areas of expertise

Business/Corporate/Small Business
Mediation is a superior alternative to litigation as a way to resolve all kinds of business disputes.  Quick, cost-effective, confidential and tailored to your case, mediation enables all parties to satisfy their needs and interests.
Some disputes I’ve recently mediated include:
  • Breach of contract for sale of a bank
  • Break-up of family-owned business
  • Conflict among successor landowners over cleanup of commercial property
  • Action for breach of warranty between buyer and seller over computer equipment under the Uniform Commercial Code
  • Breach of lease for office-sharing
  • Insurer subrogation action over destruction of residential home by fire
  • Commercial property foreclosure and accounting
Personal Injury/Negligence/Product Liability
I bring over ten years of process training and experience to more than 30 years substantive trial and litigation work in negligence, personal injury, and product liability. These disputes readily lend themselves to be mediated rather than litigated resolutions.  Individual litigants avoid the anxiety, frustration, and delay that awaits them in litigation.  Corporate parties remove the risks of litigation roulette and bad publicity.   A customized, mediation process enables all parties to fashion a resolution confidentially, quickly, inexpensively and without the publicity and pressure of a public trial.
Family Services/Domestic Relations
Mediation is a superb way to resolve domestic relations conflicts quickly, confidentially, sensitively, and effectively for all family members involved.  Whether the conflict is pre-divorce, divorce, post-judgment, or parenting time, mediation enables families to satisfy their needs and interests in a safe environment and with minimum expense.
Although Joe is comfortable mediating family matters solo, he believes “men are from Mars and women are from Venus,” that is, the best way to mediate family disputes is through use of a co-mediation model, where Joe pairs with an experienced female mediator, often a non-lawyer trained in counseling or psychology.  This eliminates any perceived bias a party may feel where a single mediator is a member of the opposite sex and immediately sets a divorcing couple at ease.  Co-mediators also bring both male and female perspectives to bear on family problems.  Concerned about the cost of two mediators?  Don’t be.  Joe can often employ a co-mediation model for costs that approximate that of a single mediator.  He will be happy to share biographical information on potential co-mediators and to discuss costs with you.
Family Services/Probate/Guardianship
Mediation is an ideal way to deal with family conflicts.  The issue may be how to handle medical care, guardianship, or financial conservatorship for an elderly loved one.  Or conflict may arise over a will or how to distribute assets if a family member should die without a will.  Whatever the family conflict, mediation affords family members a chance to speak confidentially and safely to one another with the help of an experienced neutral who can help them approach family problems in a new and more productive light.  Joe has mediated dozens of family conflicts over elder care, guardianship, conservatorship and estate distribution.

dispute resolution
areas of service


Auto suppliers
Auto product liability
Business disputes
Class actions
Chemical and drug product liability
Commercial transactions
Industrial product liability
Intellectual property
Personal injury
Shareholder disputes
Toxic torts

personal injury/
product liability

Auto negligence
Construction accidents
Fires, explosions, electrocutions
Toxic torts
Industrial products
Chemicals and pharmaceuticals
General negligence



Divorce and Separation
Elder Care
Estate Distribution

Working with Joe Basta


Beginning as federal judicial law clerk in 1974, and after that for over 34 years with a large, Detroit-based firm, I have tried and litigated hundreds of state and federal lawsuits before judges and juries in the trial and appellate courts of Michigan, the …


I took my first 40-hour mediation training for general civil disputes over a decade ago.  Since then my training has included mediation in domestic relations, adult guardianship, special education, and Native American peacemaking.


In addition to my private mediation practice I am a volunteer mediator for Community Dispute Resolution Program Centers in Washtenaw and Wayne Counties, winning awards for outstanding mediation work.