You may have heard it before – “I’m sorry.” In the context of the facts in In re Debra L. Koven, On Contempt, 2005 Cal. App. LEXIS 1818 [Cal. 2nd App. Dist., Div. 6 2005] the lawyer apologized “for the improper statements in the petitions, [and] expresses deep regret for impugning the [integrity of this] Court, and accepts the embarrassment she has brought upon herself. . . .” This did not prevent her from being held in contempt by the appellate court.
The lawyer’s approach to litigation focused on impugning the integrity of everyone in the legal system, whether judges, justices, attorneys, or expert witnesses, who obstructed the achievement of her goals. I wonder what this lawyer would have to say about mediators!
How did the court determine whether the apology was genuine? Well, you’ll have to read the interesting analysis. All to say, sometimes “I’m sorry” just doesn’t have value.
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P.S. By the way, for most of last week I was presenting my 40 hour Family Mediation Certification Training program and was unable to post to Florida Mediator.