Jump to Navigation
Results for Clients
Premises Liability
Vehicle Accident Liability
Medical Malpractice
Long Term Care Liability
Lemon Law/Warranty Defense
Employment Litigation
Security/Third Party Violent Crime
Pharmacy Liability
Public Entity Defense
Trucking Industry Defense
Intellectual Property Rights
Aircraft Liability
Assault & Battery
Municipal Transportation
Legal Malpractice
Family Law
Business and Professions Code Section 17200
Fraud
False Arrest/False Detention
Products Liability
Construction Defect
Insurance Coverage
Insurance Bad Faith
Private Bus Fleet Liability
Director & Officer Liability

Premises Liability

ATTORNEY

CASE SUMMARY

RESOLUTION RESULT

Douglas D. Guy
The plaintiff, a 58-year old lifelong golfer, was playing golf at a resort with two friends. It was morning and the golf course was wet from dew. The plaintiff drove his golf cart down the cart path on hole number two. The resort utilizes railroad ties on each side of the cart path to keep the carts on the path in certain designated areas. The plaintiff exited his cart and retrieved a few clubs from his golf bag. He began walking toward his golf ball and stepped on top of a railroad tie. He slipped and severely fractured his ankle, requiring extensive surgery and ultimate fusion. The plaintiff received all medical treatment at the Navy hospital and claimed meds of approximately $25,000.00 and LOE as an insurance salesman of $40,000.00. The plaintiff argued the railroad ties presented a dangerous condition and there were better alternative designs that could have been used. He also claimed he should have been warned of the alleged dangerous conditions.

We put on evidence of no other injuries regarding railroad ties, along with the railroad ties being open and obvious. During cross examination, the plaintiff's expert conceded the railroad ties were, in fact, open and obvious, and conceded his analysis was flawed since the pictures he relied upon did not accurately depict the accident scene on the day of the accident. The jury deliberated for less than an hour and returned a 12-0 defense verdict.
Defense Verdict
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff, a 67 year old man, tripped and fell on strap hanging off of a pallet of merchandise at a warehouse retail store. Alleged a torn rotator cuff and a compression fracture of a lumbar vertebrae. Claimed over $50,000 in medical bills. Our defense: The merchandise in the aisle was open and obvious and no negligence by retailer's inspection and maintenance of the store.Defense Verdict
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff shattered her right wrist when she tripped over a pillow partially protruding into the aisle. Plaintiff had surgery with placement of external fixator and presented over $40,000 in special damages. Plaintiff had deformity, scarring and the need for future surgery. Plaintiff attorney asked the jury for an award of $250,000. Our defense: the pillow was open and obvious; warehouse retailer's inspection routine was reasonable and within the standard of the industry. Jury apportioned 85% fault to plaintiff. Verdict for the amount of plaintiff's medical bills, $32,500.Verdict $32,500 [medical bills award]
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff alleged that he received an electrical shock when he touched the shelving of a deli-cooler in defendant's warehouse retail store. He alleged nerve damage in his hand and wrist and a large business loss. Our defense: the incident could not have happened. The cooler was insulated and plaintiff was grounded; plaintiff' claimed injury was not consistent with electric shock.Defense Verdict
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff slipped on vomit in main aisle way of warehouse retail store and alleged a torn meniscus. Our defense: lack of notice and open and obvious condition.Defense Verdict
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff claimed the nozzle on her gas pump shot a jet of gas in her face when she removed the nozzle from her tank after the pump had "clicked." She swallowed some gas and claimed chemical burns and an eye injury necessitating surgery. Our defense: the incident could not have happened unless plaintiff was depressing the pump trigger and no evidence of negligence or defect in the pump/nozzle.Defense Verdict
K. Robert Gonter, Jr.
A drunk driver lost control of his vehicle and struck defendant's swimming pool fence, injuring both plaintiffs who were standing next to the fence. Plaintiffs were a 31-year old fruit-packer and a 35-year old housewife. Defendant owned/operated the swimming pool premises. Plaintiffs argued that the swimming pool, which abutted two alleyways, only had a chain link fence around it and that the area was dangerous so defendant should have known that someone might lose control of a vehicle in the alleyway and hit the fence around the pool. The defense argued it was not reasonable to foresee that a drunk driver would drive his car into the fence surround the pool.Defense Verdict, 12-0
K. Robert Gonter, Jr.
Plaintiff was caretaking her mother's home while she was on vacation. Plaintiff was outside watering and was barefoot. She noticed smoke coming from the bushes so she watered the bushes and attempted to pick up what was thought to be a car mat. She actually touched the top of an electrical box and received either 120 or 240 volts of electricity through her body. Plaintiff alleged negligence for failure to keep the bushes clear and contended proximate cause of her touching the box was failure to keep the bushes clear. Plaintiff argued the electric company was either negligent or strictly liable for allowing electrical connection to become loose and cause a fire. Plaintiff also argued the electric company did not properly connect the connection when it was made 10 years earlier and the connection was not inspected. The defense argued no notice of any problems, proper connection, and inspection was not required. Plaintiff's settlement demand of $125,000 was raised to $175,000 at trial.Defense Verdict
K. Robert Gonter, Jr.
Plaintiff, a 25-year old optometrist assistant, was entering a swimming pool at an apartment complex when he slipped on the second step of the pool. Plaintiff fell, hitting his back on the edge of the pool. Plaintiff claimed there was algae on the steps; no adhesive strips on the steps; inadequate lighting; and no handrails. The defense argued no notice and no dangerous condition. It was an open and obvious. Alternatively, the accident never happened - the plaintiff filed the suit because he was being evicted.Defense Verdict

Back To Top

Vehicle Accident Liability

ATTORNEY

CASE SUMMARY

RESOLUTION RESULT

Peter J. Gates
Motorcycle operator made left turn after two lanes of traffic stopped and yielded. Motorcyclist was then struck by our client traveling through intersection in far right lane. Traumatic brain injury case. On appeal, the court resolved the right of way issue in favor of our client. See, 219 Cal.App.3d 218 (1990) Jury later rendered a defense verdict for our client.
Defense Verdict
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff, a bus passenger, claimed a cervical disc injury from a t-bone collision between a bus and a van. Alleged cervical surgery needed. Our defense: Fraud injury -- coach surveillance camera proved bio-mechanical defense - plaintiff's body did not move during collision.
Dismissal of our client (bus)
Richard A. Muench
Admitted liability, rear-end accident. Plaintiffs, a reputable businessman and his teenage daughter, claimed personal injuries and business loss. Our defense: plaintiffs could not have been injured in low impact accident; damages exaggerated and inflated.Verdict $32,500 [medical bills award]
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiffs, a family of four, alleged that the defendant made a left turn on a red light in front of plaintiffs' vehicle resulting in a significant impact. Plaintiffs alleged soft-tissue injuries. Our defense: plaintiff impeached on the color of the light, medical care fraudulent.Defense Verdict
Thomas A. Scutti
Plaintiff alleged defendant's negligence caused defendant to rear-end a third vehicle which then struck plaintiff's vehicle. Prior to the accident, plaintiff brought her vehicle to a stop. Defendant admitted being momentarily distracted by an accident on the other side of the road, apparently not noticing the traffic had stopped in front of defendant. All three vehicles were driven from the scene. The key issue was the nature and extent of the injuries alleged to have been sustained by plaintiff. Despite the minor nature of this accident, plaintiff claimed injuries to her neck, lower back, and headaches, with medical bills in excess of $12,000.00.

The defense position was that the plaintiff could not have injured her lower back in this type of low speed collision. Plaintiff had a 40-year history of low back complaints, arguing the accident exacerbated her low back condition.

We served an Offer to Compromise in the amount of $2,500.00 which was not accepted. The plaintiff in turn served an Offer to Compromise in the amount of $24,999.00, which was not accepted. At trial, the jury determined that the accident was not a cause of injury to plaintiff.
Defense Verdict
K. Robert Gonter, Jr.
Plaintiff was riding her bicycle when she collided with a vehicle as it emerged from an alleyway. At the time of the accident, the driver of the vehicle was within the course of scope of his employment with defendant/employer. Plaintiff sued the vehicle driver, the driver's employer, and the owner of the employer/company for negligence, as well as the owners of an appliance store claiming that its side wall prevented plaintiff from seeing the vehicle. The defendants argued that the driver inched out of the alleyway and because of the wall to his left, he didn't see plaintiff come off a sidewalk into the path of his vehicle. 26-year old Plaintiff claimed a torn meniscus, cuts and scrapes, and soft-tissue neck and back injuries. She underwent arthroscopic surgery of her knee and claimed $27,566 in past medicals and an unreported amount for loss of earnings as a housekeeper.
Defense Verdict for defendant employer and owner of company
K. Robert Gonter, Jr.
A physician and his two minor children were involved in an automobile accident with defendant. Defendant ran a red light and "T-boned" into plaintiff's vehicle. Plaintiff physician claimed an annular tear at L1-L2 and a 3-millimeter herniation at L1-L2. He underwent home exercise and physical therapy and claimed inability to work due to lower back pain and spasms. The children alleged facial, knew and neck lacerations in addition to nightmare. Plaintiff physician sought recovery of $5,243 in past medicals, $3 million in past and future loss of earnings and $12,000 property damage. Past medicals for the children were $1,022 and $222. Defendant admitted liability but disputed causation.
Defense Verdict, 12-0
K. Robert Gonter, Jr.
Plaintiffs (43-year old nurse/mother, 8-year old child, 11-year old child with Down Syndrome), claimed soft-tissue neck and back injuries in a rear-end vehicle accident. Defendant's vehicle sustained $4,220 in damage and defendant admitted liability. Plaintiffs received emergency room treatment on the day of the accident followed by four months of chiropractic care, claiming past medical expenses in total of $9,410.00. The jury did not believe four months of chiropractic care was necessary.
Jury awarded plaintiffs $237.00 total. Defendant was awarded costs of $8,898 per statute.
K. Robert Gonter, Jr.
Plaintiff, 34-year old sheriff's department employee, sustained bruising to arms, legs and knees when her vehicle was sideswiped by the defendant's car. Plaintiff's vehicle was totaled as it hit the center divider, which deployed the air bags. Plaintiff claimed past medical specials of $8,000 and future medical specials of $15,000 for knee surgery. The defendant, who admitted liability, argued that the plaintiff's injuries were not as severe as she claimed and that her treatment was unreasonable and unnecessary.
The jury returned an award of $2,930.
K. Robert Gonter, Jr.
The 54-year old plaintiff stopped at a four-way stop sign intersection. He and the defendant entered the intersection at the same time and collided. Plaintiff asserted the defendant had negligently failed to stop at the stop sign and pulled in front of plaintiff's truck. The defendant maintained that the plaintiff was not paying attention to traffic conditions (allegedly he was staring at a woman) and failed to notice that the defendant had pulled into the intersection. Plaintiff claimed soft-tissue injuries to his neck and back, with past medical specials of $4,000, past lost wages of $1,000 and property damage of $4,000.
The jury awarded $1,266 to the plaintiff after finding the defendant 60% negligent and the plaintiff 40% comparatively negligent.
K. Robert Gonter, Jr.
Plaintiff, a 57-year old truck driver, exited his bread truck parked in a parking lot in order to complete a delivery. As he walked in front of the bread truck, he was struck by defendant's car. Plaintiff argued defendant was negligent for not maintaining a proper lookout and was inattentive. Defendant contended that plaintiff was negligent for running in front of defendant's car.
Defense Verdict
K. Robert Gonter, Jr.
Defendant rear-ended plaintiff's vehicle, pushing them into the vehicle ahead of them. Plaintiff claimed defendant was traveling in excess of 25-30 mph at the time of the impact. Defendant argued his speed was 10 mph, plaintiffs were not injured, and medical bills and extensive medical treatment were unnecessary and unreasonable.
Defendant awarded costs of $29,000 against all three plaintiffs.
K. Robert Gonter, Jr.
A 40-year old waitress suffered neurological injuries, soft tissue injuries to the neck and back, with residual numbness in both arms, headaches, and carpal tunnel syndrome when her stopped vehicle was struck from the rear by the defendant's vehicle. The plaintiff contended that the defendant was negligent for failing to maintain a proper lookout or stop to avoid the collision. The defendant denied negligence and contended that the plaintiff's vehicle rolled back into his vehicle.
Defense Verdict
K. Robert Gonter, Jr.
A 21-year old plaintiff telephone repairman was riding southbound on his motorcycle. Defendant was traveling northbound and stopped in a controlled intersection preparing to make a left turn. Plaintiff entered the intersection and hit the right rear of defendant's left turning vehicle. Plaintiff claimed violation of right of way and defendant failed to yield before starting his left turn. Defendant contended plaintiff caused the accident by running the red light and hitting defendant's vehicle. Defendant also argued plaintiff's injuries were not as severe as claimed.
Defense Verdict
K. Robert Gonter, Jr.
Plaintiff, a 33-year old laborer on a cement contractor's crew, was struck by the chute on a cement mixer truck which was backing up. The chute pinned his leg against some 2x4 concrete forms, injuring his knee. An independent witness testified that as the truck was backing up, following the hand signals of the foreman, plaintiff tried to run around the back of the truck and was struck by the chute. Plaintiff alleged the mixer was stopped in position to pour; that plaintiff was adjusting the forms when the truck suddenly lurched backward without warning and struck plaintiff, pinning him against the forms. Defendant contended that plaintiff caused his own injury.
Defense Verdict
F. X. Sean O'Doherty
Plaintiff alleged that the Defendant made a left turn with his automobile, colliding with a motorcyclist. Defendant, in a statement to police, admitted he was lost while driving. Plaintiff, age 22, became a paraplegic with the mental capacity of a 7 yr old resulting from the head injury (no helmet). A motorcycle passenger died from head injury (no helmet). Plaintiff investigation alleged physical evidence at the scene showed defendant pulled from shoulder into path of plaintiff. Tire marks/pattern at scene allegedly matched defendant vehicle. Contact with defendant left rear portion of ¼ panel. Defendant accident investigation used presentation of "launch" angles and photos from the scene showing debris items to confirm defendant's contention that he was just traveling in the #2 lane attempting to make left turn at the intersection and did not see plaintiff approach from the rear. Defense found an "ear" witness through whom they recreated the sound of plaintiff motorcycle revving at high speed with gear changes to confirm high-speed approach. Exemplar motorcycle brought into court to demonstrate "noise" Specials: $240,000 current medical- Future life care plan $7,500,000 + present cash value. Original demand for policy of $100,000 rejected. Defense carrier then tried to re-offer the policy- rejected by plaintiff.
Defense Verdict
F. X. Sean O'Doherty
Plaintiff, a 32-year old postal worker, was operating a Yamaha 750 motorcycle. Plaintiff claimed he entered the freeway ahead of the defendant minivan. Plaintiff claimed slowing for traffic when defendant rear-ended the motorcycle. Plaintiff fell to the ground and was then run over by a tractor and trailer, resulting in a crush injury and degloving of both legs. At the scene, defendant stated that "busy talking" was going on within the van full of relatives. Defendant only remembers initially seeing plaintiff down on roadway. Defendant claimed she swerved to avoid and was then rear-ended herself. She claimed that her vehicle did not touch plaintiff motorcycle. Defense contended improper operator of motorcycle. Forensic evidence was presented on potential contact patterns of tire to van to disprove plaintiff's theory that plaintiff had to slow for quick stopping freeway traffic and lost control. Medicals $48,000 to date of trial - LOE 1 year off from postal job and need to re-train. Trucking company settled for $100,000. Defendant offered 7,500.00 before trial with 998 offer to compromise.
Defense Verdict - defense awarded $21,000 in costs
Douglas D. Guy
This lawsuit stemmed from an admitted liability rear end auto accident involving 54-year-old plaintiff and her 26-year-old daughter. The mother claimed an exacerbation to a preexisting degenerative disc condition in her neck and back. She received four epidural steroid injections in the lumbar spine in a hospital setting. Her global medical bills were over $30,000. The medical bills for the daughter were $2,500. The jury felt the impact was too minor to warrant the medical treatment received by both plaintiffs.
The jury awarded $7,423 to the mother and $330 to the daughter.
Kevin M. Raya
A 60 year old grandmother plaintiff (guardian for a 16-year old minor), filed a complaint for personal injuries against a 54-year old grandmother defendant alleging the defendant negligently or intentionally drove her vehicle into the minor. Plaintiff/minor claimed she received soft tissue injuries to her neck, mid-back, lower back, hip, and ankle. Plaintiff was diagnosed with cervical, thoracic and lumbar strains with intermittent parathesis to the right leg. Plaintiff sought damages in the form of hospital and medical expenses, general damages, loss of earning capacity and pre-judgment interest.

According to the police report, defendant had just dropped her granddaughter off at school and, as she was leaving the parking lot, saw plaintiff/minor fighting with her granddaughter. The defendant then turned her car around and was attempting to park in a parking space in front of the two fighting girls, at which time plaintiff/minor was bending over defendant's granddaughter in a motion of physical altercation. The police report stated: "Due to her excitement [defendant] accidentally drove onto the sidewalk and collided with the plaintiff, causing her to fall to the ground when struck from behind." Log notes contained in the file indicate that plaintiff's friends observed plaintiff "flying through the air" as a result of the impact with the defendant's vehicle.

Both liability and damages were in dispute. The defendant insisted that she never struck the plaintiff and plaintiff never fell to the ground. The plaintiff/minor alleged she was struck by the defendant's vehicle, causing her to fall and injure herself.

Plaintiff filed a CCP 998 Offer to Compromise in the amount of $6,500. We countered with a CCP 998 Offer in the amount of $2,500. If plaintiff was to be believed, a jury award of $5,000-6,000 was anticipated.
Defense Verdict
Kevin M. Raya
A 52-year old plaintiff, residing in Tijuana, Mexico, alleged personal injuries and property damage resulting from a two-car motor vehicle accident. Plaintiff alleged he was stopped at a red light and defendant rear-ended plaintiff. 38-year old defendant claimed to have seen plaintiff's vehicle to his right, at about mid-block of the intersection, when plaintiff sped up in front of defendant, pulled into defendant's lane, and slammed on his brakes. Defendant believed he was able to slow his vehicle from 20-25 mph to about 5 mph at the time of impact. The major issues of dispute centered on liability and damages. In arbitration, plaintiff was awarded $3,800.00 in medical specials and $1,800.00 in property damage.
Defense Verdict
Kevin M. Raya
Plaintiff claimed that as a result of a vehicle accident she suffered a stretch injury to her siatic nerve which required an excess of $20,000.00 in medical specials covering more than three years of medical treatment. Plaintiff also claimed she was unable to work as a result of the accident and therefore was claiming a loss of earnings for the same three year period in a dollar amount in excess of $80,000.00. At the close of evidence, plaintiff's counsel requested an award in excess of $200,000.00.

The jury came to the conclusion that plaintiff was not injured as a result of the subject accident.
Defense Verdict after one hour of deliberation
Kevin M. Raya
Plaintiff was driving her vehicle (with her two children, ages two and four) when she was rear-ended by the defendant's vehicle. Defendant disputed liability at the time of trial based upon the plaintiff's braking maneuvers. The plaintiff received medical treatment for three years, which included chiropractic treatment, treatment with a neurologist, and epideral injections. In the middle of trial, plaintiff was hospitalized for injuries she claims she sustained in the automobile accident.

At the time of trial, plaintiff had submitted medical billings of $12,000 and was claiming loss of earnings of $2,500. In pre-trial motions, plaintiff's medical specials were decreased to $9,500. The plaintiff claimed that as a result of the accident she suffered sprains and strains of the upper back as well as bilateral carpal tunnel syndrome.

Plaintiff presented the testimony of an orthopedist, a neurologist and a chiropractor. Plaintiff also presented the testimony of friends to support her claim for general damages, all were impeached on cross-examination. Defendant presented the testimony of a neurologist and accident deconstructionist.
Defense Verdict

The jury unanimously awarded a defense verdict based on causation for the injury. Defendant was awarded costs in excess of $6,000.

Back To Top

Medical Malpractice

Welcome to our new website. The section you are currently visiting is being updated, but the information is available off-line. If you would like this information to be emailed to you, please send a message to KGonter@gogglaw.com. Thank you.

Back To Top

Long Term Care Liability

Welcome to our new website. The section you are currently visiting is being updated, but the information is available off-line. If you would like this information to be emailed to you, please send a message to KGonter@gogglaw.com. Thank you.

Back To Top

Lemon Law / Warranty Defense

ATTORNEY

CASE SUMMARY

RESOLUTION RESULT

Douglas D. Guy
Plaintiff husband and wife claimed their motor home was unsafe to drive due to a serious pull to the left during braking condition, which was allegedly caused, in part, by the box coming loose from the chassis. Our client manufactured the body of the motor home that was welded to the chassis.

To settle the case, Plaintiff made a pretrial demand of $900,000.00 at the last mandatory settlement conference. At trial, Plaintiff asked the jury for $586,000.00 plus fees, which were in excess of $350,000.00.

We argued that the alleged imperfections had no impact on the drivability or structural integrity of the motor home. The jury deliberated for less than five minutes to award our client, the motor home manufacturer, a 12-0 defense verdict.
12-0 Defense Verdict
Matthew M. ProudfootPlaintiff alleged that his minivan overheated when towing a trailer within the weight limitations published in the manufacturer’s Owners Manual. Plaintiff alleged that the vehicle was a “lemon” because of this defect and the manufacturer and selling dealer misrepresented the towing capabilities of the vehicle.

Plaintiff also argued that an express warranty was created by language in a sales brochure about the minivan’s ability to handle “virtually any towing application.” Plaintiff sought repurchase of the vehicle and punitive damages as a result of the alleged misrepresentations.

During deposition, Plaintiff’s designated expert admitted that the minivan did not have a defect that caused it to overheat. Rather, in his opinion, the minivan was not properly equipped to tow the trailer and two wave-runners owned by Plaintiff.

Following Plaintiff’s opening statement at trial, the court granted non-suit in favor of our client, the vehicle manufacturer, on all 13 causes of action.
Non-suit awarded to vehicle manufacturer all 13 causes of action.
Matthew M. ProudfootPlaintiffs, a fire captain and a member of the U.S. Olympic woman’s softball team, alleged that the windshield wipers on their pickup truck were defective. Plaintiffs alleged that the wipers were intermittently inoperative, creating safety and use concerns, particularly when the truck was driven in inclement weather. At the defense inspection, the manufacturer’s expert confirmed a problem. The manufacturer offered to repurchase the vehicle. Plaintiffs rejected the offer and demanded civil penalties.

At trial, the evidence showed that Plaintiffs continued to drive the truck, including on ski trips. We argued that the continued use of the truck showed that there was no substantial impairment.

After less than one-hour of deliberations, the jury awarded a 9-3 defense verdict for our client, the vehicle manufacturer.
9-3 Defense Verdict
Douglas D. GuyTrial resulted in a buyback award for the plaintiff. We filed a motion for new trial claiming various items of misconduct and insufficient evidence. We also filed a JNOV, claiming the evidence was inadequate to prove the plaintiff's vehicle had a substantial impairment in use, value or safety.

The JNOV was granted.

The plaintiff’s truck had problems with assorted rattles and creaks for a long time. The conditions were worked on seven times, with repairs taking place on each visit. The plaintiff claimed to have lost confidence in her vehicle and that she did not get what she bargained for. We claimed the squeaks were unfortunate, but minor and always worked on for free under the warranty.

A highlight during the trial was a non-suit on plaintiff’s other five causes of actions, including B&P 17200, and a non-suit on the plaintiff’s claim for civil penalties.
JNOV for the Defense
Douglas D. GuyDuring cross-examination, plaintiff conceded that her only problem with the alleged "lemon" vehicle was a slight hiccup with the tachometer which lasted approximately two seconds and which would occur at varying intervals on an intermittent basis. She conceded she never had a breakdown, stall, or safety-related issue, and further conceded that the vehicle has always been driven since the day it was purchased up through trial. While other vehicles were available for plaintiff to drive, she always chose the subject vehicle for long trips. Plaintiff's expert's bias was exposed by pointing out that 99% of his income comes from plaintiff attorneys and that no manufacturer has ever once hired him to assist their defense.

This case included extensive witness training to prepare a company employee for her first trial representing her employer as to the decision-making involved in analyzing and ultimately denying the plaintiff's buyback request. Plaintiff's attorney waived his claim for civil penalties during his closing argument solely predicated on the employee's testimony. During cross-examination, the employee was unflappable in setting forth the vehicle manufacturer's defense theme that plaintiff's complaints did not seem overly problematic and that the company did not have a reasonable opportunity to repair.

Plaintiff's attorney conceded that the vehicle manufacturer had not willfully violated Song-Beverly. He conceded that the employee acted in good faith and did a comprehensive evaluation and analysis before the buyback request was denied. Plaintiff's attorney stated in opening that he did not feel he could prevail on proving a substantial impairment in use or safety. He indicated the case was all about a substantial impairment in value due to the extensive repair history. Defense argued there was no diminished value and read a portion of the plaintiff's cross-examination where she conceded she did not know if there was a decrease in value or not.
12-0 Defense Verdict returned in 15 minutes.

Defense expects to recover its cost bill and will not grant plaintiff's possible request to waive the costs in exchange for waiver of an appeal.
Thomas A. ScuttiThis litigation arose out of the lease of a vehicle by plaintiff. Plaintiff attempted to recover a repurchase or replacement, as well as a civil penalty.

Plaintiff had two main complaints: (1) A noise in the gear box when shifting gears and (2) a lurching/jerking sensation experienced when coming to stops and accelerating. Plaintiff claimed she noticed the noise from the gear box on the second day she had the vehicle and it still existed at time trial. There was never a time she shifted gears without hearing the noise. Regarding the transmission, plaintiff claimed the vehicle jerked when she was in drive anywhere from 0-40 miles per hour. She related one incident when she was on the freeway, at approximately 40 mp hour, and the jerking sensation almost caused her to strike the vehicle in front of her.

The vehicle was at various dealerships for repairs on four occasions. On the first occasion, the technician noted a normal engagement noise. The transmission was operating as designed, but a TCM flash update was performed. On the second occasion, the technician noted excessive play at the propeller shaft slip yoke and replaced the propeller shaft. On the third occasion, the service manager drove the vehicle 40 miles without being able to duplicate the complaint and determined no repair was necessary. Plaintiff criticized this repair visit since the vehicle apparently was never seen by a technician and the service manager had no training as a mechanic and never performed repairs on vehicles. On the fourth occasion, the vehicle was seen by a technician who did not detect any problem with the vehicle.

The key question was whether there has been impairment to the use, value or safety of the vehicle. Plaintiff has logged over 44,000 miles in two years. Despite her claim of near-misses, she has not had any accidents. As for value, while plaintiff argued a vehicle with a defect might be worth less, plaintiff never attempted to sell the vehicle or have it appraised.

During cross-examination, plaintiff essentially admitted that the purpose of leasing the vehicle (for her to use for work, school, and personal errands) was completely satisfied through the use of the vehicle during the past two years. Although she claims she was no longer driving the vehicle, she admitted that her Mother continued to use the vehicle on a daily basis. Plaintiff admitted that other than the "near miss," the vehicle always got her to and from her destinations, never breaking down, and never needing to be towed.

Plaintiff also admitted that after she went to the dealership each time, she was given a repair order which she read and understood. She admitted that she never told the service writer that the repair order did not reflect her concerns.

Plaintiff's mother also tried to establish how dangerous the vehicle was and her experience with the jerking sensation and the clunking noise. During cross-examination, she admitted that she used the vehicle for her real estate business, on nearly a daily basis, putting two to three clients a day in the vehicle. She also acknowledged that she had used the vehicle for all intended purposes anticipated when the vehicle was leased.

Plaintiff attempted to show a conspiracy regarding the inability of the vehicle manufacturer to fix the vehicle and instructing its dealerships to find the vehicle was operating normally.

The jury deliberated for approximately two hours, returning a 9-3 decision in favor of the defendant vehicle manufacturer on the issue of whether there was a non-conformity which substantially impaired the use, value, or safety of plaintiff's vehicle.
Defense Verdict
Thomas A. ScuttiThis litigation arose out of plaintiff's lease of a vehicle from defendant. Plaintiff first brought the vehicle to the dealership nine months after purchase, when the vehicle had 15,820 on the odometer. He complained that the engine cranked too long before starting. The fuel pump was bled down and replaced. He also complained that a brake warning system light stayed on. A switch was replaced. He also complained about the air conditioning not adjusting properly. The module was reprogrammed. Plaintiff returned one month later with 17,057 miles on the odometer, complaining of a grinding from the rear of the vehicle while driving. The dealership found scored carrier bearings and overhauled the rear differential, replaced the carrier and pinion bearings, installed a new pinion nut and seal, and set the pinion turning cork and ring gear back to factory specifications.

Despite only two repair attempts, plaintiff demanded a replacement of his vehicle and was referred to arbitration. The arbitration was resolved by an agreement to have the plaintiff's vehicle inspected on by technical advisor from the vehicle manufacturer. The vehicle had 28,573 miles. To address the clunking concern, the dealership removed the valve body and installed a new separator plate and check ball and adjusted the valve body. In response to complaints that the brakes squealed, the brake pads were removed and replaced. As for the difficulty starting the vehicle, the fuel pump and regulator were removed and replaced. According to documentation submitted by plaintiff to the Arbitration Board, he claims that these repairs did not remedy the concerns, but rather, all of the complaints returned immediately. Instead, he claimed that the problems were worse then ever.

Plaintiff claimed the vehicle had stalled on several occasions and was unreliable. Due to the starting problems, neither he nor his wife used the vehicle as they had intended.

In terms of value, Plaintiff claimed that according to the Kelly Blue Book, the vehicle in its current condition was worth less than if it was operating as expected. He also believed that if he were to sell the vehicle, he would have to disclose the repair history, which would decrease the value. Plaintiff admitted he has never tried to sell the vehicle or have it appraised. However, he claimed that because the engine was in poor working condition, the car would have no value. Plaintiff admitted he was upside down on his lease. He still claimed however that he intended to pay over $14,000 to keep the vehicle at the end of the five and a half year lease.

By the time of trial, the Jeep had 67,000 miles on it. Plaintiff admitted that the vehicle never broke down on him during the warranty period, and always got him to and from his destination. There were approximately twelve to fifteen significant inconsistencies by plaintiff during trial.

Within the first fifteen minutes of deliberation, the jury had two questions. The Judge used this opportunity to convince the parties to continue settlement discussions. While negotiating the settlement, the jury informed the Court that they had reached a verdict. The jury was then brought back in and advised that the case had settled. The jury notified us that their verdict was 9-3 on the question of no non-conformity.
Settlement during trial. Jury reported a 9-3 decision in favor of the defense.

Back To Top

Employment Litigation

ATTORNEY

CASE SUMMARY

RESOLUTION RESULT

Peter J. GatesSexual Harassment & Discrimination

A female employee alleged that her supervisor sexually harassed her and she was forced to quite after her complaints to management were allegedly not adequately resolved. After the first incident, the supervisor was placed on thirty-day administrative leave and returned to work, thereafter, for four more months until a second female employee complained of his sexually harassing behavior. As a result of the second complaint, the supervisor consulted an attorney, signed an agreement with the employer, accepted $10,000 and was terminated. The first complaining female employee filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against the terminated supervisor and the employer.
Defense verdict obtained at trial. Employee had demanded $750,000.
Peter J. Gates
Wrongful Termination

The manager of a homeowners' association was fired by the Board of Directors, to whom she reported, and was turned in to the District Attorney's office for embezzlement. After defeating the criminal case, the manager filed a lawsuit against the homeowners' association for wrongful termination and malicious prosecution. We received a defense verdict on behalf of the homeowners' association by proving embezzlement did, in fact, occur.
Defense Verdict
Peter J. Gates
Constructive Discharge

Seven nurses each alleged they were harassed and forced to resign due to an overbearing and perfectionist Director of Nurses Supervisor. Early employee interviews were conducted and a mediation was scheduled before a retired judge.
The plaintiffs' total demand was $750,000 and the case was settled for $110,000, after an all-day mediation.
Peter J. Gates
Age Discrimination

A 55-year old branch manager of a third party claims administration company alleged wrongful demotion and termination due to his age. The plaintiff alleged that all branch managers above the age of 50 were similarly demoted and then terminated. Preliminary discovery and investigation revealed that the company was involved in a general reduction in force; however, internal interviews revealed some evidence that plaintiff's age was a factor in his termination.
Plaintiff's original demand was $750,000 and the case settled in mediation for $160,000.
Peter J. Gates
Constructive Discharge

A disgruntled employee, age 53, worked for a third party claims administration company on a commission basis and alleged that younger, less experienced adjusters received more assignments than he did because the employer paid younger adjusters less commission.
Before a hearing on the employer's motion for summary judgment, the case settled for $25,000, far below the plaintiff's $250,000 demand.
K. Robert Gonter, Jr. Wrongful Termination in Violation of Public Policy

A female employee contacted the labor board advising them that she was not being paid overtime. The employer alleged that she was an independent contractor and was not entitled to overtime. Overtime was subsequently paid and three weeks after she contacted the labor board, she was terminated. As a result of her termination, she filed a lawsuit for wrongful termination in violation of public policy. A mediation was immediately set up prior to any discovery and the case was subsequently resolved after the mediation with very little discovery costs.
Case was resolved for less than the plaintiff's demand and was settled primarily for defense costs.
K. Robert Gonter, Jr.Wrongful Termination

A female employee alleged that she was terminated for failing to engage in a company investigation. The company had complaints that the employee was bad mouthing management, as well as engaging in conduct that was in violation of the employee handbook.

An investigation was set up and the employee was requested to answer questions regarding the investigation. She refused and was terminated. The employee filed a complaint for wrongful termination arising out of breach of implied contract of employment, breach of implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, discharge contrary to public policy and retaliation, and negligent infliction of emotional distress.
Based upon the information provided to the EEOC, the plaintiff decided not to pursue litigation.
K. Robert Gonter, Jr.Wrongful Termination

An employee was 65 years of age and had worked for the company for 20 years. Due to a down turn in the employees business, the employee was part of a widespread layoff. The plaintiff filed a complaint with the EEOC alleging age discrimination.
Defense Verdict

Back To Top

Security / Third Party Violent Crime

ATTORNEY

CASE SUMMARY

RESOLUTION RESULT

Richard A. MuenchShoot-out with AK-47 wielding gunman during an attempted robbery of an armored car at a warehouse retail store. One death and numerous catastrophic injuries. Represented store in 8 lawsuits involving 24 plaintiffs. Total exposure in excess of $10 Million. Prior armed robbery and shooting at store, but not involving armored transport service. Our defense: no duty owed to plaintiffs to prevent incident and no causation of injuries.
Summary Judgment granted for our client on all eight cases.
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff was attacked and severely beaten by another patron on the dance floor of a restaurant/tavern during a St. Patrick's Day celebration. Plaintiff alleged inadequate security for the event due to insufficient number and training of security guards. Our defense: plaintiff provoked the attack and the security provided was within the standard of the industry.Defense Verdict
Richard A. Muench
Elderly man stabbed inside discount retail store by gang member. Several prior stabbing incidents outside in common area parking lot, but none in the store. Our defense: no duty owed to plaintiffs to prevent incident and no causation of injuries.Summary Judgment granted for our client
Richard A. Muench
Multiple stabbings in parking lot outside a fast food restaurant in a strip mall. Plaintiffs', a family of four, suffered catastrophic internal injuries. Numerous incidents of prior crime in common area of strip mall. Our defense: no duty owed to plaintiffs to prevent incident and no causation of injuries.Summary Judgment granted for our client

Back To Top

Pharmacy Liability

Welcome to our new website. The section you are currently visiting is being updated, but the information is available off-line. If you would like this information to be emailed to you, please send a message to KGonter@gogglaw.com. Thank you.

Back To Top

Public Entity Defense

ATTORNEY

CASE SUMMARY

RESOLUTION RESULT

F. X. Sean O'DohertyDefendant municipal bus made a left turn in front of an approaching police vehicle. The bus operator claimed that he noticed the police vehicle before starting his turn and thought he had adequate distance to complete the turn. The bus operator stated that it appeared the police vehicle accelerated at a high rate of speed with no lights/siren. Defense found witnesses in a parking lot who had been "making out" and confirmed the sudden acceleration of the police unit. Plaintiff police officer, age 35, became disabled and was medically discharged from force. Medical bills over $68,000 for disc surgery. Future LOE claimed $300,000. Demand $650,000. Offer by 998 offer to compromise $75,000.Jury found 65% comparative negligence on the plaintiff. Jury believed the pre existing degenerative / causation issue. Gross verdict $75,000. Net $24,000. Work comp lien $42,000. Plaintiff net $0. Cost bill $28,00.00 by defendant granted. Plaintiff paid $15,000 of cost bill in settlement.
F. X. Sean O'Doherty
A municipal bus was proceeding in the #2 lane of two southbound lanes. The bus operator claimed a bicyclist darted out into the path of the bus. Witnesses claimed the bus pulled into the path of the bicyclist. The plaintiff is the 7yr old son of the deceased. Investigation found the main witness to be related to the deceased. Accident reconstruction used time/distance photographing to support the bus operator's version.
Defense Verdict
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff was allegedly struck by the bus door while boarding insured's bus. Our defense: plaintiff failed to comply with claims statute.Summary Judgment granted for insured
Richard A. Muench
Insurance subrogation case against insured driver for recovery of insurance benefits after five-car chain accident. Our defense: compulsory inter-company arbitration.Dismissal of insured
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff, a passenger on insured's bus, alleged injuries from an intersection collision. Our defense: the accident was caused by a vehicle which cut-off the bus.Settlement: $500
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff, the family of decedent, alleged mishandling of corpse by insured cemetery. Our defense: no public entity statutory liability and no evidence of negligence.Dismissal of insured
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff, a passenger on insured's bus, alleged torn knee cartilage when the bus collided with a vehicle while pulling from a stop.Settlement: $2,500
Richard A. Muench
Insurance subrogation case for a semi-truck damaged when insured's water pipe ruptured, causing massive sinkhole. Our defense: our investigation revealed that the rupture occurred shortly after a contractor was digging in the area. We brought the contractor into the case and the contractor settled the case.Dismissal of insured
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff alleged elbow fracture when his arm stuck in the door while boarding insured's bus. Our defense: plaintiff's injury claim was fraudulentDismissal of insured
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiffs, passengers on insured's bus, alleged soft tissue injuries from an accident with another vehicleDismissal of insured
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff, an elderly woman, fell on stairs in a theater after allegedly being abandoned by the usher. She suffered a fractured pelvis.Settlement:$7,500
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff's big-rig truck was damaged in a sink hole caused by a water line breakDismissal for insured water company
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff tripped and fell on a staircase at the insured's school. Our defense: fraud and no evidence of a dangerous condition on stairs.Summary Judgment Granted for insured
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff, a pedestrian, was struck by a golf cart driven by insured's employee. Our defense: plaintiff failed to timely present a government tort claim.Dismissalof insured
Richard A. Muench
Plaintiff was seriously injured when a chair on which she was seated collapsed during a bingo game at insured's school. Plaintiff had multi-level cervical fusion surgery with over $90,000 in bills.Settlement:$25,000

Back To Top

Trucking Industry Defense

Welcome to our new website. The section you are currently visiting is being updated, but the information is available off-line. If you would like this information to be emailed to you, please send a message to KGonter@gogglaw.com. Thank you.

Back To Top

Intellectual Property Rights

Welcome to our new website. The section you are currently visiting is being updated, but the information is available off-line. If you would like this information to be emailed to you, please send a message to KGonter@gogglaw.com. Thank you.

Back To Top

Aircraft Liability

ATTORNEY

CASE SUMMARY

RESOLUTION RESULT

F. X. Sean O'DohertyDefendant was Third Party Administrator assigned to investigate and retain crash data. Defendant came into possession of post crash instrumentation. It was later allegedly stolen by disgruntled employee. Plaintiffs alleged spoliation along with manufacturing defect in instrumentation against defendant. Decedent, recent low hour IFR pilot, attempted landing at Camarillo Airport in low minimums. Decedent made 3 attempts at an IFR approach before breaking off. Plaintiff then deviated from the missed approach pattern and went 180 degrees in the other direction. Defense uncovered prior deviations by the decedent from missed approached procedures. In those, he was attempting to "scud run" under the cloud cover to available landing. From FAA data and recreation of radar tracks, it appeared that decedent was trying a similar run to alternate airport which had improved conditions. Instruments were found to be in working order at time of impact.
Defendant manufacturer dismissed and spoliation issue resolved by case law that came down at time of case handling

Back To Top

Assault & Battery

ATTORNEY

CASE SUMMARY

RESOLUTION RESULT

Richard A. MuenchPlaintiff, a product demonstrator in defendant warehouse retail store, alleged that she was grabbed, spun and pushed to the ground by a manager during inappropriate disciplinary action. She alleged loss of job, personal injuries and medical bills. Our defense: the incident did not happen; plaintiff impeached with prior statements to employer.
Defense Verdict
F. X. Sean O'DohertyPlaintiff and Defendant were co-workers for design shop of Mattel. There had been "problems" between them in the past. After the death of a co-worker defendant allegedly found plaintiff pilfering the deceased co-workers work area, taking tools and other items. Defendant confronted plaintiff. Plaintiff alleges that defendant hit plaintiff repeatedly about the head and upper body. Defendant admits that he threw one punch-knocking plaintiff to the floor. Defense was that plaintiff took an "offensive" stance in front of defendant with "karate" "judo" type move. Defendant maintains that he simply beat plaintiff to the punch defensively. Plaintiff specials: Medical $22,000 and alleged future for closed head injury and hearing problems. Further alleged psychological injury from head injury requiring re-training. Plaintiff was a known braggart and practitioner of martial arts as testified to by other co-workers.
Defense Verdict

Back To Top

Municipal Transportation

ATTORNEY

CASE SUMMARY

RESOLUTION RESULT

F. X. Sean O'DohertyDefendant municipal bus made a left turn in front of an approaching police vehicle. The bus operator claimed that he noticed the police vehicle before starting his turn and thought he had adequate distance to complete the turn. The bus operator stated that it appeared the police vehicle accelerated at a high rate of speed with no lights/siren. Defense found witnesses in a parking lot who had been "making out" and confirmed the sudden acceleration of the police unit. Plaintiff police officer, age 35, became disabled and was medically discharged from force. Medical bills over $68,000 for disc surgery. Future LOE claimed $300,000. Demand $650,000. Offer by 998 offer to compromise $75,000.
Jury found 65% comparative negligence on the plaintiff. Jury believed the pre existing degenerative / causation issue. Gross verdict $75,000. Net $24,000. Work comp lien $42,000. Plaintiff net $0. Cost bill $28,00.00 by defendant granted. Plaintiff paid $15,000 of cost bill in settlement.
F. X. Sean O'DohertyA municipal bus was proceeding in the #2 lane of two southbound lanes. The bus operator claimed a bicyclist darted out into the path of the bus. Witnesses claimed the bus pulled into the path of the bicyclist. The plaintiff is the 7yr old son of the deceased. Investigation found the main witness to be related to the deceased. Accident reconstruction used time/distance photographing to support the bus operator's version.
Defense Verdict

Back To Top

Legal Malpractice

ATTORNEY

CASE SUMMARY

RESOLUTION RESULT

Thomas A. ScuttiA disgruntled client brought a legal malpractice action alleging negligence as follows: (1) Defendants dismissed client/plaintiff's personal injury claims (in underlying suit against her landlords) without client/plaintiff's permission, (2) Defendants delayed filing a motion to amend the complaint to reinstate client/plaintiff's personal injury claims; and (3) Defendants did not file a writ challenging the Trial Court's denial of client/plaintiff's motion to reinstate her claims.

The key issue in this case was whether the dismissal of Plaintiff's personal injury causes of action was proper. If the dismissal was proper, the issues regarding delay of the motion to reinstate and failure to file the writ are essentially moot. Plaintiff's claim that she did not authorize dismissal counters her sworn declarations signed under penalty of perjury. Plaintiff's authorization of the dismissals was established as a matter of law through her verified discovery responses in the underlying action. Plaintiff claims she did not actually read the responses prior to signing and returning the verifications to Defendants and therefore should not be bound by them. Plaintiff's verification under penalty of perjury that she read and understood her interrogatory responses estops her later claim that she did not read nor intend the contents of those responses.

After significant discovery and law and motion battles, the plaintiff dismissed her entire action for a waiver of costs at a settlement conference.
Thomas A. ScuttiA law firm represented a client in a complicated business litigation matter. A jury ruled in the client's favor, but the client was not happy with the amount awarded so he refused to pay the law firm. The firm brought an action to collect fees and the client cross-complained for malpractice.

In the underlying action, the jury awarded the client $2,500,000 but did not award pre-judgment interest. After the jury's verdict, the client demanded counsel file a motion for a new trial. The trial court agreed to vacate the damage award of the jury, but the decision was reversed on appeal and the original judgment was reinstated in favor of the client. The client alleged that the law firm committed malpractice in not requesting, after the jury verdict came in, that the trial court modify the judgment to award pre-judgment interest.

The client admitted: (1) he never asked the law firm to apply for pre-judgment interest, (2) the request for pre-judgment interest did not enter his mind until long after he changed representation of the case, (3) he thought the matter irrelevant given the grant of a new trial on damages, and (4) he did not think he was entitled to it.

Controlling legal authorities demonstrated that the client was not entitled to request pre-judgment interest from the trial court - this was a matter solely within the province of the jury, given that it was a jury trial and that prejudgment interest was not available for any period of time before the present valuation of damages.

Our motion for Summary Judgment was granted by the Federal Court.

Back To Top

Family Law

Welcome to our new website. The section you are currently visiting is being updated, but the information is available off-line. If you would like this information to be emailed to you, please send a message to KGonter@gogglaw.com. Thank you.

Back To Top

Business and Professions Code Section 17200

Welcome to our new website. The section you are currently visiting is being updated, but the information is available off-line. If you would like this information to be emailed to you, please send a message to KGonter@gogglaw.com. Thank you.

Back To Top

Fraud

ATTORNEY

CASE SUMMARY

RESOLUTION RESULT

Richard A. MuenchPlaintiff, a bus passenger, claimed a cervical disc injury from a t-bone collision between a bus and a van. Plaintiff alleged cervical surgery was needed. Our defense: Fraud injury -- coach surveillance camera proved bio-mechanical defense -- plaintiff's body did not move during collision.
Dismissal of our client (bus)

Back To Top

False Arrest / False Detention

ATTORNEY

CASE SUMMARY

RESOLUTION RESULT

Richard A. MuenchPlaintiff, a 62 year old woman, was mistakenly stopped and detained for suspected shoplifting of batteries. She had brought into the store an open battery pack from home. As soon as the mistake was discovered, apologies were made and she was released. She sued the warehouse retail store alleging emotional distress and punitive damages. Our defense: the detention was reasonable in time and scope - the merchant's privilege applied.
Defense Verdict
Richard A. MuenchPlaintiff, a doctor, was detained and arrested for shoplifting walkie-talkie radios. Plaintiff was acquitted at a criminal shoplifting trial. Plaintiff sued for false arrest, false imprisonment, malicious prosecution, and punitive damages. Demand was over $1 million. Our defense: Plaintiff stole the radios and the merchant's privilege applied.
Defense Verdict

Punitive damages stricken by pre-trial motion

Back To Top

Products Liability

ATTORNEY

CASE SUMMARY

RESOLUTION RESULT

K. Robert Gonter, Jr.35-year old cabinet maker was using a pneumatic nail gun when it blew up in his face. Plaintiff had been using the gun to repair his fence when the compressed air bottle ran out and he substituted a bottle of compressed oxygen. The gun functioned normally for over two hours and then it blew up. The cause was determined to be the combination of oxygen and lubricating oil in the gun. Defendant sold the gun to plaintiff. Plaintiff alleged that defendant failed to warn of the alleged known misuse of the nail gun with oxygen as a power source. Defense argued it could not foresee that anyone would use oxygen as a power source and had no knowledge that anyone had ever done so. Plaintiff sustained ruptured ear drum and loss of high frequency hearing in both ears; flying metal lacerated both eyes requiring several extensive repair surgeries; and retinal detachment and corneal transplant surgeries.Defense Verdict, 12-0
F. X. Sean O'Doherty
Plaintiff used defendant's wall mounted electric handryer in a restaurant restroom. Plaintiff was allegedly standing in water on the floor. Plaintiff activated the dryer and allegedly was shocked throwing plaintiff back into a wall and onto the floor, striking his head. Plaintiff's investigation showed improper placement of the dryer near potential water hazard. There was also a showing of improper grounding of the wiring. Plaintiff alleged improper warning on the dryer and the installation instructions against our defendant manufacturer. Plaintiff alleged closed head injury with deficits which caused a career change. Remainder of injuries were alleged burns from electrocution and soft tissue type injuries.Defendant manufacturer removed by summary judgment

Back To Top

Construction Defect

ATTORNEY

CASE SUMMARY

RESOLUTION RESULT

F. X. Sean O'DohertyDefendant, up-hill owner, had re-graded his property for landscaping. This changed the natural water run-off pattern onto the adjacent property owner and downhill landowner. Heavy rains caused the adjacent landowner's hillside to collapse and destroyed the downhill owner's property and house. The defendant did not construct diversion channels on his property with the re-grading. The adjacent landowner had some old culvert and "rip-rap" type diversions, which were in disrepair causing water to run down the slope rather than be diverted. Plaintiff alleged that defendant was negligence in the discharge of water from his property. Co-defendant alleged the same allegation in his cross-complaint. Defense argued the historical right to discharge waters to adjacent and downhill landowners. Defense also argued that adjacent landowner's hillside had been "filled" over the decades and was not properly compacted. Defense used old "stereo-scopic" pair imaging from flyover of the area from 1920 to present. Those photos showed and original "canyon" that over the years had been filled with trash. Defense also argued that plaintiff had greatly exaggerated the need for repairs using pre-slide photos with upgraded photos.Defense Verdict

Back To Top

Insurance Coverage

Welcome to our new website. The section you are currently visiting is being updated, but the information is available off-line. If you would like this information to be emailed to you, please send a message to KGonter@gogglaw.com. Thank you.

Back To Top

Insurance Bad Faith

Welcome to our new website. The section you are currently visiting is being updated, but the information is available off-line. If you would like this information to be emailed to you, please send a message to KGonter@gogglaw.com. Thank you.

Back To Top

Private Bus Fleet Liability

ATTORNEY

CASE SUMMARY

RESOLUTION RESULT

F. X. Sean O'DohertyPrivate charter bus deadheading to another terminal. The right rear tag axle threw the entire tread in one piece off the tire into the roadway. Plaintiff following the bus ran over the tread causing the vehicle to run off the roadway onto the shoulder striking the guardrail. Plaintiff had just undergone a laminectomy 2 months before this accident. The undercarriage of the vehicle was extensively damaged. Plaintiff alleged second disuption of disc and aggravation of prior surgery. Plaintiff had started a new printing business that he claimed had to be abandoned. Medical specials: $20,000 at time of trial LOE: $100,000 past and alleged $300,000 future. Defense hinged on the maintenance program by the bus operator to show that regular inspections had taken place within industry standards. The tire in question was on a "lease" program and not the property of the bus company. Plaintiff passenger had pulled the tread to the side of the road and threw it down an embankment. The tread was never examined for defect. The tire carcass was taken into possession by the tire owner, with no inspection. Defense also argued the reasonableness of the medical issues both on billing and causation. Plaintiff demand to jury $1,000,000.Defense - defendant awarded $18,000 in costs after plaintiff failure to accept 998 offer to compromise of $10,000 before trial.
F. X. Sean O'DohertyDefendant, private coach operator, failed to notice stopped traffic. The rear end accident resulted in totaling plaintiff's VW. The trunk was pushed into the rear compartment of the vehicle. Plaintiff was a county social worker and claimed he was totally disabled as result of the accident. Plaintiff claimed $31,000 in medical billings for alleged disc injury. Future surgery alleged. LOE projected $200,000 with vocational rehab/change of job.
The case was originally arbitrated by another defense firm with a result of $625,000 in favor of the plaintiff. We reduced that to a $28,000 verdict for plaintiff.

Back To Top

Director & Officer Liability

Welcome to our new website. The section you are currently visiting is being updated, but the information is available off-line. If you would like this information to be emailed to you, please send a message to KGonter@gogglaw.com. Thank you.

Back To Top

Our Firm Locations

Gates, O'Doherty, Gonter & Guy LLP

ORANGE COUNTY OFFICE

Office Managing Partner:
K. Robert Gonter, Jr.
E-mail the Firm | Irvine Law Office

Gates, O'Doherty, Gonter & Guy, L.L.P
38 Discovery, Suite 200
Irvine, CA 92618

Phone: 949-753-0255
Fax: 949-753-0265

San Diego Office

Office Managing Partner:
Douglas D. Guy
E-mail the Firm | San Diego Law Office

Gates, O'Doherty, Gonter & Guy, L.L.P
15373 Innovation Drive, Suite 170
San Diego, CA 92128

Phone: 858-676-8600
Fax: 858-676-8601

Los Angeles office

Office Managing Partner:
Matthew M. Proudfoot
E-mail the Firm | Map and Directions

355 S. Grand Ave, Suite 2450
Los Angeles, CA 90017
Phone: 949-753-0255
Fax: 949-753-0265

Ontario Office

Office Managing Partner:
Sean O'Doherty
E-mail the Firm | Ontario Law Office

Gates, O'Doherty, Gonter & Guy, L.L.P
3350 Shelby St., Suite 200
Ontario, CA 91764

Phone: 949-753-0255
Fax: 949-753-0265