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Victory Lap

2019 4th Quarter

Significant Accomplishments by NAMWOLF PAC Firms

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Jury Trial Victory

Accomplishment Description

Achieved plaintiff verdict in partnership dispute of multiple orthopedic surgeons in California involving the interpretation of a 40-year old partnership agreement determine whether there was a breach of contract and fiduciary duty in the way a partner was to receive money under the partnership agreement. Plaintiff had cancer and was to receive disability payments and distributions under the partnership agreement, but defendants terminated the partnership after making two payments and terminated the remaining payments. There jury unanimously determined that the defendants wrongly terminated the partnership and awarded Plaintiff almost full damages. The judge also made a legal conclusion that the partnership agreement did allow for both disability and distribution payments.

Firm Name

Tredway Lumsdaine & Doyle (TLD Law)

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Enforcement of International Arbitration Award

Accomplishment Description

Successfully resolved dispute over enforcement of an international arbitration award on behalf of a South Korean export insurer. Client was the assignee of a substantial Korean arbitration award from a Korea-based exporter, who prevailed in arbitration against a US-based importer. Successfully resolved the matter by negotiating a forbearance agreement and payment plan with the importer that included a written acknowledgment of validity of the full international arbitration award.

Firm Name

Eric D. Olson, Esq.
Lee, Hong, Degerman, Kang & Waimey PC

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Pre-litigation Settlement

Accomplishment Description

Successfully represented South Korean container shipping company to recoup substantial costs incurred when a large shipment of industrial rubber was rejected in China and returned to the United States. Successfully negotiated a settlement with the shipper that compensated client in full.

Firm Name

Eric D. Olson, Esq.
Lee, Hong, Degerman, Kang & Waimey PC

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Collection of Judgment 

Accomplishment Description

Represented a South Korean entertainment company in proceedings to enforce a judgment of over $880,000 previously obtained against a US-based concert promoter. Issued writs of execution and initiated related enforcement actions that resulted in collection of the full judgment amount plus related costs and attorney fees.

Firm Name

Peter J. Rho, Esq.
Eric D. Olson, Esq.
Omar Stokley, Esq.
Lee, Hong, Degerman, Kang & Waimey PC

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Grant of Asylum

Accomplishment Description

Represented Eritrean national in asylum proceedings in US immigration court.  While in Eritrea, client had been detained after complaining of the treatment of fellow students at a government run school.  Client had been subjected to beatings and torture after being accused of fomenting unrest at the school.  Obtained grant of asylum over government’s objections based on persecution because of political opinion.

Firm Name

Keith H. Fichtelman, Esq.
Lee, Hong, Degerman, Kang & Waimey PC

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

International Arbitration Award

Accomplishment Description

Represented Korean clothing manufacturer in arbitration against U.S. based licensor in ICC arbitration based in New York.  Obtained an award of over $496,000 in contractual damages and interest while also defeating over $3.5 million in cross-claims.

Firm Name

Keith H. Fichtelman, Esq.
Lee, Hong, Degerman, Kang & Waimey PC

 

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Grant of Asylum

Accomplishment Description

Represented a Cameroonian national seeking asylum in the United States. Client had escaped Cameroon after the French-speaking government accused client of providing aid to Anglophone separatists and belonging to outlawed opposition political party. Client had been subjected to prolonged detention and torture at the hands of Cameroonian security forces and witnessed his brother killed. Obtained grant of asylum over government’s objection on basis of persecution based on imputed political opinions.

Firm Name

Keith H. Fichtelman, Esq.
Lee, Hong, Degerman, Kang & Waimey PC

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Transaction/Real Estate Property Sale

Accomplishment Description

Represented Korean corporation in the sale of real property located in San Jose, California.  Purchaser was a technology company.  The purchase price for the real property was $31,000,000.  In addition to structuring and negotiating the purchase and sale agreement for this real property sale, our law firm helped guide the transaction towards a successful closing.   

Firm Name

Marc Vitolo, Esq.
Lee, Hong, Degerman, Kang & Waimey PC

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Merger & Acqusition

Accomplishment Description

Represented one of the largest sushi business operators in its merger with another iconic global sushi company to form one of the largest sushi companies with a combined sales and enterprise value of $425 million.  Work included due diligence, review, negotiation and preparation of transaction and financing documents and merger related filings.

Firm Name

Erich Lee, Esq.
Marc Vitolo, Esq.
Lee, Hong, Degerman, Kang & Waimey PC

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Transaction

Accomplishment Description

Negotiated and documented multiple transactions for the sale of whole loans and bulk and flow MSR (mortgage servicing rights) purchase and sale agreements, including financing MSR’s and securitization, with a deal value of over $1BB in 2018 and over $2BB in 2019 year to date.  Transaction documents included, term sheets, purchase and sale agreements, private placement memoranda, servicing rights agreements, assignment assumption and recognition agreements, securitization servicing agreements, custody agreements, indemnification agreements, pooling and servicing agreements, loan data agent agreements, as well as various certificates, notes, certifications, corporate opinions and opinions for tax, bankruptcy, enforceability and insolvency.

Firm Name

Peter J. Rho, Esq.
ee, Hong, Degerman, Kang & Waimey PC

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Textbook Publication

Accomplishment Description

Julie A. Ryan authored a published textbook on transactional lawyering skills entitled: Transactional Lawyering: An Experiential Approach to Communication and Problem-Solving (Carolina Academic Press). The textbook and accompanying teacher’s manual use a series of realistic simulation exercises and assignments based on actual transactions to immerse students into the role of a junior lawyer and expose them to writing, thinking, and problem-solving in context.

Firm Name

Julie A. Ryan, Esq.
Acceleron Law Group, LLP

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Angel Investment Fund

Accomplishment Description

Represented the Business School of a major university in the establishment of an angel investment fund formed to make capital investments in business ventures with high growth potential, giving preference to entities whose principal business activities are located in a particular region and where at least one of the founders or members of the key leadership team is minority. The Regulation D offering is being made to Accredited Investors, as defined by the Securities and Exchange Commission in Rule 501 of Regulation D, and is exempt from the registration requirements of the Securities Act of 1933 and applicable state securities laws.

Firm Name

Lisa D. Love, Esq.
Reginald A. long, Esq.
Love & Long, LLP

Practice Area Committee

 

Accomplishment Type

TRO

Accomplishment Description

After learning that its former sales manager started a competing business and was actively soliciting its clients, WSG engaged CHEN MALIN LLP to help stem the loss of business. Within a week of being engaged, the Firm secured a temporary restraining order against the defendant and, at a recent preliminary injunction trial, persuaded the Court to grant all of WSG’s requested relief and to reduce the bond amount by half.

Firm Name

CHEN MALIN LLP

Practice Area Committee

 

Accomplishment Type

TRO

Accomplishment Description

Tim Reckart and Chris Ambrosio of NAMWOLF member Firm Rusing Lopez & Lizardi, PLLC recently referred a commercial real estate dispute in Texas to CHEN MALIN LLP. The client, DPB, was engaged in a commercial real estate dispute with its landlord. Less than 2 weeks after being engaged, the Firm secured a temporary restraining order against the landlord and, at a recent preliminary injunction trial, persuaded the Court to grant DPB’s requested relief.

Firm Name

CHEN MALIN LLP

Practice Area Committee

 

Accomplishment Type

Dismissal with Prejudice 

Accomplishment Description

CHEN MALIN LLP recently secured an agreed dismissal, with prejudice, of a long-running patent case without any payments to the plaintiff. The result is notable because: (1) The plaintiff had success against prior defendants, and it was asserting patents originally developed by Cypress Semiconductor, a well-respected semiconductor company; (2) The case was not defended using traditional strategies, and the key defense is one that had been repeatedly rejected by the presiding judge (when advanced by others); and (3) The Firm’s client, a multi-national electronics company, obtained a better result than prior defendants that faced the same patents, while saving substantial amounts in attorney fees. This is the 6th patent case in the 6th state that CHEN MALIN LLP resolved for this client. Five of the six cases were resolved without payment, and a sixth case was resolved for an amount that was less than the contribution by the client’s supplier.

Firm Name

CHEN MALIN LLP

Practice Area Committee

 

Accomplishment Type

Resolution of Patent Infringement Case

Accomplishment Description

CHEN MALIN LLP was engaged by Everlight Electronics, one of the top 10 LED manufacturers in the world and a company that traditionally favors another non-NAMWOLF firm, in a competitor-to-competitor patent dispute. The case potentially implicated over 10 figures in revenues for the litigants, and the prospect for resolution was dim. But by the second year of the litigation the Firm had reduced Everlight’s exposure under the counter-claim patents to a low 5-figure range and increased the counter-party’s exposure by several multiples. At the time of confidential settlement, the counterparty was also under Court Order to submit a declaration—for each of over 1,400 accused products—to explain the representations made by that party’s counsel to the Court.

Firm Name

CHEN MALIN LLP

Practice Area Committee

 

Accomplishment Type

Contract Negotiation 

Accomplishment Description

CHEN MALIN LLP represents multiple Fortune 100 companies and government agencies in the negotiation of their strategic IT agreements (i.e., IT projects that have strategic implications for the organization). Consequential damages are generally excluded from commercial contracts, and this is particularly true in the IT industry, where the agreements are primarily mechanisms for shielding the vendors from liability. Because of that background, the Firm’s clients thought it was significant that our lawyers persuaded IT vendors (which include Fortune 100 technology companies) to provide coverage for consequential damages incurred as a result of their system’s failure.

Firm Name

CHEN MALIN LLP

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Patent Defense 

Accomplishment Description

CHEN MALIN LLP was engaged by an electronics company to evaluate potential defensive strategies against a foundational patent developed by researchers at a major U.S. university. After reviewing the file, the Firm’s lawyers noted the university’s standard agreements contained a fatal flaw that deprived the plaintiff of standing to sue. A former Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California, acting as neutral, noted the Firm’s strategy was novel, creative, and persuasive. The strategy has now been implemented in a foreign proceeding, where the case is pending.

Firm Name

CHEN MALIN LLP

Practice Area Committee

 

Accomplishment Type

MDL Victory 

Accomplishment Description

Won landmark victory for 3M Company in the federal Bair HuggerTM MDL, securing dismissal of one of the 10 largest MDLs in the country. The MDL court dismissed more than 5,000 cases against 3M after it granted the firm’s motion to exclude the opinions of plaintiffs’ experts. Measured by number of cases dismissed, Blackwell Burke’s summary judgment win represents one of the largest-impact defense wins in history. This victory followed Blackwell Burke’s defense win in the first bellwether trial in the Bair Hugger MDL and  summary judgment in 61 Bair Hugger cases in Minnesota state court. The Bair Hugger litigation has garnered extensive national media attention.

Firm Name

Blackwell Burke PA

Practice Area Committee

 

Accomplishment Type

Class Action Victory

Accomplishment Description

Won complete summary judgment for a global producer of nonwoven products in the first of its kind putative class action alleging that its flushable wipes were not in fact flushable. The federal court agreed that plaintiffs could not prove that our client’s products were false, misleading or deceptive, and plaintiffs’ claims of causation were too speculative to sustain a claim for damages. The summary judgment win followed on the heels of the successful defense against plaintiffs’ class claims, where plaintiffs voluntarily withdrew all class claims at the class certification hearing. The flushable wipes litigation has garnered extensive national media attention.

Firm Name

Blackwell Burke PA

Practice Area Committee

 

Accomplishment Type

Summary Judgment 

Accomplishment Description

Won summary judgment for Medtronic, Inc. in the first of 44 cases in state court. Plaintiff alleged that the Virtuoso implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) was defectively manufactured and failed prematurely. The court agreed with the defense that the ICD was manufactured within federally approved requirements, and all of Plaintiff’s claims were preempted by federal law.  By design, this case successfully tested Medtronic’s preemption defense.

Firm Name

Blackwell Burke PA

Practice Area Committee

 

Accomplishment Type

Appellate Victory

Accomplishment Description

Opinion from California Court of Appeal (certified for publication) upholds Superior Court’s decision to grant summary judgment in what started as a putative class action alleging joint employment of station managers. There is a clear holding that the “ABC” test, adopted by the California Supreme Court for misclassification cases in Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court (2018) 4 Cal.5th 903, does not apply in joint employer cases. Instead, the framework established in Martinez v. Combs (2010) 49 Cal.4th 35 continues to apply for joint employer cases. This leaves the burden of proof to establish an employment relationship solely on the plaintiff and minimizes disruption of existing business relationships. Gary Lafayette argued the appeal. Henderson v. Equilon Enterprises, LLC, No. A151626, 2019 WL 4942458 (Cal. Ct. App. Oct. 8, 2019).

Firm Name

Lafayette & Kumagai, LLP

Practice Area Committee

 

Accomplishment Type

Summary Judgment 

Accomplishment Description

Obtained summary judgment on behalf of a Fortune 50 company in an employment matter in which Plaintiff alleged disability discrimination, failure to accommodate, wrongful termination and retaliation. Susan Kumagai argued that Plaintiff did not meet the definition of a person with a disability. Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment was granted in full.

Firm Name

Lafayette & Kumagai, LLP

Practice Area Committee

 

Accomplishment Type

Municipal bond Financing

Accomplishment Description

Served as Co-Bound Counsel to DASNY relating to their School Districts Revenue Bond Financing Program. DASNY served as Issuer on 5 series of tax-exempt and/or taxable bonds with varying maturities not to exceed 31 years in an aggregate amount of $482,365,000.

Firm Name

BurgherGray LLP

Practice Area Committee

 

Accomplishment Type

Municipal bond Financing

Accomplishment Description

Served as Disclosure Counsel to NYLDC (an ESD local development corporation) with respect to the issuance and sale of the $650,000,000 NYLDC second priority liberty revenue refunding bonds, and the $950,000,000 Commercial Mortgage Pass-Through Certificates with respect to which the bonds are subordinately-secured, being sold simultaneously with the bonds.

Firm Name

BurgherGray LLP

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Summary Judgment 

Accomplishment Description

Obtained summary judgment resulting in a dismissal with prejudice and award for costs on behalf of a retail client in a premises liability action. In dismissing the claim, the United States District Court held there was no admissible evidence that the retailer had actual knowledge of a dangerous posed by a barrier marking an outdoor sales area.  Further, there was no evidence the retailer should have known of any danger posed by the barrier.

Firm Name

Ashley Larson, Esq.
Patrick Sweet, Esq.
Sutton Booker P.C.

Practice Area Committee

 

Accomplishment Type

Defense Verdict

Accomplishment Description

After a 7-day trial, HM&B Attorneys Jerry Hamilton and William Edwards prevailed obtaining a complete defense verdict on behalf of a Fortune 100 retailer in a slip and fall incident that took place on Christmas Eve 2016. Plaintiff sought over $1.5 million dollars in damages. HM&B showed that not only that Plaintiff had misrepresented her prior medical conditions, but that the incident could not have taken place in the manner that Plaintiff described.

Firm Name

Hamilton, Miller & Birthisel

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Summary Judgment 

Accomplishment Description

Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals grants HM&B partner Schuyler Smith’s summary judgment on behalf of a Fortune 100 retailer in negligence claim involving slip and fall on basis that premises owner had no actual or constructive notice of the condition even though an employee inspected area 2 minutes prior to the incident and despite the use of CCTV footage of the incident used as circumstantial evidence of notice.

Firm Name

Hamilton, Miller & Birthisel

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Summary Judgment 

Accomplishment Description

Federal Court grants HM&B attorney Patricia Concepcion’s motion for summary judgment on behalf of a Fortune 100 retailer in a slip and fall claim on the basis that the wooden pallet on the floor were an open and obvious condition for which retailer did not owe a duty to warn of and the incident was not foreseeable.

Firm Name

Hamilton, Miller & Birthisel

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Summary Judgment 

Accomplishment Description

Federal Court grants HM&B’s summary judgment on behalf of a Fortune 100 retailer in a slip and fall claim on the basis that it did not have actual or constructive notice of the hangers on the floor prior to the alleged incident which retailer did not owe a duty to warn of and the incident was not foreseeable. This team was led by partner William Edwards and supported by attorneys Patricia Concepcion and Josh Orlan.

Firm Name

Hamilton, Miller & Birthisel

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Defense Victory

Accomplishment Description

Obtained a defense verdict in a breach of contract case based upon the defense of impossibility.  Plaintiffs claimed hundreds of thousands of dollars in damages for rent, moving expenses, hotel and food expenses, and replacement of personal property.  The jury agreed with the defendant owners that it was impossible to perform under the lease contract through the fault of no one.

Firm Name

Jackie Booker, Esq.
Lily Nierenberg, Esq.
Sutton Booker P.C.

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Summary Judgment 

Accomplishment Description

Successfully obtained summary judgment for an employer client in a wrongful termination, retaliation, and defamation case. Lead attorney, Henry Gonzalez, vigorously argued that plaintiff was properly accommodated and terminated for misconduct. The judge ruled in favor of Andrade Gonzalez’s client on all nine causes of action.

Firm Name

Andrade Gonzalez LLP

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Trial Victory

Accomplishment Description

Sapientia Trial Team won a substantial federal court trial verdict of $585,000 in a privacy-breach matter against the City of Minneapolis and two of its officers.

Firm Name

Sonia Miller-Van Oort, Esq.
Jon Strauss, Esq.
Sapientia Law

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Summary Judgment 

Accomplishment Description

Obtained summary judgment for an automotive manufacturer in an action involving fraud-based and federal breach of warranty claims on the basis that the plaintiff’s claims were barred by a prior class action settlement.  The plaintiff’s claims were barred because he was a member of the class and he failed to properly exclude himself from the class action. 

Firm Name

Wilson Turner Kosmo LLP

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Summary Judgment 

Accomplishment Description

Prevailed on summary judgment in a disability discrimination/failure to accommodate case where the plaintiff was alleging the company illegally terminated him after granting him seven months of leave.  The company prevailed, proving the plaintiff was not a qualified individual with a disability at the time of his termination. 

Firm Name

Wilson Turner Kosmo LLP

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Motion to Dismiss 

Accomplishment Description

Secured dismissal without leave to amend on first motion to dismiss in nationwide TCPA class action on emergency exception grounds where alleged phone calls were made pursuant to a USDA Class I Safety Recall, thus setting the record straight that client was doing the right thing to protect consumers and saving client from onerous and expensive discovery.

Firm Name

Wilson Turner Kosmo LLP

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Summary Judgment 

Accomplishment Description

Obtained summary judgment for a Fortune 500 company in a product liability case involving a high-speed head-on collision between two vehicles resulting in brain injury, perforated bowel, and other soft tissue injuries to one of the occupants in the subject vehicle. 

Firm Name

Wilson Turner Kosmo LLP

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Summary Judgment 

Accomplishment Description

Obtained summary judgment for company in a premises liability and negligence case arising out of a fitness/gym accident after demonstrating that the plaintiff signed a valid informed consent and release of liability agreement and that the primary assumption of the risk doctrine barred the plaintiff’s claims.

Firm Name

Wilson Turner Kosmo LLP

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Appellate Victory 

Accomplishment Description

Summary judgment affirmed in favor of American automobile manufacturer in lawsuit brought by a used truck purchaser alleging multiple causes of action for fraud, as well as violations of various consumer protection statutes.  Persuaded Court of Appeal that claims were barred as res judicata based on purchaser’s failure to opt-out of earlier nationwide class action, despite argument that he was never sent class notice.

Firm Name

Robert Shields, Esq.
Robert Dixon, Esq.
Mark Rein, Esq.
Wilson Turner Kosmo LLP

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Demurrer

Accomplishment Description

Obtained demurrer without leave to amend on all claims alleged against clients. Claims included violation of Unruh Act, harassment in violation of the FEHA and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Firm Name

Lois Kosch, Esq.
Martina Nagle, Esq.
Wilson Turner Kosmo LLP

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Appellate Victory 

Accomplishment Description

Successfully appealed trial court’s denial of motion to compel arbitration with an award of costs awarded to our client.  Case subsequently settled for 10% of earlier demand and less than what was offered almost two years prior in an Offer to Compromise pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure section 998. 

Firm Name

Lonny Zilberman, Esq.
Krystal Weaver, Esq.
Wilson Turner Kosmo LLP

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Motions Practice 

Accomplishment Description

Successfully opposed fee motions in two consumer warranty matters against the same law firm resulting in rulings that significantly reducing the demanded fees.  In one matter, the Court reduced the total hours billed by nearly 25 percent.  In the other matter, the Court reduced counsel’s hourly rate from $655 to $275. 

Firm Name

Robert Shields, Esq.
James Leonard, Esq.
Elizabeth Rein, Esq.
Wilson Turner Kosmo LLP

Practice Area Committee

Accomplishment Type

Summary Judgment Victories (x4)

Accomplishment Description

Prevailed on four separate defense Motions for Summary Judgment for an electric utility company in cases where one journeyman lineman was killed and three were severely injured as a result of an arc-flash.  In all, plaintiffs were seeking tens of millions of dollars in general damages plus punitive damages.

Firm Name

Irwin Evans, Esq.
David Yang, Esq.
Alex Su, Esq.
Wilson Turner Kosmo LLP

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