Academy Member Inducted 2015

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Just. Louis A. Lavorato (Ret.), Mediator & Arbitrator, West Des Moines, Iowa.

Just. Louis A. Lavorato (Ret.)

Louis A. Lavorato
809 Valley West Drive
West Des Moines, IA 50265
Tel: (515) 577-4064
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Recognized to Iowa Chapter for Mediation & Arbitration Other ADR Services: Early Neutral Evaluation
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From February 1979 to February 1986, Louis A. Lavorato served as a district judge in District 5C (Polk County, Iowa). He was appointed by the Iowa Supreme Court as chief judge of the district (17 counties) in 1983. As a general jurisdiction trial judge, he presided over jury trials and bench trials. As chief judge, he presided over cases in addition to administrative duties.

From February 1986 to September 2006, Mr. Lavorato  served as a justice of the Iowa Supreme Court. He was elected Chief Justice in 2000, a position he held until he retired in September 2006. From September 2006 to January 2009, he served as a senior judge, attached to the Iowa Supreme Court. He handled routine and substantive motions as well as special projects. From February 2007 to the present, he has been working as a mediator/arbitrator.

Mr. Lavorato has handled in excess of 1000 mediations since February 2007. His arbitration experience included mostly personal injury, property damage, and insurance coverage questions. During this period, he received 37 hours of mediation training.

Case Experience

  • ADA Disability
  • Admiralty
  • Agricultural
  • Appellate
  • Automotive
  • Aviation
  • Banking & Finance
  • Bankruptcy/Creditors
  • Business Dissolution
  • Civil Rights
  • Class Actions
  • Commercial/Business
  • Community Associations
  • Condominiums
  • Construction
  • Consumer Fraud
  • Contract Disputes
  • Debt Collections
  • Discrimination
  • Divorce (High Asset)
  • Education
  • EEOC
  • Elder Abuse
  • Employment
  • Environmental
  • Family Businesses
  • Franchise
  • Health Care
  • Industrial
  • Insurance
  • Intellectual Property
  • Labor/Unions
  • Land Use/Planning
  • Landlord/Tenant
  • Legal Malpractice
  • Lemon Law
  • Libel & Slander
  • Medical Malpractice
  • Mergers & Acquisitions
  • Mortgage Foreclosure
  • Nursing Homes
  • Partnerships
  • Personal Injury
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Premises Liability
  • Probate
  • Product Liability
  • Professional Liability
  • Professional Malpractice
  • Professional Negligence
  • Property Damage
  • Railroad & Trucking
  • Real Estate
  • Religious Institutions
  • Securities
  • Sexual Harassment
  • Shareholder Disputes
  • Title Disputes
  • Torts
  • Trusts / Estates
  • Wage & Hour/FMLA
  • Workers' Compensation
  • Wrongful Death


From September 1955 to June 1959, he attended Drake University, Des Moines, Iowa. He graduated with honors with a degree of Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, majoring in accounting. He was admitted to Phi Eta Sigma Fraternity (freshman honorary fraternity in recognition of high education achievement as a freshman) and to Betta Gamma Sigma Fraternity (honorary business fraternity comparable to Phi Betta Kappa in liberal arts).

From September 1959 to June 1962, he attended Drake University Law School. He graduated first in his class with the degree of Juris Doctor and was admitted to the Order of the Coif and was assistant editor of the Drake Law Review.

Memberships & Affiliations

Louis A. Lavorato received numerous awards in recognition of his achievements and service to the judicial branch over his almost 30 years of judicial work. A few of those included the following: In 1985, he received the Judicial Achievement Award from the Trial Lawyers Association of Iowa; in 1994, he received the Alumni of the Year Award from the Drake University Law School; in 1996, he received the Award of Merit from the Iowa Judges Association; in 2003, he received an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Drake University.


  • Iowa State Bar Association
  • Former member of the Uniform Jury Instructions Committee of the Iowa State Bar Association
  • Polk County Bar Association
  • Iowa Academy of Trial Lawyers
  • National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals
  • Former member and officer of what was formally known as the Iowa Trial Lawyers Association


Rates Information

$250/hour with $100/hour charged for travel.

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