Representative Cases

     I represent individuals and small businesses. I doubt any of them would like to see their name, or that of their business, showing up on my website. My duty to protect my clients’ confidences prevents me from naming their names here. In addition, many cases result in confidential settlement agreements which prevent me from sharing the names of other parties, or the settlement terms.

   Therefore, I list only a few representative matters in a generic fashion, in no particular order. The common thread is success in achieving client objectives at the earliest opportunity. The following should not be construed as a representation or warranty regarding similar results in any other case. Each case is unique and the resolution in any particular case will always turn on its unique factual and legal aspects.

  • My client was sued for breach of contract, fraud, and copyright infringement. Plaintiff sought compensatory damages in excess of $1.5M, punitive damages, and attorney’s fees. I drafted a letter, which included documentary evidence, proving plaintiff had no case. Before a response to the complaint was due, plaintiff dismissed.
  • I represented a contractor who sought to foreclose a mechanic’s lien, or be paid the amount due on the contract. After suit was filed a settlement was achieved for the full amount owed on the contract, i.e., $225,000.
  • My client was sued by his previous employer for unfair competition and misappropriation of trade secrets. Employer claimed damages in excess of $500,000 and sought statutory penalties, punitive damages, and attorney’s fees. After the employer presented its case at trial, the court granted judgment of non-suit in favor of my client and plaintiff recovered nothing.
  • An elderly woman was a trust beneficiary to a life estate in a house and lot. The trustee was to pay the utilities, taxes, and insurance. When the trustee died, his widow asserted there was no money in the trust to pay the expenses of my client’s life estate and the widow refused to pay them. The court ordered the widow, who was appointed trustee, to pay the expenses.
  • My client, an apartment renter, brought suit against the apartment owner for breach of the covenants of quiet enjoyment and habitability. Client was represented by Attorney pursuant to an hourly fee agreement. The owner was represented by Law Firm. Many months passed. Client then received a letter from Attorney advising Client that Client would have to get another lawyer – that Attorney could no longer represent Client because Attorney had accepted a position at Law Firm. Client settled his abandonment and breach of fiduciary claim for $25,000.

Results

  • My client, a real estate broker, purchased a house and lot at a foreclosure sale. Soon after, another lien holder purchased the property at its own foreclosure sale and asserted lien priority which, if granted, would have wiped-out my client’s interest in the property. My client ultimately was able to enter into a confidential settlement when the court sustained his demurrer to the other lien holder’s cross-complaint to quiet title.
  • An architect, who had refinanced his custom designed and built home during the boom years, was facing foreclosure. He had applied for a loan modification but was not holding out hope. He had been researching online and believed there was some legal maneuver he could pursue, other than bankruptcy, to save his home. I reviewed all of his documents and discussed with him the various legal theories he proposed to starve off foreclosure, which he had developed from his own online research. His best and most viable alternative was a loan modification. I pointed him to the Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America who had obtained a favorable modification for another client. There was a seminar in San Diego the coming weekend. He attended and took all required documentation. He had written confirmation of an affordable modification within the month.
  • A married couple were beneficiaries of a large estate. The wife had been handling the business and personal affairs of the decedent for some time through a General Power of Attorney. However, the decedent had named his accountant as Executor. When the decedent died, control over the decedent’s property passed to the Executor. The couple sought my assistance during the process of providing the Executor the information he needed to administer and close the estate. The estate was promptly closed and my clients received their inheritance which consisted of all the decedent’s property.
  • My clients purchased real property for approximately $1M which contained a commercial structure for their business. Several months later, the seller of the real property and my clients were joined in a lawsuit by a third-party who alleged the seller had no authority to sell the property and that the seller and my clients had colluded to deny the third-party ownership. After a successful demurrer, the third-party dismissed the entire action and expunged the Notice of Pendency of Action.
  • A court reporter was sued on an outstanding credit card debt. In order to prevent her default, I prepared an answer for her. I then discovered she had other substantial outstanding credit card debt which she could not pay. After reviewing her entire financial situation, we agreed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition would be in her best interests. However, she had made a common pre-bankruptcy mistake and it was not advisable for her to file immediately. After the necessary time had passed, I prepared her petition and schedules and appeared with her when she was examined by the Trustee at the creditor’s meeting. There were no deficiencies in her truthful petition or schedules, all her assets were exempt, and she timely received a full and complete discharge of her outstanding debt in excess of $150,000.

Published Cases:

Estate of Kennedy v. Bell Helicopter Textron, Inc., 283 F. 3d 1107
(United States Court of Appeals, 9th Circuit 2002)

Gurkewitz v. Haberman, 137 Cal.App.3d 328 (1982)

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