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At CRLS we are committed to providing the highest level of professional and experienced service to prevent, manage and resolve disputes.

We believe imbalanced relationships and communication are at the

core of conflict.

Our Services, Programs and Trainings are developed from the following guiding principles: 

Relationship Building

  • Understanding the need for a balance of power and respect in a relationship.

  • Teaching communication principles such as the barriers and filters affecting communication and listening strategies.

  • Using the “art of inquiry” to shift perspective, clarify issues and explore options.

  • Coaching and empowering individuals to cope with conflict without fear.

Conflict Management

  • Helping organizations improve personnel and conflict management skills and systems.

  • Applying organizational development principles to specific situations.

  • Training management and staff to be more effective in interpersonal conflict, meetings, negotiations, personnel processes, and policy development.

Facilitation of disputes

  • Using negotiation strategies and collaborative problem solving to resolve conflict, avoid the cost and stress of litigation and achieve desired goals.

  • Addressing conflict early to sidestep problems that could develop into legal claims.

  • Mediation and arbitration of civil complaints and contract disagreements.

  • Group facilitation of community and agency disputes.   

Martin Fine


As head legal officer, Martin Fine has over 20 years of experience managing litigation for a number of agencies and organizations. In an effort to lessen ever increasing legal expenses, Martin developed multiple in house conflict resolution programs.


In 1995, Martin formed Conflict Resolution & Legal Services (CRLS), to help organizations, agencies and businesses obtain cost effective conflict resolution services and training. Martin believes Conflict Resolution is a dynamic process that recognizes the importance of relationships. He also understands the need to minimize costs and disruption.


"Martin Fine is an extraordinary mediator. Martin has a special ability to work with people and mediate disputes under extremely difficult circumstances. He understands how to help clients create positive, win-win solutions. In working with Common Ground Martin was instrumental in developing mediation programs that greatly reduced litigation and workers compensation claims for clients in a number of areas. For example, he helped develop a Municipal Citizens' Police Complaint Process and also created a school district mediation program. Because of his enormous expertise and understanding of the field of dispute resolution, Martin served on the Advisory Board for Common Ground in the development of the Conflict Resolution Certificate Program at the University of California, Davis."

Beth Greenwood, Former Director of Common Ground, University of California, Davis

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