Member Profile: Hon. John Leo Wagner (Ret.)

Hon. John Leo Wagner (Ret.)
Judicate West
660 S. Figueroa Street, Suite 1910
Los Angeles, CA 90017
Email: Click for email

Tel: (800) 488-8805
Fax: (714) 834-1344

CA Chapter:

Hon. John Leo Wagner (Ret.) regularly travels out of state to Nevada, New York, Oklahoma, Washington

ADR Services Include:

Mediation; Arbitration; Med-Arb; Discovery Referee; Special Master


Hon. John Leo Wagner (Ret.) has substantive case experience in the following areas...

Banking & Finance
Civil Rights
Contract Disputes
Energy Sector (Oil, Gas)
Entertainment Sector
Intellectual Property
Personal Injury
Real Estate



In 2009, 2010 and 2011, Judge Wagner was listed as one of the Top Neutrals in California by the Los Angeles and San Francisco Daily Journals. In 2007, he was listed as one of the top 32 Entertainment Power Neutrals by The Hollywood Reporter, Esq. He has been listed as a Southen California Super Lawyer in ADR in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011. He has been selected to be included in the 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011 editions of The Best Lawyers in America in the field of ADR. He is a former United States Magistrate Judge. Judge Wagner was appointed at age 31 and served for 12 years on the federal bench, from 1985 through 1997. He established and administered his court's mediation program, and served as one of its principal ADR neutrals. He mediated federal cases of all kinds, but concentrated on the court's most difficult and complex cases. He was appointed by former Chief Justice Renquist to the Court Administration and Case Management Committee of the U.S. Judicial Conference and served on its ADR Task Force. He has extensive trial experience, both on and off the bench.

After leaving the bench in 1997, he headed the ADR practice group at Los Angeles-based Irell & Manella LLP, where he continued his practice as an ADR neutral and served as the Director of the firm's ADR Center in Newport Beach. After nearly 8 years with Irell & Manella, he left the firm in March of 2005 and established a relationship with Judicate West Alternative Dispute Resolution, which now administers his full-time ADR practice. His practice as a neutral includes both mediation and arbitration, but is weighted to mediation of difficult, complex or multi-party disputes. These include business, intellectual property, entertainment, class action, environmental and toxic tort cases. He also routinely mediates professional malpractice cases, catastrophic injury cases, employment cases, insurance coverage disputes and bad faith claims.


Judge Wagner received his JD from the University of Oklahoma College of Law in 1979. He received Advanced Mediation Training while on the federal bench through the Federal Judicial Center and Endispute, Inc. He attended the Harvard University Law School Program of Instruction for Lawyers. He has since served as an ADR instructor and trainer for many distinguished organizations, including the International Academy of Mediators, the Federal Judicial Center, the United States Circuit Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, Pepperdine University's Strauss Institute of Dispute Resolution and the American Bar Association.

Memberships & Affiliations

Judge Wagner was the President of the International Academy of Mediators for 2008-2009. He also currently serves on the CPR International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution's National Panel of Distinguished Neutrals and on the International Centre for Dispute Resolution's (AAA) panel of neutrals. He has served as a member of the CPR - Georgetown Commission on Ethics and Standards of Practice in ADR. He is a Fellow of both the American College of Civil Trial Mediators and the International Academy of Mediators. He is a Master of the Judge Paul R. Michel (Los Angeles Intellectual Property) American Inn of Court and is admitted to the bar in California and Oklahoma.


Judge Wagner's hourly rate is $780 per hour for two-party matters in Southern California. His rate is $880 per hour for multiple party and complex matters, and matters in Northern California. His rate is $980 per hour with a two day minimum for out of state matters. He is available nationwide, and does not charge for non-working travel time. Domestic travel costs are included in his hourly rate. All ADR matters are booked through Judicate West. Please see for more information. Conference space and staff support are available in Downtown Los Angeles, Santa Ana, West Los Angeles, Long Beach, San Diego and San Francisco. Please call for details.


Hon. John Leo Wagner (Ret.) is a member of our CA chapter, California Academy of Distinguished Neutrals, California's premier roster of preeminent mediators and arbitrators. The CADN profile includes more specific local information, such as counties and regions served, and can be visited directly at


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