Payne & Fears LLP offers a full range of business and litigation services to its clients in three primary practice groups: Labor and Employment, Business Litigation, and Insurance Coverage. Across these practice areas, we represent all types of clients, from multi-national corporations to emerging tech startups to individual insurance policyholders.

Practice Areas

 

Testimonials

  • Payne & Fears LLP has represented me and my company for many years. It is an excellent law firm with the highest standards. I have worked with hundreds of attorneys in my career. I get results with Payne & Fears LLP.

    - Small Business Owner
  • The attorneys at Payne & Fears have the unique ability to size up complex matters and provide well-reasoned solutions. Their knowledge of the law and depth of experience, coupled with the responsive and personal service they provide, all contribute to a strong and valued relationship with our organization.

    - Vice-President of Labor, Publically Traded Silicon Valley Technology Company
  • I have had nothing but great experiences with Payne & Fears. The attorneys are knowledgeable and efficient.

    - Counsel, Large Regional Financial Institution
  • Your support at Payne and Fears is top rate and it is such a pleasure to work with someone who understands business and offers a conservative, yet aggressive approach – not very easy but something that you seem to demonstrate well!  You are always my first choice of outside counsel.

    - Senior Vice President, Human Resources, International Consumer Goods Company
  • With over 35 years of in-house counsel and executive operations experience, I have worked with many law firms throughout the U.S. Payne & Fears is at the top of my list of law firms for handling commercial litigation and employment law matters on the West Coast based upon the highest level of competence, responsiveness and cost-effectiveness that has been delivered. They also stand apart with the highest ethical standards and, might I add, a not often seen virtue of humility among their partners.

    - Executive Vice President & General Counsel, National Highway Equipment Dealer and Distributor
  • I hire Payne & Fears LLP because of certainty--certainty in my receipt of value, in its strategic approach to problem solving, in its integrity of billing, in its candor when evaluating my cases, in its creativity while searching for an economical and fair resolution and in its attorneys’ tenacity throughout the ensuing battle. In a world of unknowns, I value constancy in characteristics that matter most. Payne & Fears LLP delivers that constancy.

    - Chief Litigation Officer, Fortune 500 Company

Successes

Aug 06

Payne & Fears LLP Recovers Almost $1,000,000 in Insurance Proceeds for a Fortune 500 Homebuilder

Irvine office partner Scott S. Thomas and Las Vegas partner Sarah J. Odia recently recovered almost $1,000,000 in insurance proceeds for a Fortune 500 homebuilder. Several liability insurers that insured the homebuilder as an additional-insured under policies issued to the homebuilder’s subcontractors refused to defend the homebuilder in two multi-plaintiff construction defect actions in Clark County, Nevada. One of the insurers filed a motion to dismiss the homebuilder’s insurance recovery complaints, citing the “ongoing operations” language in its additional insured endorsements as a defense to coverage.

The Court in both actions denied the insurer’s motion, holding that the insurer’s “ongoing operations” endorsement obligates the insurer to defend its additional insured so long as there is a potential for an award of damages for property damage “arising out of” the subcontractor’s operations. See Centex Homes v. Zurich American Ins. Co., 2017 WL 4349016 (D. Nev. Sept. 2017); Centex Homes v. Everest Nat’l Ins. Co., 2017 WL 4349017 (D. Nev. Sept. 2017). Payne & Fears recovered 100% of the homebuilder’s defense costs in the underlying action and 100% of Payne & Fears’ costs incurred pursuing the recovery actions.

Practice areas: Insurance Coverage

Attorneys: Sarah J. Odia, Scott S. Thomas

Apr 24

Payne & Fears Secures Preliminary Injunction Against Former E*TRADE Employee

Payne & Fears obtained a victory in favor of client E*TRADE in an action brought against a former employee.

In the case E*TRADE Financial Corporation v.  Eaton, 305 F. Supp. 3d 1029 (D. Ariz. 2018), the former employee testified that he contacted his former employer’s clients, by telephone, to announce his new position and provide his new contact information. The former employee claimed that he was required, by certain rules applicable to certified financial planners, to provide his new contact information to the clients he previously serviced. The former employee admitted, however, that if he was unable to speak with a client in “real-time,” he did not send that client an e-mail, letter, flyer, or some other written communication to provide his new contact information.

The court found that by insisting on conveying his switching firms only in a live and real-time conversation and never following up to provide his new contact information to those former clients who did not assent to a telephone call, “[the former employee’s] primary purpose was to solicit their business to him and away from [his former employer].”  This, the court held, constituted improper solicitation in violation of the agreement between the former employee and employer.

Rod Sorensen and Rhianna Hughes defended the case on behalf of E*TRADE.  This case expanded the definition of client solicitation under Arizona law.  Now, not only is the content of the former employee’s communications relevant, but so is the manner in which the communication occurs.

Practice areas: Labor and Employment Litigation, Trade Secret and Unfair Business Practices

Attorneys: Rhianna S. Hughes, Rod Sorensen