FOCUS OF PRACTICE
Financial Services Litigation
Jeff, again nominated in 2023 as a Southern California Super Lawyer, has been a civil litigator on behalf of plaintiffs for his entire career handling complex matters in federal and state courts, and arbitration. With experience in all aspects of civil trial and appellate practice, he has concentrated on consumer class actions in courts throughout the country representing consumers against large corporations and now does the same in financial services litigation and mass torts.
In the area of class actions, Jeff recently represented several notable musicians, among them, The Temptations and The Motels, in class actions seeking compensation relating to the payment of digital download royalties from their record labels including Universal Music Group, Capitol EMI and Warner Brothers. Jeff has also represented various Hollywood notables, including the estates of Charles Bronson, Peter Sellers and Richard Pryor, seeking payment of home video royalties from major movies studios including Universal Studios, Paramount Pictures, Twentieth Century Fox, and Sony Pictures. The settlements with the studios resulted in payments to class members exceeding $51 million. He has also been active against major automobile manufacturers such as BMW relating to the timing chain in MINI Cooper vehicles, Toyota for HVAC systems, GM for braking issues and Mazda for water pump failures. Jeff also litigates on behalf of individual investors as a result of wrongdoing by their financial services advisors including currently litigating a $10+ million loss suffered by an Indian Tribe.
Skeen v. BMW, United States District Court, District of New Jersey. Nationwide class action alleging defective timing chain tensioner in certain turbo model MINI Cooper automobiles results in engine damage. Class settlement approved which provided for refunds to consumers, free repairs and an extended warranty. Settlement checks to the class averaged $1,300 each.
Colin Higgins Productions, Ltd. v. Universal City Studios, Colin Higgins Productions, Ltd. v. Paramount Pictures Corporation, Larry E. Martindale v. Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc., Stanley Donen Films, Inc. v. Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, Los Angeles County. Nationwide class actions brought by profit participants who challenged how they were being paid by studios on home video revenue received from subsidiaries. Gross settlements of $51 million approved.
In re: Warner Music Group Corp. Digital Downloads Litigation, United States District Court, Northern District of California. Nationwide class action alleging Warner Music failed to properly account to class members for digital downloads and ringtones under certain contracts. Plaintiffs claimed that such transactions should have been paid at a “license” rate rather than a “sale” rate. The Court approved a settlement of at least $11.5 million.
Nader v. Capital One Bank (U.S.A.), N.A., United States District Court, Central District of California. Class action covering California, Florida, Maryland, Nevada and New Hampshire, alleging that Capital One wrongfully recorded telephone calls with consumers without their consent. The settlement approved by the Court created a fund of $3 million to be paid to consumers
Tully v. AT&T Communications of California, Inc., Superior Court of California, Los Angeles County. California statewide class action alleging overcharging and improper collection of fees by telecommunication carrier. The settlement approved by the Court created a fund of $4.3 million to be returned to the Class of more than 318,000 low income consumers which represented the amounts that they were overcharged plus interest.
In re LG/Zenith Rear Projection Television Class Action Litigation, United States District Court, District of New Jersey. Nationwide consolidated class action representing tens of thousands of consumers alleging that televisions were sold to the public with defective components resulting in discoloration of the picture. Settlement approved that provided for refunds and repairs valued at tens of millions of dollars.
In re Sony SXRD Rear Projection Television Class Action Litigation, United States District Court, Southern District of New York. Nationwide class action brought on behalf of hundreds of thousands of consumers alleging that televisions were sold with an inherent defect which caused color anomalies to be displayed across their screens. In approving the settlement, the Court noted that the settlement terms provided a “comprehensive remedy to class members”.
Friedman v. Samsung Electronics America and Summer v. Toshiba America Consumer Products, Inc., Superior Court of New Jersey, and Messick v. Pioneer Electronics, USA, Inc., Superior Court of California, Los Angeles County. Three separate nationwide class actions brought on behalf of millions of consumers alleging that Samsung, Toshiba and Pioneer DVD players contained inherent defects rendering them incompatible with the DVD Video specification and unable to properly play DVD Video discs. The settlements approved by the Courts were valued at more than $100 million.
Maish v. Criterion Catalysts Company, Superior Court of California, Los Angeles County. Class of more than 100 workers certified asserting wage and hour claims. Settlement for back wages and interest negotiated and approved by the Court.
Weber v. Saint John’s Health Center, Shimada v. Dun & Bradstreet, Inc. and Duronslet v. Transworld Systems, Inc., United States District Court, Central District of California. Three nationwide class actions on behalf of more than 11,000, 51,000 and 1.5 million class members, respectively, alleging violations of the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Monetary settlements were negotiated and approved by the Court in each matter.
Warner Bros. Entm’t Inc. v. Superior Court, 29 Cal. App. 5th 243 (2018)
Ford Motor Warranty Cases, 11 Cal. App. 5th 626 (2017)
Loeffler v. Target Corp., 58 Cal. 4th 1081 (2014)
Lopez v. Brown, 217 Cal. App. 4th 1114 (2013)
Spielman v. Ex’pression Ctr. for New Media, 191 Cal. App. 4th 420 (2010)
Pioneer Elecs. (USA) Inc. v. Superior Court, 40 Cal. 4th 360 (2007)
Bush v. Cheaptickets, Inc., 425 F.3d 683 (9th Cir. 2005)
Morohoshi v. Pacific Home, 34 Cal. 4th 482 (2004)
Bird, Marella, Boxer & Wolpert v. Superior Court, 106 Cal. App. 4th 419 (2003)
President-Elect, Federal Bar Association (Los Angeles)
Member, Merit Selection Panel (United States District Court, Central District of California)
Immediate past Co-Chair (Complex Courts Committee), Los Angeles County Bar Association
Executive Committee Member (Litigation Section Committee), Los Angeles County Bar Association
Committee Member (PIABA Bar Journal), The Public Investors Arbitration Bar Association
Member, American Association for Justice
Member, Association of Business Trial Lawyers (Los Angeles)
Member, California Indian Law Association
Member, Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles
Member, Consumer Attorneys of California
State Bar of California, 1997
State Bar of New Jersey, 1995
State Bar of New York, 1997
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
U.S. District Court, Central District of California
U.S. District Court, Eastern District of California
U.S. District Court, Northern District of California
U.S. District Court, Southern District of California
U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey
U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York
U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York
Juris Doctor – Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, New York, NY, 1995
Member and Supervising Editor, Cardozo Law Review
Bachelor of Arts – Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, 1989
“The Ethics of Artificial Intelligence for Lawyers,” 2023 PIABA Annual Meeting, Colorado Springs, CO (2023)
“Ethical Issues in the Use of AI in Your Bankruptcy Practice: Not the Fresh Start You Were Hoping For,” Federal Bar Association 20th Annual Bankruptcy Ethics Symposium, Los Angeles, CA (2023)
“AI Nuts & Bolts – How Does It Work and What Can It Do?” and “Regulations and Ethics,” United States District Court 2023 Hawaii District Conference, Honolulu, HI (2023)
“Artificial Intelligence in the Legal Practice and the Ethical Ramifications,” American Bar Association Webinar, TIPS Non-CLE Lunch & Learn Series (July 14, 2023)
“A case in New York last week is a cautionary tale in using artificial intelligence in your practice,” Daily Journal (May 30, 2023)
“Using AI/ChatGPT in Your Law Practice: Practical Use & Ethical Considerations,” Beverly Hills Bar Association Webinar (2023)
“Now that you’re using AI, what are the ethical pitfalls,” Daily Journal (May 10, 2023)
“A 5-minute guide to using ChatGPT-4 in your practice,” Daily Journal (May 1, 2023)
“A brief exploration into using AI in the practice of law,” Daily Journal (April 17, 2023)
“The Facebook/Meta Tool that Steals Your Medical Data”, Decrypt Daily with Matthew Diemer (Dec. 9, 2022)
“10 Commandments of eDiscovery,” Lexeprint Webinar (2021)
“Choosing Financial Professionals: Best practices, and Options When Things Go Wrong,” Oklahoma Tribal Finance Consortium, Tulsa, OK (2020)
“20th Annual Litigators Forum: Hot Topics In Privacy and Data Protection,” Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA (2015)
“Settling the Class: A Guide to Negotiating, Drafting and Obtaining Court Approval for Class Action Settlements,” Association of Business Trial Lawyers (Los Angeles), Los Angeles, CA (2015)
“Technology Update,” CalCPA Education Foundation 35th Annual Family Law Conference, Los Angeles and San Francisco, CA (2015)
“Electronically Stored Information – New Opportunities and Mandatory Obligations,” CalCPA Education Foundation 35th Annual Family Law Conference, Los Angeles and San Francisco, CA (2015)
“Data Privacy Class Actions,” National Consumer Law Center 2013 Consumer Rights Litigation Conference, Washington D.C. (2013)
“Artificial ‘intelligence’ or Hal 9000 goes to law school,” Daily Journal (April 7, 2023) (co-authored)
“Tips and best practices in Los Angeles’ Complex Courts,” Daily Journal (Nov. 10, 2021) (co-authored)
“The personal black box,” Daily Journal (July 7, 2015) (co-authored)