A shareholder practicing from Murphy Pearson’s San Francisco office, Tim brings more than thirty years of experience as a seasoned trial lawyer. He passionately believes in our jury system and provides clients with the attention and commitment they deserve. They also benefit from his strategic guidance to make informed choices about settlement and resolution of matters when needed.
Knowing that every dispute has the potential to go to trial, Tim’s approach focuses on balancing the need for ongoing risk analysis, keeping a sharp eye on potential settlement outcomes, and thorough preparation to try a case to verdict. He has litigated a wide range of matters, including:
- Professional Liability: real estate brokers, lawyers, doctors, dentists, insurance agents
- Trademark/Copyright: celebrity use of photos, name and image
- Business Litigation: investor fraud, real estate fraud, partnership dispute
- Personal Injury: elder abuse, auto and/or bus accidents.
Recognized by the California State Bar as a Certified Specialist in Legal Malpractice Law, Tim is also AV Preeminent rated by Martindale-Hubbell (AV Preeminent is a certification mark used under license in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell® certification procedures, standards and policies).
- Greg Young Publishing, Inc. v. Zazzle, Inc. (2017) – Copyright infringement case that went to trial. The demand at trial was $2.1 million for statutory damages. The jury awarded approximately $450,000, which the court then reduced to approximately $350,000, both substantially less than what was offered prior to trial.
- Barnett v. Plastiras (2017) – Bifurcated trial for negligent supervision related to employee embezzlement. Obtained a defense judgment against the $3 million complaint and prevailed on indemnity cross-complaint for defense fees and costs.
- Goodman v. Stevenson (2014) – Fee Dispute Verdict for Client.
- Antoine v. Florida (2013) – Investor Fraud Verdict for Client.
- Barnett v. Hillyard (2012) – Represented attorney in legal malpractice case; the verdict against client was $500,000 – less than CCP § 998 by Plaintiff which was $2.3M.
- Antoine v. Florida (2012) – Investor fraud; represent physician in action against real estate fraud scam. Plaintiff verdict, $350,000 for client.
- Brown v. Wald (2011) – Broker malpractice case; settled during deliberations, for less than pre-trial demand.
- Nicholas v. Millstein (2010) – Legal malpractice case arising out of a family law matter. Nonsuit. Defense verdict.
- Hogue v. Ford (2009) – Lawyers professional liability case. Following the closing of all evidence, the Court rendered a nonsuit as to 11 causes of action in favor of MPBF client. Pre-trial demand of $800,000. Defense judgment.
- Alvarado v. Verdugo / Ortiz v. Verdugo (2009) – Combined wrongful death and personal injury action. Defense of security guard company. Pretrial demand over $300,000. Resolved for less than $100,000 after motions in limine.
- Mountz v. Whiting (2007) – Legal malpractice claim, family law matter, pretrial settlement demand $1.3 million, defense verdict.
- Greene Archives v. Julien’s (2007) – Federal copyright infringement jury trial, copyright claims regarding Marilyn Monroe photographs, pretrial demand $1.8 million, defense verdict.
Published Appellate Decisions
- Stine v. Dell’Osso, et al., 230 Cal.App.4 th 834 (2014), Court of Appeal of California, First District, Division One, October 17, 2014 – Issue of Attorney Obligation as Counsel for Conservator.
- Siebel v. Mittlesteadt, et al., 62 Cal.Rptr.3d 155 (2007), Supreme Court of California, July 16, 2007
- State Farm General Insurance Company v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., et al., 49 Cal.Rptr.3d 785 (2006), Court of Appeal of California, First District, Division Four, October 10, 2006
- Levin v. Ligon, et al., 45 Cal.Rptr.3d 560 (2006), Court of Appeal of California, First District, Division Two, June 30, 2006 – Defined Scope of Foreign Judgments for Collateral Estoppel.
- Siebel v. Mittlesteadt, et al., 12 Cal.Rptr.3d 906 (2004), Court of Appeal, Sixth District, May 6, 2004
- Jeffrey H. v. Imai, Tadlock & Keeney, et al., 101 Cal.Rptr.2d 916 (2000), Court of Appeal of California, First District, Division One, December 8, 2000
Unpublished Appellate Decisions
- Lico v. Prioste, et al., California Court of Appeal, First District (2017) – Defeated appeal of summary judgment dismissing legal malpractice complaint on statute of limitations grounds.
- Greg Young Publishing, Inc. v. Zazzle, Inc., Case No. 2:16-cv- 04587-SVW- KS, United States District Court, C.D. California, January 31, 2017
- Deep Photonics Corporation v. LaChapelle, et al., 282 Or.App.533, Court of Appeals of Oregon, November 30, 2016
- Kainth, et al. v. Pannell, Case No. F065783, Court of Appeal of California, Fifth District, December 11, 2014
- Brighton Collectibles, Inc. v. RK Texas Leather MFG.; K & L Imports, Inc., et al., 923 F.Supp.2d 1245 (2013), United States District Court, S.D. California, February 12, 2013
- Van Maanen v. Youth With A Mission-Bishop, 852 F.Supp.2d 1232 (2012), United States District Court, E.D. California, February 14, 2012
- In Re: Edward H. Okun Internal Revenue Service § 1031 Tax Deferred Exchange Litigation. Hunter, et al. v. Citibank, N.A., et al., Case Nos. 5:09- md-02028- JW, 09-cv- 02079 JW, United States District Court, N.D. California, San Jose Division, January 20, 2011
- Franciscan Resident Advisory Committee, et al. v. Linc Housing Corporation, et al., Case No. C 10-01087 JW, United States District Court, N.D. California, San Francisco Division, August 24, 2010
- Franciscan Mobile Home Owners for Justice, et al. v. Linc Housing Corporation, et al., Case No. CV 101087 JW, United States District Court, D. California, San Jose Division, August 11, 2010
- Wolk v. Green, 516 F.Supp.2d 1121 (2007), United States District Court, N.D. California, August 22, 2007
- American College of Trial Lawyers, Fellow
- American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), Member
- National Board of Trial Advocacy, Board Certified Member
- San Francisco AIDS Legal Referral Panel (ALRP)
- Lifetime achievement award
- Bar Association of San Francisco
- Settlement attorney
- Mediator, professional liability matters
- “Attorney Malpractice Panel Event,” Asian-American Bar Association of the Greater Bay Area, San Francisco, CA, August 8, 2018
- “The Business of a Trust & Estates Practice – Practical Guide for Sole Practitioners and Small Firm,” co-presented with Susan Kilano, Ahern Insurance, California Lawyers Association, San Francisco, CA, June 29, 2018
- “50 States of Grey: Protect Yourself From the Last of Elder Financial Abuse Statutes,” co-presented with Karen Stromeyer at Private Client, New York, NY, May 30, 2018
- “Intellectual Property Litigation: An Introduction, presented to private insurance carrier client,” co-presented with Keith G. Adams, February 23, 2018
- “50 States of Grey: Protect Yourself from the Lash of Elder Abuse Statues,” American Bar Association National Legal Malpractice Conference, panel discussion, April 28, 2016 in New Orleans, LA
- “Elder Abuse in Legal Malpractice,” 2016, American Bar Association, New Orleans, LA
- “Navigating the Black Hole of California’s Mediation Confidentiality Statutes,” co-authored with Jonathan M. Blute, San Francisco Attorney, Fall 2018
- “Review Your Business Entity to Minimize Your Malpractice Exposure,” Plaintiff Magazine, co-authored with Karen K. Stromeyer, November 2015
- “Private Lawsuits, Public Lawyers,” Plaintiff Magazine, co-authored with Karen K. Stromeyer, November 2014
- “Never Settle For A Simple Settlement Agreement,” Plaintiff Magazine, Co- Authored with Karen K. Stromeyer, October 2012
- “Don’t End up in the Worst Chair in the Room: Tips from legal malpractice defense counsel,” Plaintiff Magazine, Co-Authored with Karen K. Stromeyer, October 2011
- Selected for inclusion to the Northern California Super Lawyer magazine (2004 – present)
- Featured in the Bar Association of San Francisco’s CLE Bulletin in the October 2016 “Member Spotlight”
J.D., University of California, Hastings College of Law
B.A., University of California, Berkeley