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...

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...

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

Attorneys: Rhianna S. Hughes, Rod Sorensen

Apr 10

Federal Court Grants Judgment in ERISA Case in Favor of Our Clients Before Trial Begins

In an employee benefits case brought in federal court under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) against our client, a national retailer, and its group health insurance plan for denial of an expensive surgery as not medically necessary, the court granted judgment in favor of our clients at the time of trial.  

The court ordered trial briefs from both parties in advance of trial, which plaintiff provided.  Payne & Fears went a step further and in conjunction with our trial brief, moved for judgment on partial findings pursuant to Federal Rule of...

Practice areas: Labor and Employment Litigation, ERISA Litigation

Attorneys: Andrew K. Haeffele, Eric C. Sohlgren

Feb 14

P&F Prevails on Summary Judgment in a Race Discrimination / Retaliation Case

Payne & Fears LLP was recently retained as trial counsel in a hotly contested race discrimination and retaliation case. At mediation, Plaintiff was demanding $6 million to settle and prior counsel had been unable to resolve the case. The trial team of Dan Fears, Jeff Brown, Ray Boggess and Sean O'Brien quickly transitioned into the case and assisted prior counsel in preparing a motion for summary judgment.  

Following oral argument by Dan Fears, the Court issued a 15-page decision granting total summary judgment as to all 10 claims and all defendants.  Payne...

Practice areas: Labor and Employment Litigation

Attorneys: Daniel F. Fears , Jeffrey K. Brown , Ray E. Boggess, Sean A. O’Brien

2017

Unlicensed Contractor Agrees to Drop Million Dollar Suit Against SpaceX

Payne & Fears LLP recently obtained a victory in favor of their client, SpaceX, before the California Court of Appeal which upheld the dismissal of certain claims against SpaceX by an unlicensed contractor seeking to collect on what it claimed were over $1 million in unpaid invoices. 

In Phoenix Mechanical Pipeline, Inc. v. Space Exploration Technologies Corp., No. B269186 (Cal. Ct. App. June 13, 2017), a published opinion, the Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District ruled that plaintiff’s claims for contracting services were barred by ...

Practice areas: Business Litigation, Appellate Law (Business)

Attorneys: Benjamin A. Nix, Erik M. Andersen, Robert Tadashi Matsuishi, Scott O. Luskin

2017

Payne & Fears LLP Granted Final Approval of $11.75 Million Class Settlement in TCPA Litigation

Payne & Fears LLP secured a victory on behalf of client Craftwood Lumber Company in a Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) litigation in Illinois state court. The Lake County Circuit Court granted final approval of the $11.75 million class settlement that the Firm secured for recipients of faxes announcing price changes for Hardware Resources products. The court noted that none of the 26,000 class members had objected to the settlement, and only nine class members had opted out.

Practice areas: Business Litigation

Attorneys: C. Darryl Cordero, Leilani L. Jones, Matthew K. Brown, Philip K. Lem, Scott O. Luskin

2017

Final Approval of $25M TCPA Lawsuit Granted

Payne & Fears LLP received a major victory in the RehabCare Group Telephone Consumer Protection Act ("TCPA") litigation in the Eastern District of California.

Judge Dale A. Drozd released his decision granting final approval of the $25 million class settlement the Firm had obtained for recipients of "Polaris Group" junk faxes. In its 24-page decision, the court concluded that the settlement easily qualified as "fair, reasonable, and adequate."

Over the course of several years, long-term care facilities across the country had been blanketed with faxes promoting Polaris...

Practice areas: Business Litigation

Attorneys: C. Darryl Cordero, Leilani L. Jones, Matthew K. Brown, Philip K. Lem, Scott O. Luskin

2017

Statewide PAGA Claim Eliminated

Payne & Fears obtained an order striking the representative PAGA claims from a statewide wage-and-hour action, thus reducing size of the case from over 250,000 members to a mere handful of individual claims.

Five former employees sued Payne & Fears’ client, a large multistate retailer, for meal and rest period violations and related causes of action.  Plaintiffs sought to certify a class of over 250,000 current and former employees, and also sought to maintain claims for PAGA penalties on behalf of the same population.  The...

Practice areas: Labor and Employment Litigation, Wage and Hour Litigation, Class Action Defense

Attorneys: James L. Payne, Jeffrey K. Brown , Ray E. Boggess

2017

Court Denies De Novo Review in Favor of Request for Abuse of Discretion Standard

In a case brought in federal court under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) against our client, a national retailer, and its group health insurance plan for denial of an expensive surgery as not medically necessary, the court ordered briefing on the appropriate standard of court review. In ERISA cases, the standard of review is very important to determine whether the court will defer to the plan’s determination. Plaintiff filed a motion arguing for de novo review based on a California Insurance Code section he claimed negated the plan’s language requiring abuse of...

Practice areas: Labor and Employment Litigation, ERISA Litigation

Attorneys: Andrew K. Haeffele, Eric C. Sohlgren

2017

Individual Releases Secured Low Settlement

We were retained as lead counsel in addition to insurance panel counsel to defend two related wage and hour class actions brought against an Orange County car wash owner.  We mounted an aggressive strategy to reduce potential damages, including an audit of payroll and timekeeping records, individual interviews with over 60 putative class members to obtain declarations and releases in exchange for individual settlement payments, and training for all managers and supervisors.  After sharing some information with plaintiff’s counsel, we were able to settle the case at mediation with...

Practice areas: Labor and Employment Litigation, Wage and Hour Litigation, Class Action Defense, Employment Practices Counseling

Attorneys: Eric C. Sohlgren