Pam Okano successfully handled an appeal with two other law firms. A ground services handler was seriously injured in a motor vehicle accident at an airport. A jury apportioned 25% fault to the Port, 0.2% to plaintiff, and the remainder to four nondefendant airlines that had contracted with plaintiff’s employer for ground handling services. Consequently, the Port was liable for $10 million of plaintiff’s $40 million in damages. The Washington Court of Appeals reversed, holding the Port vicariously liable for the airlines and thus for 100% of the damages. Pam and her co-counsel persuaded the Washington Supreme Court to reverse the Court of Appeals. The Court ruled that the Port was not vicariously liable for the airlines’ failure to ensure a safe workplace, thereby restoring the trial court’s judgment that the Port was liable for only $10 million of plaintiff’s $40 million damages. Afoa v. Port of Seattle, 191 Wn.2d 110, 421 P.3d 903 (2018). (Published Opinion)

Bill Hickman and Pam Okano have been listed in the 25th Edition of The Best Lawyers in America.  Bill has been selected by his peers for Appellate Practice since 2007.  Pam has been listed for Appellate Practice, as well as Insurance Law, since 2014.

We are very proud to announce that Bill Hickman and Pam Okano were named to Thomson Reuters’ 2018 Washington Super Lawyers List for appellate practice, Marilee Erickson has been named for Civil Litigation: Defense, and Suzanna Shaub was named to Thomson Reuters’ 2018 Rising Star list for Personal Injury General: Defense.

The Washington State Bar Association honored Bill Hickman on November 3, 2017 at a tribute luncheon, along with others who have been bar members for 50 years.  Here, in part, is what they said: “Fifty years is a lengthy tenure of service and we greatly value the service you have provided to the people of Washington during your extensive and distinguished career.”

Reed McClure has been named in the 2018 edition of “Best Law Firms,” a U.S. News-Best Lawyers publication, for Appellate Practice, Insurance Law, and Construction Litigation.

Bill Hickman has been listed in the 24th Edition of The Best Lawyers in America.  He has been selected by his peers for Appellate Practice since 2007.

Marilee Erickson‘s article “MAR 7.3 Attorney Fees—What is the Test to Determine Whether You Improved Your Position on Trial De Novo?” was published in the Summer 2017 edition of the Washington Defense Trial Lawyer’s Defense News.

On August 14, Mike Rogers won an appeal in the Court of Appeals.  Our client’s insured punched somebody in the face and broke his jaw.  The insured claimed he didn’t intend to injure the victim.  The Court of Appeals affirmed summary judgment finding no coverage under a homeowners policy for a lawsuit against the insured.  The court held that the injury was not an accident because a broken jaw is a reasonably foreseeable result of striking somebody in the face.

We are very proud to announce that Bill Hickman has been included in Thomson Reuters’ Top 100: 2017 Washington Super Lawyers List for appellate practice.  We are also proud to announce that Pam Okano & Marilee Erickson have been included in Thomson Reuters’ 2017 Washington Super Lawyers list.

On March 31st, Jason Vacha chaired the WDTL Annual Insurance Law Update seminar.  Jason is the chair of the Insurance Section of WDTL.  Marilee Erickson spoke on IFCA Actual Damages.

In February 2017, Mike Rogers achieved a defense verdict in a bad faith, IFCA, and CPA suit.  The jury concluded it was reasonable for the insurer to offer to pay to wash a rental home contaminated with meth in compliance with state and county regulatory requirements.  The owner insisted on removing all walls and ceilings.

Pam Okano preserved a defense verdict obtained by Jack Rankin and Suzanna Shaub. Plaintiff suffered brain damage when he fell through the ceiling at the Walla Walla State Penitentiary while working in the crawl space. He claimed the general contractor that had built the building should have warned the penitentiary the ceiling could not be walked on, even though the contract did not require walkability. A jury disagreed. So did the Washington Court of Appeals. The Washington Supreme Court refused to review.

Jason Vacha recently obtained a tremendous result in a two-week jury trial. Plaintiff claimed permanent cognitive impairment and asked for $1 million. The jury awarded plaintiff just $12,000, following Jason’s suggestion in closing argument. And the jury found plaintiff partially at fault, leaving Jason’s client to pay only $4,400.

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