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Janice Sperow, Arbitrator, La Mesa, California.

Janice Sperow

Sperow ADR Services
4305 Beverly Drive
La Mesa, CA, 91941
Tel: (619) 508-6868
Fax: (619) 508-6868
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Recognized to California Chapter for Arbitration Other ADR Services: Discovery Referee, Early Neutral Evaluation, Fact Finding, Med-Arb, Mini-Trial Judge, Special Master
Video Conferencing
  • Practice Commenced: 1989
  • Total Mediations (as of Sep 2020): 12
  • Total Arbitrations (as of Sep 2020): 297
Practice Percentages


After successful careers as a law professor at University of San Diego, Managing Partner at Ruiz & Sperow, and litigator at Morrison & Foerster, Janice has turned her 25+ years’ experience as an Arbitrator into her full time passion.

As a full time Arbitrator, Sperow has served as an Arbitrator in over 175 cases, ranging from single issue, one-day hearings to complex, multi-jurisdictional, multi-party, month-long hearings. She runs arbitrations smoothly, timely, and fairly. As counsel, Sperow participated in 1000s of alternative dispute resolutions, including negotiations, settlement conferences, mediation, facilitated meetings, fact-finding, collective bargaining, and of course, arbitrations. Significantly, she handled two of the largest arbitrations in history.

Ms. Sperow received her bachelor's degree from the University of California at Berkeley, graduating magna cum laude with high honors. She received her Juris Doctorate from the University of California, San Francisco, Hastings College of the Law, graduating summa cum laude and second out of over 400 students. While in law school, Ms. Sperow received numerous awards for high scholastic achievement, including a Milton Green scholarship, Order of the Coif, Thurston Society and six American Jurisprudence awards. While at law school, Ms. Sperow externed for Chief Judge J. Clifford Wallace of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. After law school, Ms. Sperow served as a judicial clerk for Judge Richard J. Cardamone of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, the first Hastings graduate to clerk for a judge of the Second Circuit.

After her clerkship, Ms. Sperow joined Morrison & Foerster, a 1000+ attorney international law firm headquartered in San Francisco where she specialized in complex commercial litigation in a variety of areas, on behalf of both plaintiffs and defendants, including: employment, labor, discrimination, intellectual property, energy, trade secret, contract, fraud, banking, aviation and Title VII law. As a new associate, she represented a small San Francisco equipment distributor plaintiff on whose behalf she second chaired a 4 week jury trial resulting in a 1.4 million plaintiff's verdict. After this, her first jury trial, Ms. Sperow continued to represent both plaintiffs and defendants in a variety of business and employment litigation matters, handling numerous jury trials, bench trials, arbitrations, mediations and grievances. As a senior litigator at Morrison & Foerster, Janice Sperow helped defend the then largest Title VII class action in history involving 1,093 claimants and an estimated $2 billion exposure, to successful global resolution. Just before leaving Morrison & Foerster, Ms. Sperow was lead counsel for an alternative energy manufacturer in its $100 million breach of contract and fraud suit against the local utility, Pacific Gas & Electric. While at Morrison & Foerster, Ms. Sperow worked for State Farm Insurance Companies, Wells Fargo Bank, Pacific Enterprises, California State Automobile Association (AAA), Continental Airlines, McCormick-Morgan, Avantek, Fujitsu, GWF Power Systems, Inc., the San Francisco Airport, and many other corporate, private, and public sector clients.

Ms. Sperow also employed Alternative Dispute Resolution techniques on behalf of her Morrison & Foerster clients, handling dozens of arbitrations, mediations, and neutral case resolutions. She also served as an arbitrator and a chief arbitrator for the Bar Association of San Francisco from 1989 to 1995 and as arbitrator and arbitration panel chair for FINRA, the Financial Industry Regulatory Agency from 1999 to the present (formerly NASD). After leaving the firm, Ms. Sperow was appointed by Mayor Willie Brown in 1997 to serve as Hearing Officer for municipal railway public transportation disputes. Her appointment was accepted by both labor and management. 

Ms. Sperow joined Ruiz & Sperow, LLP in February 1995 as the firm's Managing Partner. Since joining the firm, Ms. Sperow has represented, among other clients, Laurel Technical Services, Alameda Unified School District, a joint venture comprised of former Dinwiddie Construction executives, Berkeley Unified School District, IFF Multi-Media Company, Fresno Unified School District, International Manufacturing Services (IMS), a consortium of former Granny Goose executives, San Jose Unified School District, San Francisco Airport Commission, California Public Utilities, Los Angeles Unified School District, San Francisco Unified School District and many other corporate and public sector clients. At Ruiz & Sperow, Ms. Sperow concentrated on employment and labor matters, sexual harassment, race, age, and gender discrimination, EEOC investigations, OCR matters, PERB hearings, grievances and arbitrations, board advice and counseling, training and workshops, and workplace violence. 

In January 1998, Ms. Sperow opened the firm's Southern California office in San Diego where she continued to serve both her Bay Area and Southern California clients. Ms. Sperow was a member of the Greater San Diego Chamber of Commerce and served on the Chamber's Business Education Roundtable and Legislative Initiatives Subcommittee. Ruiz & Sperow retired its litigation practice in 2015 and the firm in 2018 but both named partners remain active in arbitrations, mediations, facilitation, and trainings.

Ms. Sperow served as an adjunct Professor of Law at USD teaching Legal writing, research and oral advocacy for the academic year 2004 to 2005. She returned as Director of the lawyers of skills program from 2006 to 2007 and as adjunct Professor of Law teacher of Advanced Legal Writing and Analysis from 2007 to 2017, Fundamentals of Bar Writing in 2011, and Legal Analysis of Criminal Procedure in 2009. In October 2016, Ms. Sperow joined Powers Grewal as of Counsel to advise on and evaluate civil claims. In December 2016, Ms. Sperow also joined Bar MD as a Professor to tutor bar examinees. Ms. Sperow has also privately tutored bar examiners and coached attorneys on writings skills. 

Ms. Sperow retired from USD in August 2017 and decided to turn her part-time service as an arbitrator since 1989 into a full time passion. Ms. Sperow is currently an arbitrator for the American Arbitration Association (AAA)'s commercial, employment, and consumer panels, the National Arbitration & Mediation Association (NAM), the National Futures Association (NFA), ROSE IPR Arbitration (intellectual property arbitrations), the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), FINRA, and the Better Business Bureau (BBB). In 2018, Ms. Sperow was appointed as a Judge Pro Tem for the San Diego County Court and serves as an arbitrator and mediator on the San Diego Superior Court Civil Mediation Panel.

Case Experience

  • ADA Disability
  • Anti-Trust
  • Appellate
  • Automotive
  • Aviation
  • Banking & Finance
  • Civil Rights
  • Class Actions
  • Commercial/Business
  • Consumer Fraud
  • Contract Disputes
  • Debt Collections
  • Discrimination
  • Education
  • EEOC
  • Elder Abuse
  • Employment
  • Energy Sector (Oil/Gas)
  • Insurance
  • Intellectual Property
  • Landlord/Tenant
  • Legal Malpractice
  • Lemon Law
  • Libel & Slander
  • Local Govt./Municipalities
  • Product Liability
  • Professional Fees
  • Professional Liability
  • Professional Malpractice
  • Professional Negligence
  • Public Policy
  • Securities
  • Sexual Harassment
  • Shareholder Disputes
  • Torts
  • Trademarks/Patents
  • Unfair Competition
  • Utilities
  • Wage & Hour/FMLA


  • 2017 AAA Arbitrator Training
  • 2017 BBB Arbitrator Training
  • 1999-Present NASD & FINRA Arbitrator Training
  • 1983–86 University of California at San Francisco, Hastings College of Law. Graduated with Juris Doctorate summa cum laude, second out of over 400 students.
  • 1978–82 University of California at Berkeley. Graduated with Bachelor of Arts magna cum laude with High Honors

Memberships & Affiliations

  • Hearing Officer, Port of San Diego, Personnel Advisory Board, 2020-2023
  • President of the National Association of Women Lawyers as well as previously Executive Board Member, Treasurer-Elect, and Health Care Committee Co-Chair.
  • American Bar Association, she served as Vice-Chair of the International Human Rights Litigation Subcommittee and was a member of Law Practice Management Section and Women Rainmakers Interest Group. Served on the ABA Commission of the Status of Women in the Law.
  • Second Vice-President of the California Women Lawyers, as well as participating as a member of the Executive Committee, the Board of Governors, the Chair of CWL Health Care Task Force, and Educational Foundation.
  • Received the California Women Lawyers President’s Award.
  • Served as Chair of the California State Bar Litigation Section Education Committee.

Rates Information


Daily Rate for Hearing $4250.

Hourly rate charged for pre-hearing work.

No hearing charge if canceled 45 or more days from the first hearing date. If canceled between 44 and 30 days from the first hearing date, retain 10% of the daily rate for the number of total hearing days reserved. If canceled between 15-29 days before the first hearing date, retain 20%. If canceled between 8-14 days before the first hearing date, retain 50%. If canceled seven days or less before the first hearing date, retain 90%.

Willing to travel and do not charge for travel time. Do not charge for airfare and hotel for San Francisco. Charge for other locations' travel out-of-pocket expenses and hard costs if outside Greater San Diego area. No charge for parking or meals during arbitration unless out of San Diego area. Will seek reimbursement for air and hotel travel costs, if any, for locations outside the Greater San Diego area other than San Francisco. Any charged expenses are at the out-of-pocket rate with no added surcharge; receipts will be provided if requested.

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