor Relations Advisor, Associated Industries of Massachusetts4 1987-2004

            Selected Program Participation and Courses Taught:

                        1975, 1978 -  Boston Bar Association, Workshop for Labor Relations Specialists on the Massachusetts Public Employee Collective Bargaining Law (Presenter)

                        1978, 1982, 1983 – MCLE , Labor Law and Employment Discrimination (Presenter)

                        1980, 1981, 1982, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1993, 2000, 2001 – Associated Industries of Massachusetts, Effective Dealing with Unions: Theory and Tactics in Contract Negotiation, Grievance Processing and Arbitration (Taught full day program)

                        1981 - MCLE, Labor Law – Selected Issues for the General Practitioner (Presenter)
                        1982 – Fitchburg State College, Seminar, Working with Unions (Presenter)

                        1984 - Associated Industries of Massachusetts, Labor Relations and Employment Discrimination Law (Taught two day program)

                        1985, 1986, 1988, 1989, 1990 – MCLE, New England Employee Relations Conference (Chairman and Presenter full day conferences)

                        1987 – National Business Institute, Inc., Massachusetts Employment and Labor Law Update (Presenter)

                        1987, 1988, 1989 – Massachusetts Bar Association, Annual Meeting, Recent Developments in Federal and Massachusetts Law – Labor Law (Presenter)

                        1998 – National Labor Relations Board, U.S. Department of Labor, Boston-Massachusetts-Federal Bar Associations, 27th Annual Joint Labor Law Conference (Panelist)

                        2001-2003 – Associated Industries of Massachusetts, Labor Relations Forums –Four Meetings Per Year (Moderator and Presenter at one-half day programs)

2003 - Massachusetts Bar Association, Labor Law Strategies and Legal Issues Regarding Corporate Restructuring – Mergers, Acquisitions, Successorships & Assigns

                        2006 – American Arbitration Association, Labor Arbitration Advocacy III


            I negotiated, as principal spokesperson, over one hundred collective bargaining agreements as well as arbitrated (as an advocate) over two hundred arbitration cases involving both the public and private sector. I have worked with state mediators as well as mediators from the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service.  Additionally, I have advised unions and employers on practical and legal issues (including the drafting of contract language) in dozens of situations where I was not present at the negotiating table or in administering a collective bargaining agreement involving the interpretation and application of contract language or discipline of employees.  I have litigated many cases (both representation questions and unfair labor practice charges) before the Massachusetts Labor Relations Commission and the National Labor Relations Board.

            In the public sector, have negotiated contracts and had arbitration cases with the following types of bargaining units:

                        • School Teachers
                        • School Department Heads and Principals
                        • School Custodians
                        • School Cafeteria Workers
                        • Police Officers
                        • Police Sergeants, Lieutenants and Captains
                        • Firefighters
                        • Fire Lieutenants and Captains
                        • Production and Maintenance Workers – Department of Public Works

            In the public sector, I have dealt with various cities and towns and, inter alia, locals of the following unions:

                        • Massachusetts Teachers Association (affiliated with the NEA)
                        • International Brotherhood of Police Officers
                        • International Association of Firefighters
                        • American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees
                        • American Federation of Teachers

            In the private sector, I have dealt with various bargaining (usually production and maintenance) units in the following industries:

                        • manufacturing
                        • public utilities
                        • retail
                        • beverage
                        • education
                        • health care
                        • construction
                        • transportation

            In the private sector, have bargained and/or been involved in contract administration/arbitration questions with locals of the following unions, as well as others:

                        • Amalgamated Transit Union
                        • Communication Workers of America
                        • International Association of Machinists
                        • International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers
                        • International Brotherhood of Teamsters
                        • International Organization of Masters, Mates and Pilots
                        • International Union of Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers
                        • Office and Professional Employees International Union
                        • Paper, Allied-International Chemical and Energy Workers International Union
                        • Service Employees International Union          
                        • Union of Needle Trade, Industrial and Technical Workers
                        • United Auto Workers
                        • United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers
                        • United Mine Workers
                        • United Paper Workers International Union
                        • United Steelworkers of America
                        • Utility Workers Union of America


            In 2004, I completed the five day course of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service on Becoming a Labor Arbitrator.  This course was taught by nationally known arbitrators and covered substantive, procedural and business aspects of labor arbitration from an arbitrator’s perspective. 


Since 2005 I have arbitrated dozens of cases in the public and private sectors involving a variety of issues including among others arbitrability, contract interpretation, past practice, discipline and discharge. I have also dealt with matters concerning the burden of proof and credibility resolutions. For a review of fourteen of my decisions see the Selected Decisions portion of this web site.

1 During the time of  association with Angoff, Goldman, Manning & Pyle, it was the oldest and largest law firm limiting its practice to the representation of unions and individuals in New England.

2 During the time of  association with Morgan, Brown & Joy, LLP (and its predecessors), it was and is the oldest and largest law firm based in New England focusing on the representation of employers/management in labor and employment law.  See present web site, www.morganbrown.com

3 MCLE is an organization created jointly by the Boston and Massachusetts Bar Associations for determining and presenting continuing legal education courses to attorneys.

4 Associated Industries of Massachusetts has more than 7,500 employers from all industries.  It represents employers on legislative and regulatory matters as well as provides advice and training in the human resources field


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primary address: 5653 Useless Bay Avenue, Unit 603, Langley, Washington 98260
secondary address: 6088 Pebble Beach Way, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
phone: 360-588-8031


All Rights Reserved. James M. Paulson.
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