Mass Tort & Wildfire Litigation
2007 San Diego Wildfire Litigation
In conjunction with The Law Offices of Alexander M. Schack, Spreter | Petiprin represented over 300 individuals, families, and businesses against SDG&E, Sempra Energy, et al., for damages resulting from the 2007 San Diego Wildfires, which were ignited by their utility lines. The fires caused the loss of 1,300 homes, and the evacuation of over 500,000 people — the largest mass evacuation in California history. The firm served as a court-appointed discovery coordinator for this litigation, and was an active member of the trial team. The firm was involved in over $55,000,000 worth of settlements.
2011 Caughlin Ranch Fire Litigation
The Caughlin Ranch Fire was ignited by power lines and caused the destruction of more than 30 homes, burned over 2,000 acres, and caused the evacuation of 10,000 residents of Reno, Nevada. The court appointed Spreter | Petiprin as co-lead counsel for the individual litigation. Spreter | Petiprin and its co-counsel represented over 57 fire victims and recovered $4,000,000.
2013 Peiffer Fire Litigation
On December 15, 2013, the Pfeiffer Fire started in the Los Padres National Forrest. The fire caused the loss of 34 homes and destroyed over 900 acres of pristine irreplaceable wilderness. According to a U.S. Forest Service report issued one year after the fire, the Pfeiffer Fire was caused by high resistance heating of the Pfeiffer Ridge Mutual Water & Road Company’s electrical control wires immediately adjacent to a steel water pipeline operated by the company. Spreter | Petiprin successfully prosecuted a case against the water company alleged to have started the fire. Group Settlement Amount: $1,800,000.
2015 Butte Fire Litigation
The Butte Fire started on September 9, 2015 and burned until October 2, 2015. It is considered the 7th most destructive fire in California history. The fire, which is alleged to have started when a tree came into contact with one of PG&E’s power lines, killed three people, destroyed more than 70,000 acres, and caused the destruction of over 475 homes, and 343 outbuildings. Spreter | Petiprin represented homeowners and renters who have lost their homes, personal property, and landscaping as a result of the fire.
2016 Erskine Fire
The Erskine Fire occurred near Lake Isabella, an area of Kern County. The fire started on June 23, 2016, when a private powerline exploded on land owned by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, and operated by the Kern River Archers, under an agreement with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. According to the Kern County Fire Department, which released its findings on December 22, 2016, the powerline had rubbed itself bare on a tree limb near the ignition site, causing arching. The fire burned for nearly 2 weeks, burning 300 structures, and destroying close to 48,000 acres. It is considered the 15th most Damaging California Wildfire in California history by Cal Fire. The Spreter | Petiprin is currently representing over 260 indivdiuals who have lost their homes, personal property, landscaping, or suffer other harm as a result of the fire.
In Re: Testosterone Replacement Therapy Products Liability Litigation
Spreter | Petiprin is currently representing a plaintiff who suffered heart complications, including blood clots and pulmonary embolism, after taking the prescription drug AndroGel. This matter is currently pending, as part of a coordinated multi-district mass action, before the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois.
Consumer Fraud & Unfair Business Practices
In re: Lenovo Adware Litigation
Garnering media attention, Spreter | Petiprin (along with co-counsel) filed the first case, Bennet v. Lenovo, Inc. et al., Case No. 3:15-CV-00368, against Defendant Lenovo, Inc. and Superfish, Inc. for placing spyware on Lenovo computers, which allegedly violated consumer protection and computer trespass statutes. This spyware created a fake security-certificate that left consumer’s computers potentially vulnerable to cyber-attacks and hackers. The matter is currently pending as part of a consolidated proceeding in U.S. District Court, Northern District of California.
Hine v. Scottrade, Inc.
Spreter | Petiprin filed the first class action against Scottrade, Inc. over the 2013 and 2014 data breach which caused the loss of over 4.6 million customers of Scottrade’s personal information. The lawsuit alleges that Scottrade was negligent in its security practices and provided inadequate notice to customers affected by the breach. The firm has petitioned the Court to be appointed to the Executive Steering Committee for the litigation. The matter is currently pending as part of a consolidated proceeding in U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Missouri.
Well-Med Global, LLC v. NHT Global, Inc., et al.
Plaintiffs allege that their prior-executives misapproprirated trade secret and confidential information prior to and after their departure. It is also alleged that the information was used to unlawfully solicit the plaintiff’s distributor base for the launch of a rival product. The matter is currently pending in the Superior Court of Los Angeles. A separate arbitration is being prosecuted against the prior-executives before AAA.
Burns v. Tristar Products, Inc., et al.
Represented purchasers of the “As Seen On TV” product the Flex-Able Hose. The hoses were marketed as a revolutionary expandable garden hose, but many consumers experienced problems with rupturing and leaking. This case was settled through confidential mediation.
Business v. Business
Defendants in the matter were alleged to have made defamatory statements and interfered with the Plaintiffs’ business opportunities. Settlement amount: $315,000.
In re: Disposable Contact Lens Antitrust Litigation
Representing consumers of contact lenses, in a class action alleging several large manufactures of the lenses colluded to impose minimum retail price agreements on their products, which violated State and Federal antitrust laws. The matter is currently pending in the U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida.
In re: Capacitors Antitrust Litigation
Spreter | Petiprin, along with co-counsel, filed a consolidated complaint alleging various electronics companies colluded to restrain the trade of aluminum and tantalum electrolytic capacitors, in violation of California State and Federal antitrust laws. The conspiracy was alleged to have taken place using trade meetings, and the sharing of output and sales data amongst the manufactures.
Bentley v. Lyft, Inc.
This case involves allegations that rideshare company Lyft, Inc. failed to hire a driver based upon his disability status. This case was confidentially settled.
Associate v. Associate
Business associate alleged she was sexaully harrassed by business associate that was in position of power. Settlment Amount: $60,000.
Rhoades, et al. v. Fonseca, et al.
Spreter | Petiprin recently obtained class certification on behalf of group of individuals who are alleged to have been misclassified as independent contractors when they were, in fact, employees. It is also alleged that the Defendants failed to pay overtime and provide required meal and rest breaks. The court appointed Spreter | Petiprin as class counsel in the matter.