• Recent Results (August 2012)

    Posted August 8, 2012 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.

    BUSINESS LITIGATION

    1. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented a successful California corporation with multiple franchises against both federal and state claims of statutory violations stemming from prohibitions on facsimile solicitations. Upon evaluating the very limited potential damages that could be claimed, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith aggressively began settlement negotiations and took all necessary steps to avoid litigation being filed against the corporate client. In a period of days, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith negotiated a very modest resolution before the claimant ever filed his lawsuit, thereby ensuring the corporation could focus on its business and not be distracted by a costly legal action. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented this same client against a similar claim in which Bergman Dacey Goldsmith again negotiated a de minimis settlement before having to file a single document with the court.
    2. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented an international corporation in its defense of various business tort and breach of contract claims brought by an equipment buyer who purchased allegedly defective equipment from a former sales agent for the corporation (the equipment was actually from another co-defendant). When early investigation revealed that the sales agent was no longer affiliated with the corporation at the time of the purchase, but that the corporation had not cut all administrative ties thereby exposing itself to potential liability, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith opened settlement negotiations with the equipment buyer and through diligent efforts was able to resolve the matter for a fraction of the monies originally sought by the equipment buyers and before incurring significant litigation expense. Furthermore, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith ensured that the Court approved the good faith settlement pursuant to statute to avoid any future claim for contribution from the other co-defendant who did not settle out of the case, thereby achieving finality for the corporation. Finally, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith provided guidance to the corporate client to revise its business model to clarify its documentation practices so that future litigation could be minimized.
    3. Following a successful result in Los Angeles County wherein Bergman Dacey Goldsmith obtained temporary restraining order relief for its client, a worldwide financial services firm, against a former branch manager who was accused of having misappropriated confidential and trade secret information, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith was again retained by the same firm to obtain similar relief against a financial analyst who was accused of stealing proprietary/trade secret information in Northern California in favor of a competitor. Within less than 48 hours after being retained, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s attorneys marshaled the evidence, interviewed the key witnesses, drafted and filed the necessary pleading, and obtained a hearing date to present its application for a temporary restraining order and order to show cause re preliminary injunction. After presenting the application and the evidence to the court, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s attorneys were successful yet again in obtaining a victory in Northern California as the court decided in our client’s favor and issued a temporary restraining order against the former employee, enjoining the former employee from using or exploiting the client’s confidential, proprietary, and/or trade secret information at his new place of employment and directing and compelling the former employee to return all documents containing any confidential, proprietary, and/or trade secret information that he took with him to his new place of employment.
    4. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented a company that provides services to commercial and residential real estate industries nationally in obtaining immediate injunctive relief against a former officer of that company. The former officer was accused of misappropriating company confidential and proprietary information in favor of himself and a new company that he formed, through which he was providing consulting and expert witness services for litigation purposes. As the allegations read, in providing those expert and consulting services to his clients, the former officer was providing confidential, proprietary, and trade secret information of Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s client to not only his clients but also the court and other parties in the lawsuit. In just a few days, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s attorneys prepared and filed a complaint and an ex parte application seeking temporary restraining order (“TRO”) relief to enjoin the former officer’s conduct. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith convinced the court to grant its request for a TRO and, later, to also issue a preliminary injunction in favor of Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s client. Finally, through tactful negotiation sessions with counsel for the former officer, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith was able to secure a favorable settlement for its client, through which a stipulated settlement order was entered by the court and by which the defendants became bound to abide by the terms of a stipulated permanent injunction order favoring its client.

    TRANSACTIONAL MATTERS

    In a non-litigation matter, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith advised the seller of a major metal fabrication company on how to structure and avoid environmental liabilities associated with the sale of the company. Also, when a non-profit corporation that specializes in real estate loans for public interest projects discovered that the borrower was diverting funds away from the project, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith was brought in to determine how best to protect the rights of the non-profit corporation. After intense negotiations, the borrower realized that it was best to execute a deed in lieu of foreclosure in favor of the lender.

    CONSTRUCTION AND PUBLIC WORKS LITIGATION

    1. A private client retained Bergman Dacey Goldsmith to provide her with legal counsel for a high-end construction/remodeling project that had left the client’s project in shambles. The general contractor filed suit against Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s client for breach of contract and foreclosure of its mechanic’s lien for alleged unpaid invoices it claimed were due and owing pursuant to its work on the project. With an experienced construction consultant on Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s side, our attorneys performed an in-depth analysis of the as-built conditions, the project’s contract, and the plans/specification documents. It was clear the general contractor had performed deficient and unacceptable work. Therefore, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith took an aggressive stance and formulated a demand as to work that needed to be corrected and back-charged against the general contractor. Heated litigation ensued. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s seasoned construction attorneys negotiated a favorable “walk away” settlement after a full-day mediation, saving substantial litigation expense.
    2. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented a Southern California school district in litigation involving an engineering firm’s claims against the district for unpaid invoices pursuant to multiple public works contracts. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s attorneys, along with the district’s representatives, engaged in a comprehensive forensic analysis of the engineering firm’s claims and concluded that unsubstantiated invoices were submitted to the district for payment for multiple projects dating back many years. The engineering firm was seeking hundreds of thousands of dollars from the district. These claims, along with the district’s claims for damages, were addressed during informal settlement meetings and mediation proceedings. A favorable settlement was achieved for the district at a fraction of the engineering firm’s original claims.

    TORT LITIGATION

    Bergman Dacey Goldsmith filed and litigated an action on behalf of a retired professional golfer related to injuries he sustained in an accident. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith quickly gathered all the pertinent documents to support the damages suffered by its client and presented them in a compelling manner to the other side. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s direct and open approach illustrated to the other side the strength of its claims and its commitment to take this matter to trial. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith resolved the matter for the insurance policy limit months before trial was scheduled to commence.

    LABOR AND EMPLOYMENT LITIGATION

    1. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented an established family run restaurant and its owners in a lawsuit by a former employee who alleged discrimination, harassment, retaliation, and wrongful termination. Immediately after taking on the case, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith quickly interviewed all the relevant witnesses and presented the other side with a summary of future witness testimony that rebutted all the allegations set forth in the complaint. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith thereafter evaluated the merit of the claims, the potential expense of litigation, and the potential disruption to the restaurant’s business and was able to negotiate a settlement, the value of which was 30% of the former employee’s original demand.
    2. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented an international technology company before the California Labor Commission when a former employee claimed unpaid commissions. At the hearing, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith was able to present documentary and live testimony to refute the facts claimed. Based on our firm’s superior knowledge of the Labor Code and its application, the Labor Commissioner decided in our client’s favor, and awarded nothing to the claimant.
    3. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented a southern California City and one of its employees in an action brought by another current employee alleging wrongful denial of a promotion, retaliation, discrimination, and sexual harassment. With the consent of the defendants, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented both the City and the defendant employee in the action. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith conducted a thorough investigation into the employee’s claims, including an extensive document review and numerous witness interviews. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s preparation proved invaluable at mediation and allowed Bergman Dacey Goldsmith to negotiate a settlement, the value of which was not only a fraction of the initial demand but also allowed both employees to remain employed by the City.
  • Bergman Dacey Goldsmith Proudly Announces 2012 Rising Stars

    Posted June 21, 2012 By in Recent News With | No Comments

    Bergman Dacey Goldsmith is pleased to announce that attorneys Brian J. Bergman, Mitchell C. Frederick, and Arash Beral have been selected as 2012 Southern California Rising Stars by Super Lawyers Magazine. Rising Stars are considered the best attorneys who are under 40 years old or have been practicing less than ten years. These attorneys are selected through a nomination and research process where they are ranked on a point scale. No more than 2.5 % of the lawyers in the state are named to the list.

    Mr. Bergman is a Senior Associate at our firm. His practice focuses on construction, environmental, and land use law and litigation.

    Mr. Frederick is also a Senior Associate at our firm. His practice focuses primarily on defending corporations and public entities in state and federal employment litigation matters.

    Senior Associate Arash Beral’s practice focuses on complex business, construction, general litigation, and appellate matters. He has significant experience on matters involving temporary restraining orders and injunctive relief.

    The announcement is attached for your review. To learn more about how Bergman Dacey Goldsmith can apply our proven strategies for litigation excellence on your behalf and about our award-winning attorneys, visit our website at www.bdgfirm.com.

      Rising Stars 2012

  • Recent Results (April 2012)

    Posted March 29, 2012 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.

    EMPLOYMENT LITIGATION

    1. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented a southern California City in an action brought by a retired Finance Officer alleging a single claim of whistleblower retaliation pursuant to Section 1102.5 of the California Labor Code. Recognizing that the vast majority of the retiree’s claims did not constitute violations of state or federal law—the necessary predicate under Section 1102.5—and that many of his other claims of retaliation failed to constitute adverse employment actions as a matter of law, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith took the former employee’s deposition and drafted a comprehensive motion for summary judgment, which was subsequently granted by the Court. By employing our expertise in employment law, and specifically in whistleblower retaliation claims, not only did Bergman Dacey Goldsmith terminate the former employee’s case, but we were able to recoup an award of incurred costs to offset some of the City’s costs in defending this matter to a successful end. In the end, the entire cost of disposing of this case constituted less than 10% of the damages claimed, with the employee owing costs to the City.
    2. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented a southern California City in an action brought by a terminated police officer alleging various Constitutional claims and discrete violations of the California Public Safety Officers Procedural Bill of Rights Act in conjunction with his termination. After investigating the claims and confirming that California law strongly protects public entities against claims brought on the facts particular to this matter, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith – before even incurring the expense of filing a responsive pleading – negotiated an early resolution so that the City could avoid incurring any significant litigation fees or costs. The combined effect of Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s expertise of the applicable law, combined with deft negotiation skills, resulted in a resolution of the matter for a de minimis sum compared to the anticipated damage claim. Such sum constituted a mere fraction of the fees and costs that would have been incurred by the City had this matter proceeded to litigation and trial.
    3. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented a fast food restaurant and its owner in a lawsuit filed by a former employee who alleged eleven causes of action, including wrongful termination, discrimination, retaliation, fraudulent concealment, unfair business practices, and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith quickly obtained all relevant documents related to the claims, evaluated the merit of the claims, and was able to negotiate a settlement, the value of which was 30% of the former employee’s original demand. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s efficient handling also significantly reduced the legal expenses incurred by the client.

    FACILITIES AND CONSTRUCTION LITIGATION

    Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented a school district (“District”) in an enforcement of a stop notice action related to a multi-million dollar school modernization project filed against it by a subcontractor. Due to circumstances not within the control of the District, the subcontractor alleged that it was not paid by the general contractor and sought to enforce a stop notice against the District. At minimal litigation expense to the District, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith was able to negotiate and procure the dismissal of the District from the subcontractor’s lawsuit without the District having to expend any funds to settle the matter.

    TEACHER DISMISSAL

    1. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represents a large southern California school district in a teacher dismissal action. When the teacher attempted to modify his pled affirmative defenses merely days before the discovery cutoff, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith filed a motion to continue the hearing for good cause to conduct discovery on the newly pled defenses. When the tribunal denied the motion, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith immediately drafted and filed ex parte papers with the Los Angeles Superior Court to stay the dismissal matter, and then commenced a writ proceeding to obtain an order from the Superior Court compelling the underlying tribunal to provide the school district with more time to conduct discovery. The Superior Court issued a writ of mandate providing the school district with all of its requested relief. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s responsiveness preserved the status quo in the lower tribunal, while safeguarding the school district’s procedural rights, ultimately assisting the school district with its preparation for the dismissal hearing itself.
    2. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented a large southern California school district in a teacher dismissal action. The teacher was accused of unprofessional conduct and other related charges. Because the district’s case was built around circumstantial evidence, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith immediately began interviewing key witnesses and assembling as strong an evidentiary position to bring into a settlement conference with the accused teacher. Once presented with this evidence, the teacher conceded her case and agreed to resign in exchange for a modest settlement payment as consideration. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s responsiveness and litigation planning kept the district far ahead of the teacher and her counsel as the dismissal hearing approached, and ensured that the ultimate goal—the teacher’s separation—was achieved at modest expense.

    BUSINESS LITIGATION

    1. A worldwide financial firm retained Bergman Dacey Goldsmith on the Friday before the 3-day Christmas weekend to file a lawsuit and obtain a temporary restraining order against one of its former branch managers, who had recently resigned without notice and gone to work for a competitor. The former branch manager was accused of having misappropriated confidential and trade secret information by e-mailing it to his home computer, and then using that information to solicit the client’s customers and employees. Working through the holiday weekend, the lawyers at Bergman Dacey Goldsmith interviewed the key witnesses and marshaled the available evidence, drafted the necessary complaint, researched the applicable law, prepared an application for a TRO and Order to Show Cause re Preliminary Injunction together with supporting documents to present the relevant evidence and the controlling legal authorities, and–within 5 days of being retained—went to court to present the TRO application to a judge. Upon considering the TRO application and the supporting papers, the court issued an immediate restraining order by which the former branch manager was prohibited from initiating contact with the client’s customers or employees and was directed to make all of his electronic devices capable of storing information available for inspection and cleansing within a week. The former branch manager was also ordered to return to the client, within a week, all confidential or trade secret information he had taken.
    2. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith represented a private defendant in a collection matter. This matter involved thousands of dollars, as well as the collector’s persistent efforts to recover the interest and penalties associated with the alleged amount owed. After months of intense negotiations with the collector, the matter was settled for an amount that did not include penalties and/or interest on the amount owed, both costs the client could have owed if the matter proceeded to trial.

    CLASS ACTION LITIGATION

    Bergman Dacey Goldsmith defended a Southern California City in a class action lawsuit where the Plaintiff alleged that the City had failed to provide the proper amount of time to contest parking citations for years, thereby causing numerous individuals to be improperly charged late fees on parking citations. The City’s potential exposure was in the millions of dollars. Bergman Dacey Goldsmith attorneys aggressively litigated the mater to set up favorable settlement negotiations. Through Bergman Dacey Goldsmith’s litigation and negotiation efforts the City settled the matter for approximately 1% of its potential liability exposure. Further, after settlement was achieved, Bergman Dacey Goldsmith was able to cost effectively manage the terms of the class action settlement, including all required class action notice and payment procedures.

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