FEDERAL COURT CASES

 

Six-figure settlement with power saw owner for policy limits; five-day jury trial against power saw manufacturer forproducts liability, negligent design defect, and failure to warn. We represented plaintiff, who severely injured his right hand while working with a power saw at the home of the saw’s owner. Unknown to plaintiff, the saw had a defective blade guard. We settled with the saw’s owner for policy limits before filing an action against the saw’s manufacturer and seller for products liability, negligent design defect, and failure to warn. Richard Sax knew he had an uphill battle, but nevertheless took the matter through a five-day jury trial in federal court. The jury deliberated for two days before returning a defense verdict.

Jury trial for violations of Civil Rights against the City of Oakland Police Department. This was one of the very first cases brought against some rogue Oakland Police Department officers referred to as “Midnight Riders.” The police officers had physically beaten and planted false evidence on criminal suspects.

Products liability jury trial against a major retailer and the manufacturer of a hazardous and cheaply-made deep fryer aimed at a low-income market. We represented plaintiff, who was severely burned by a deep fryer that, unknown to him, contained boiling hot oil. The deep fryer had limited stability, no shut-off switch, no warning light, and other hazards. At the conclusion of the trial, Sax was complimented by the Hon. Bernard Zimmerman, who has presided over hundreds of jury trials with some of the best trial lawyers. Judge Zimmerman said, “This was a very professional job by the attorneys. They were respectful to the court and the attorneys cooperated.” Defense counsel said, “Good job, Richard.”

Favorable six-figure settlement in an ERISA case against CNA after four years of litigation and an award of civil penalties and attorney fees. A major insurance company refused to honor a disability policy as our client’s health declined markedly, forcing us to file an administrative appeal and a lawsuit in federal court. After our client’s death, his sister carried on in his place. We won an award of civil penalties and attorney fees.

$125,000.00 settlement in an ERISA case against UNUM. A major insurance company refused to honor a disability policy, forcing us to file an administrative appeal and a lawsuit, even though our client, a high-tech executive, had become disabled after a heart attack. The case settled in mediation in federal court.

Favorable six-figure settlement in an ERISA case against Zurich American Insurance Company. Our client, a formerly high-performing business executive, became demonstratively disabled. However, a major insurance company refused to honor his disability policy. The case settled after an administrative appeal, lawsuit, and mediation.

Successfully prosecuted a Civil Rights Action against Sonoma County. We successfully prosecuted a Civil Rights action on behalf of the widow of a prisoner who died while incarcerated in the Sonoma County jail. The case settled after mediation.

Prosecuted a case against the Tiburon Police Department that resulted in a reorganization of the police department. Our client was a young black man who was abruptly and wrongfully arrested by a police SWAT team while sleeping in his mother’s apartment. Our client was the victim of mistaken identity and over-zealous law enforcement. He was accused of robbery, even though he was in a coffee shop in another location with over twenty fellow high school students at the time the robbery was alleged to have taken place.