Summary – In this case Mr. Ehrlich convinced the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit that bad-faith claims against Medicare HMOs were not preempted by the Medicare Act, and could not be removed to federal court on the basis of federal preemption.
This was the first ERISA case in the 9th Circuit to hold that an insurer’s dual role as plan administrator and insurer created a conflict of interest that tainted its decision-making.
After her Toyota Camry was struck in a traffic collision by Olga Bello, Noriko Nori’s foot became trapped behind the brake pedal and was pressing on the accelerator pedal, causing her car to accelerate to 100 mph.
Ms. Nori was unable to control the vehicle and was killed when her car crashed into a tree. The jury awarded her heirs $10 million, and the defendants have appealed.
Richard Thompson was rendered a paraplegic when he lost his balance and fell through a defectively-constructed scaffold at the San Diego shipyard of National Steel and Shipbuilding Company (“NASSCO”). NASSCO obtained summary judgment against Thompson in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California. The district court granted NASSCO’s motion on numerous grounds, finding that there was no evidence that NASSCO had furnished unsafe equipment, and no evidence that furnishing the unsafe equipment affirmatively contributed to Thompson’s injuries. The Ninth Circuit reversed and remanded, rejecting all of the district court’s findings.
On July 14, 2008, the U.S. Court of Appeal for the Ninth Circuit affirmed a $15 million jury verdict on behalf of three Los Angeles Police Department officers who had been wrongfully accused by the department of corruption. In Harper v. City of Los Angeles, 533 F.3d 1010 (9th Cir. 2008), the court held that the evidence supported the jury’s verdict that the officers’ constitutional rights were violated, and that the award of $5,000,001 to each was not excessive. Jeffrey I. Ehrlich briefed and argued the appeal for the officers.
October 2006 – Three former Los Angeles Police Department officers who obtained a $15 million judgment against the City for wrongfully arresting them and accusing them of being corrupt have retained the Ehrlich Law Firm to defend their judgment in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.