Book cover of Structured Negotiation, A Winning Alternative to Lawsuits

Structured Negotiation: A Winning Alternative To Lawsuits

Available Now from the American Bar Association and on Amazon and other on-line book sellers

From Walmart to Major League Baseball to the City and County of San Francisco, Lainey Feingold, her clients and co-counsel have convinced some of the nation’s largest organizations to deliver far reaching results. How she accomplished this without filing a single lawsuit is now the subject of a path-breaking new book.

Titled Structured Negotiation, a Winning Alternative to Lawsuits, the book is a nuts and bolts guide for attorneys and advocates in all fields who want an effective new strategy to resolve legal claims.

. . . the Structured Negotiation model provides a detailed roadmap for principled peacemaking in complex cases. David Hoffman, Esq., Founder, Boston Law Collaborative, LLC; John H. Watson, Jr. Lecturer on Law, Harvard Law School

As one of America’s leading civil rights lawyers, Lainey Feingold uses Structured Negotiation to obtain far-reaching settlements without litigation. Now she shares her secrets. This book should be required reading for lawyers and law students alike.
Samuel R. Bagenstos, Frank G. Millard Professor of Law, University of Michigan Law School; Former Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights

Lainey Feingold presented about her book to our law school students and faculty in February, 2017. Everyone was engaged and connecting some of their own experiences and aspirations with Lainey’s approach to solving systemic problems and overcoming system barriers without the need for costly and lengthy litigation. Lainey vividly demonstrates that the point of law is to improve society, and the toolbox of lawyers needs to include Structured Negotiation! Lorne Sossin, Dean, Osgoode Hall Law School

Lainey’s book can be purchased from online book sellers and from the American Bar Association. Use coupon code LFLEGAL10 to receive 10% off the purchase price when you buy the book from the ABA.

Buy Lainey’s book from the ABA

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For readers with print disabilities, the Structured Negotiation book is available on Bookshare.

Please contact us if you would like to be notified about book-related events and behind-the-scenes articles about the stories and issues in the book.

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What is Structured Negotiation?

Structured Negotiation is a dispute resolution method. It was developed by Lainey Feingold and civil rights lawyer Linda Dardarian to resolve technology and information access claims of the blind community. With the book’s publication, the dispute resolution process is now available to lawyers and advocates in other practice areas who want a legal strategy that focuses on solution and avoids the high-stress, high-conflict and high-cost of litigation.

A winning lawsuit alternative, Structured Negotiation delivers results. Its framework is premised on the idea that legal claims can be resolved equitably — and cost effectively — if stakeholders are able to form relationships and communicate openly with each other. Structured Negotiation avoids depositions and expert battles. Instead, it is a dispute resolution method built on the collaborative notion that if parties seek common ground, instead of digging their heels into legal arguments, solutions to even complex problems can emerge.

Lawsuits play an important role in moving society forward. But filing a complaint should not be the only option for claims resolution. The legal profession — and the public it serves — deserve alternatives that are less costly, less stressful, and more cooperative. Clients need a forum where their stories matter and where they can be — and feel — heard. Champions in the public and private sector need a dispute resolution process that allows them to do the right thing without having to first prove there is no problem to begin with. In an engaging and easy-to-read style, laced with examples from twenty years of Structured Negotiation, Lainey’s new book gives readers another set of tools.

Nuts, Bolts, and Stories

Lainey’s book brings the nuts and bolts of Structured Negotiation to life with stories about the people Lainey has worked with and the issues she has worked on:

  • Blind baseball fans who worked in Structured Negotiation with Major League Baseball Advanced Media to make MLB’s digital properties accessible to everyone
  • A Charles Schwab investor who relies on talking software and a braille display to make fast paced options trades who used Structured Negotiation to improve web access of the trading site
  • A blind lawyer whose insistence on accessing ATMs independently led to successful Structured Negotiations about Talking ATMs with most of the largest financial institutions in the United States.
  • Pharmacy customers who cannot read standard print prescription labels and the national pharmacies — including Walmart, Walgreens and CVS — who worked with them in Structured Negotiation to find a solution.

Structured Negotiation empowers advocates, giving them a place at the table and a voice in the conversation. And it encourages corporate and government champions to do the right thing.

Praise for Structured Negotiation

Here is a sample of the praise Lainey’s Structured Negotiation book has received. Read all posted feedback about the book here.

Lainey Feingold’s thoughtful and experienced-based distillation of her new approach to resolving disputes through Structured Negotiation has the potential to make a major impact on how we resolve disputes. Bearing strong similarities to Collaborative Law, and integrating well with mediation, the Structured Negotiation model provides a detailed roadmap for principled peacemaking in complex cases. David Hoffman, Esq., Founder, Boston Law Collaborative, LLC; John H. Watson, Jr. Lecturer on Law, Harvard Law School

This fantastic guide to structured negotiations provides valuable insights for anyone interested in becoming a better advocate. Readers learn effective strategies through easy-to-follow explanations with fascinating anecdotes from the author’s work as a disability rights attorney. I really enjoyed reading this book and appreciate all the lessons within.
Haben Girma, White House “Champion of Change”, Forbes 30 under 30 leader, and BBC Women of Africa Hero

If you are a lawyer, an advocate or a person who would like to learn how to reduce conflict in situations where people share vastly different perspectives, you’ve got to read this book.
Jessie Lorenz, Structured Negotiation participant and Executive Director, Independent Living Resource Center San Francisco

What a great resource – packed with useful information, legalese made readable, and it shares valuable insights on the way digital accessibility is (mis)understood by those outside our community of advocates and consumers. If you care about equal access to communications technology, get the book, read it, and share it widely. It will help you talk about a complex issue directly and positively.
Sharron Rush, Founder and Executive Director, Knowbility (Austin, Tx)

Read more comments about the Structured Negotiation book.

Why are there Hexagons on the cover of the book?

The Structured Negotiation book cover has a background of 3-D white and gray hexagons. Who knew that a hexagon was the perfect shape for a book about a cooperative and effective way to resolve disputes?! Read the post about hexagons on the cover of the book.

Excerpts

From the Introduction

Structured Negotiation has a powerful track record. Over the past twenty years the process has led to more than sixty settlement agreements with some of the largest organizations in the United States. Bank of America, Walmart, Charles Schwab, CVS, Major League Baseball, Denny’s, Anthem, Inc., and Weight Watchers are just a few of the private entities that have traded the stress, cost and procedural wrangling of litigation for Structured Negotiation. Settlements with the City and County of San Francisco, Houston’s Metropolitan Transit Authority, the city of Denver, the American Cancer Society, and Massachusetts General Hospital demonstrate that the process is a viable litigation alternative for disputes with non-profit and public sector agencies, as well as with private companies. Introduction| Structured Negotiation

Read more excerpts from the Structured Negotiation book.

What the Book Teaches Readers

Readers will come away from this book knowing how to practice Structured Negotiation. Readers will learn:

  • How to write an opening letter that invites participation. The only tone in a complaint is we’re right, you are wrong. The Structured Negotiation opening letter is different. Think of it as an invitation to negotiate.
  • How to establish a ground rules document that all parties sign at the beginning of the relationship.
  • How to hold collaborative meetings and share information without discovery battles and expensive, contentious depositions
  • How to bring experts into the process without battles, affidavits, motions, depositions, or runaway expenses
  • How to resolve disputes while maintaining relationships
  • How to draft the settlement document using strategies designed to get past fear that can obstruct resolution — and When to bring in a mediator or even file a settlement in court.
  • How the Structured Negotiation media strategy supports negotiating goals and builds relationships
  • How Structured Negotiation settlements are monitored and enforced, ensuring commitments are met.
  • How to maintain the Structured Negotiation mindset that allows collaboration to flourish

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Simplified Summary

This page has information about Lainey’s book. The American Bar Association is publishing the book in the Fall of 2016.  The book is about Structured Negotiation, a way to solve legal disputes without filing a lawsuit. Lainey has used this method for twenty years.  The book will teach lawyers a new way to help clients.  Lainey has used Structured Negotiation with blind people to make websites and other technology easier to use.  The method will work to solve other types of legal problems. [Back to top of the page.]