• Recent Results (April 2010)

    Posted April 24, 2010 By in Recent Results With | No Comments

    The results mentioned are representative and do not constitute a guarantee, warranty, or prediction regarding the outcome of your legal matter.

    CONSTRUCTION/FACILITIES

    1. A large county Department of Education had limited funds to build a community school and could not get bids to come in on budget. The county reached out for assistance and advice from Bergman Dacey Goldsmith, who devised a plan for the county, bringing in an experienced construction manager and then selecting a general contractor using a Lease-Leaseback delivery method combined with a competitive bidding component. The process resulted in the final construction contract coming in $2.5 million under budget. The school is now under construction, on schedule, and within budget.

    2. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented a corporation that specializes in providing construction and acquisition/rehabilitation loans in order to create and improve single and multi-unit residences in affordable neighborhoods, in a lawsuit filed by a general contractor on a private construction project financed by the corporation. Among other claims, the contractor sought to preclude the client from foreclosing on a trust deed. After the client had a temporary restraining order entered against it, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith stepped in to successfully oppose the general contractor’s application for preliminary injunction and persuaded the general contractor to dismiss its lawsuit before any responsive pleading was due.

    3. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith was retained by a large school district to defend against a seven-figure claim by a general contractor. Through a tactful and deliberate litigation approach, and before even filing an answer to the complaint, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith negotiated a dismissal of all of the general contractor’s causes of action in exchange for a settlement amounting to a fraction of the amounts sought against the school district.

    4. In a suit filed against a school district client, the contractor sought several hundred thousand dollars for alleged unpaid work. The school district contended that the contractor had overstated the amount of work done and performed work after the operative contract had expired. The district nevertheless made a good-faith six figure offer to settle. The contractor rejected the settlement and demanded full payment of his claim. Bergman and Dacey, Inc. filed a demurrer in response to the contractor’s complaint. The court sustained the demurrer without leave to amend and dismissed the contractor’s lawsuit with prejudice. Thus, after the school district made a reasonable offer to settle and was confronted with an overreaching contractor, Bergman and Dacey, Inc. prevailed in court, with the result being that the school district client was extricated from the case without having to pay.

    5. Public entities were disputing jurisdiction over a public works project, with one of the public entities attempting to stop construction by the other public entity. The public entity constructing the project reached out to Bergman Dacey Goldsmith for representation and advice regarding its rights and remedies on the jurisdictional question and the refusal of the other public entity to issue a permit. After Bergman Dacey Goldsmith wrote a cease and desist letter outlining how the other public entity was unjustly interfering with the project, the permit was issued. Construction is now nearing a successful completion.

    6. In a complex construction litigation matter, a renowned construction management firm filed a motion for summary adjudication against Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s public entity client arguing, among other things, that its contract with the public entity owner shielded it from responsibility for the poor work of the project contractors. Through effective written advocacy, followed by lengthy oral argument, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith protected all of its public entity client’s rights and remedies against the construction management firm. The public entity prevailed as the court denied the motion for summary adjudication in its entirety.

    7. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith successfully assisted an Orange County public school district in creating a set of Lease-Leaseback Construction Agreements under California Education Code § 17406, and in having the Agreements validated by the appropriate court under California Code of Civil Procedure § 860 et seq. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith has now assisted in the creation and management of 11 such sets of Lease-Leaseback Construction Agreements for Los Angeles and Orange County public school districts and departments of education over the last 18 months.

    EMPLOYMENT LITIGATION

    1. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented a large school district in an administrative proceeding it initiated to terminate one of its certificated employees for, among other things, unprofessional conduct. By using state of the art forensic technology, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith, was able to produce extensive electronic evidence of the employee’s wrongful acts. This evidence, as well as pressure imposed by Bergman Dacey Goldsmith during a mandated settlement conference, led to the resignation of the employee in exchange for a de minimis settlement payment.

    2. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented an international corporation in its defense of various wage and hour claims brought by a former sales agent. By removing the case to Federal Court, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith took the case on the offensive and slowly deconstructed each of the plaintiff’s various allegations. By consistently pushing plaintiff on the weaknesses of the case, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith was able to settle the matter for a fraction of the monies originally sought. Furthermore, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith provided guidance to the corporation to revise its business model to clarify its commission practices so that future litigation could be minimized.

    3. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith successfully represented on appeal a large school district in a lawsuit involving claims that its police department engaged in racial discrimination and retaliation. Going up against an aggressive and well-known plaintiff’s attorney, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith successfully obtained summary judgment in favor of the school district by demonstrating to the trial court via carefully tailored discovery that: (1) the plaintiff had no evidence that any decision-maker had or acted with a discriminatory or retaliatory animus, (2) the school district’s promotional decisions were based on legitimate reasons, and (3) the plaintiff’s efforts to rely on “other” claims of purported racial discrimination failed to support his claim. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith then presented a cogent legal argument on appeal to uphold the summary judgment on all grounds.

    BUSINESS LITIGATION

    1. Less than three weeks before trial, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith took over the defense of a non-profit housing corporation and several of its affiliates, all of which had signed a written indemnity agreement with a title insurance company. The title company had been sued by a third party for alleged violations of the California Enforcement of Judgments Law and responded by suing our clients on the indemnity agreement. We immediately succeeded in getting the indemnity claim severed from the underlying claim and then assisted the title company in securing a dismissal of the claim against it as a matter of law on the first day of trial. At that point, the title company had no viable claims against our clients and it agreed to a no-money settlement in exchange for a waiver of costs and mutual releases.

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