Judge Bianchini was appointed a Federal Magistrate Judge for The Southern District of California in 1974. After 8 1/2 years of service, he was appointed to the State Court Bench. He retired from the Superior Court in San Diego to pursue his passion for mediation as a full time neutral in 2002. He was later recruited by the Federal Courts in New York as a settlement judge for complex civil litigation and prisoner civil rights matters. During his tenure on both the state and federal benches, Judge Bianchini mediated more than 3,500 cases ranging from simple to multi-issue complex matters. Among his settlements are many multi-million-dollar verdicts in complex cases ranging from patent cases to class actions. Judge Bianchini is known to be an advocate for the settlement process while using a warm and caring approach. Many clients praise him for not giving up and truly exploring every avenue for possible settlement. One client said, "he is a wonderful person, knowledgeable, and an extremely effective mediator."
During his judicial service, he was honored as "Judge of the Year" by the San Diego Trial Lawyers, received the Foothills Bar Association Legal Professional of the Year award, received Family Law Judge of the Year Honors from the El Cajon Superior Court, and was named a “Distinguished Alumni” of San Diego State University in 2018. He was also awarded the “Witkin Award” by the San Diego County Law Library for “Excellence in the Adjudication of the Law” in 2019. Immediately prior to his retirement from the Superior Court he served, during a leave of absence from the bench in 2002, as a Senior Fulbright Scholar to the Sub-Saharan African country of Eritrea.
He flew in helicopters in Vietnam as a crew member and was awarded the Bronze Star w/Combat "V" and 3 Air Medals. He was later awarded the Legion of Merit and the Joint Services Commendation Medal.
Judge Bianchini and his wife travel frequently. He has two daughters from a previous marriage - one is in federal government law enforcement, and his oldest daughter resides in the San Francisco area where she works as an executive producer for Microsoft, having lived in New Zealand where she was a Digital Producer for the New Zealand and Hollywood movie industry. His youngest daughter is an associate in an international employment law firm. Judge Bianchini enjoys volunteer work and is involved in many foundations including the San Diego County Bar Association as a director. He is currently the Chairman of the Flying Leatherneck Historical Foundation. He is extensively involved in the sport of Sabre Fencing and was ranked 6th in the World in 2011, and was the U.S. National Champion in Veteran's Sabre Fencing - 2012 to 2013. He is a two-time Gold Medalist, a Silver Medalist, and a Bronze Medalist in Team competition at the World Veterans Fencing Championships. Judge Bianchini has an extensive aviation background. In addition to his assignment with the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing in Vietnam as a helicopter crewmember, he is a commercial, single and multi-engine instrument rated pilot, and a rated captain in the Cessna Citation (C-500) twin engine business jet. He is also a rated commercial helicopter pilot and a long-term owner of a Beechcraft Bonanza. In his spare time, Judge Bianchini enjoys teaching, playing tennis, golf, playing the piano, and tinkering with his vintage BMW motorcycle with a sidecar.
"Judge Bianchini did an excellent job establishing a relationship with our client, building trust, and explaining the reasons why settlement was our client’s best option."
- Attorney on an Employment/Discrimination Dispute
"Judge Bianchini was particularly effective with taking a relatively complex case with coverage issues and managing all parties into a reasonable agreement."
- Attorney on a Real Property/Landlord Tenant Dispute
"Judge Bianchini was fair, balanced and reasonable. He took the time to read the papers and exhibits, and his personable manner made a difficult and complex settlement easier to digest on the client’s part."
- Attorney on an Environmental Dispute
"Judge Bianchini displayed kindness and compassion during a long and difficult mediation. We hope he continues to serve in the capacity as a mediator so that he may continue to help make positive changes in peoples' lives, as he has done for us."
- Attorney, San Diego County, California
"Judge Bianchini did an outstanding job."
- Attorney on a Real Property Dispute
"Judge Bianchini was as good as gold in getting the other side's decision makers who were entrenched to move from their positions."
- Attorney, San Diego, California
"Judge Bianchini is a skilled jurist and it is an honor to work with him on my cases. I have utmost respect for him and he has carried the same thoughtfulness from the bench to mediation."
- Attorney on a business/contractual dispute
"Very helpful in proposing creative solutions. Very good with the client."
- Attorney on a Civil Rights Dispute
2007-2011 US Magistrate Judge North & Western Districts of New York
U.S. Magistrate Judge, Western District of New York (part-time) (2002-2007)
Full-Time Mediator, Arbitrator and Private Judge, Judicate West, (2002-2007)
Superior Court Judge, San Diego (1998-2002), County-wide Settlement Judge and IC Overflow Trial Judge
Municipal Court Judge, El Cajon, California (1982-1998), Presiding Judge (1993, 1997 & 1998)
U.S. Magistrate, Southern District of California (1974-1982)
Military General Courts-Martial Judge, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve (1984-1987)
Administrative Law Judge, Agricultural Labor Relations Board (1979)
U.S. Commissioner, Southern District of California (1968-1969)
Professor, National University/Thomas Jefferson School of Law (1976-2002)
Law Offices of Victor E. Bianchini, General Practice (1968-1974)
Associate Professor, San Diego State University, (1968-1974)
US Marine Corps Reserve, Colonel (1959-1991), Vietnam Combat Service (1965-1966)
Law Clerk to Chief Judge James M. Carter, Southern District of California (1963-1964)
Education & Professional Affiliations
JD – University of San Diego
BA – Political Science, San Diego State University (1960)
Certificate in Alternative Dispute Resolution, National Judicial College (2001); Extensive formal mediation training, Pepperdine University
Senior Fulbright Scholar to Country of Eritrea, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Consultant to Minister of Justice (2002)
Associate Professor, Legal Advisor, International Student Advisor, San Diego State University (1960)
Naval Justice School (1970)
San Diego County Bar Association, Chair Ethics Committee (1973)
Military Judges’ School, University of Virginia, (1983)
Chairperson, Criminal Justice, Law & Public Administration Dept., National University, Lead Faculty, 1978, 1986-1989.
Member, National University Faculty Senate, (1997)
Member, Faculty and Faculty Council National Judicial College (1994-1998)
Traveled to Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan consulting to educate judges and to establish mediation programs in court and with governmental agencies for the National Judicial College (1998)
President, San Diego County Law Library Board of Trustees (1993, 1995)
President, San Diego County Law Library Foundation Board of Trustees (1993-1995)
Federal Judicial Center Mediation Skills Program for U.S. Magistrate Judges (2003, 2012)
Pepperdine Mediation Seminars, Standard & Advanced (1998, 2000, 2012)
Certificate in Judicial Development and Alternative Dispute Resolution, National Judicial College (1998-2000)
President, Marine Corps Recruit Depot Museum Historical Society (2007-2009)
President, Marine Corps Reserve Officers Association, San Diego Chapter (2001)
Vice President, Treasurer, Director, San Diego County Bar Association Board of Directors (1978-1980)
Chairman, Board of Visitors, University of San Diego School of Law (1977), Member, (1975-1978).
San Diego Lawyer Magazine Editorial Board (2004-Present)
Achievements & Awards
Consumer Attorneys of San Diego Judge of the Year (2007)
President’s Award for Teaching Excellence in Evidence, Consumer Attorneys of San Diego (1992)
“Volunteer of the Year,” Mt. Carmel High School, Poway School District (2006)
“Trial Judge of the Year” Awarded by the San Diego Trial Lawyers Association (1992)
“President’s Award,” awarded by the San Diego Trial Lawyers Association for educational contributions as Lecturer in CLE Subjects (1991)
“Special Recognition Award” by San Diego Trial Lawyers Association for educational contributions as Lecturer in CLE Subjects (1988)
Special Award for Educational Contributions, San Diego Trial Lawyers Association
“Legal Professional of the Year,” Foothills Bar Association (“Big Footie” (as in “Foothills” Award of the Foothills Bar Association, East County Lawyers) (2001)
Family Law Judge of the Year awarded by Foothills Bar Association & El Cajon Superior Court (2002)
"Outstanding Professor" award, National University (1979)
"Legion of Merit" for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding service, United States Marine Corps for service during "Desert Shield/Desert Storm," while in Washington, D.C. (1991)
"Bronze Star" with Combat "V" for meritorious achievement in connection with operations against an opposing armed force in Vietnam, United States Marine Corps (1965-1966)
"Air Medals" (3) for meritorious achievement while participating in aerial flights involving conflict with an opposing armed force in combat in Vietnam, United States Marine Corps (1965-1966)
He is a rated Captain in the Cessna Citation C-500, two engine business jet.
He is a Commercial Helicopter rated pilot
Insurance Coverage/Bad Faith
Employment & Class Action Suits
Highly Sensitive and/or Catastrophic Personal Injury
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a medical company financed the purchase of equipment and allegedly failed to make payments.
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a business man hired two people to distribute merchandise in the United States and the couple, allegedly, took the merchandise and resold it in various ways keeping all profits.
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a business partnership dissolved leading to one party harassing the other.
Mediated settlement of malpractice claims against an accounting firm for failing to catch that personnel were embezzling from the non-profit corporation.
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when employees of a large corporation were harassed due to racial discrimination and were subjected to retaliation for reporting ethical violations.
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a delivery person embezzled assets of his employer.
Wage and Hour
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a security guard was not paid for overtime nor travel time, payments made were late and the employer failed to provide him with access to his personnel records.
Whistleblower Wrongful Term
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a university professor reported problems with the work of another professor and was ostracized and publicly criticized for reporting the problem.
This was a Clean Water Act case involving allegations of contaminated runoff by a concrete manufacturing company. In addition to the six-figure settlement amount, the Defendant company agreed to remediation at 4 sites, plus a voluntary inclusion in the preamble of the Consent Decree of an additional 7 sites.
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when medications were mailed to plaintiff allegedly without sufficient care to ensure they were kept at the appropriate temperature and delivered timely which caused significant health problems to Plaintiff.
Professional Malpractice Legal
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a client alleged that the actual work billed by the defendant attorney was unethically overpriced and overbilled.
Breach Of Contract
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a contractor was hired to remediate damage from flooding in a residence, but was not paid because his crew and subcontractors caused additional damage necessitating a new contractor be hired.
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a recorded deed of trust was overlooked and went unpaid when the property sold.
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a man was allegedly harassed by a police officer on multiple occasions for pretextual reasons.
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when police officers arrived at a premises and allegedly ordered the owner to accompany him in a search of the premises without a warrant.
This was a federal prisoner civil rights case with claims of violation of 42 USC Section 1983, Deliberate Indifference, Negligence, and Punitive Damages. This was a case of prisoner on prisoner violence resulting the Plaintiff in an irreversible vegetative state. Case settled in mediation.
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a loader ran over a construction worker's foot.
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a patron of a grocery store slipped and fell on water in the produce section.
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a dog sitter was attacked by a dog she was taking care of and suffered extensive injuries.
PI Assault and Battery
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when an intoxicated patron was punched in the face by a security guard.
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a driver failed to yield to a bicyclist crossing in a crosswalk who subsequently fell to avoid collision and was injured.
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a driver drove into an intersection on a red light and was hit by Plaintiff's vehicle.
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a dune buggy rolled over causing injuries to all passengers, but liability was contested due to assumption of the risk.
Arbitrated the value of Plaintiff's injuries when her vehicle was struck by Defendant's vehicle that had sped out of a parking area.
Auto Accident involving a defendant fleeing the CHP in a high-speed chase, resulting in an accident injuring a 16 year-old star student resulting in PTSD. Settled in mediation.
This was a wrongful death case arising out of a auto/pedestrian collision. Decedent was 91 years old and was walking in mid block across the street.
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a patron at a bar was beaten by security personnel, severely injuring the plaintiff.
Mediated settlement of claims that arose when a bench in a handicapped shower failed and plaintiff suffered injuries in the fall.