Education

University of California, San Francisco
J.D. Hastings College of the Law

 

Brown University
M.A. Environmental Studies

 

University of Oregon
B.A. Public Policy and Environmental Studies
magna cum laude

I have been practicing law for more than 20 years.  I maintain a law office in the Sierra/Tahoe area from Downieville, California as well as the San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles, and the Pacific Northwest.  

 

My goal as a legal advocate is that my clients should live their best lives, instead of living a lawsuit, unless there truly is no other option.  I work to win, but also to solve issues quickly, efficiently and fairly, which is not always what happens in the courts.  I have settled cases in the hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars, and drafted claim applications in multiple jurisdictions for settlement funds involving environmental, personal injury, product liability and mass tort claims.  All cases eventually settled.  The best I had settled reasonably quickly, so that clients could move on.  When cases extend for years or longer, I found that some people have difficulty in their personal, financial and emotional lives.

 

I know what wildfire victims face in the courts.  I know what it takes to win.  I also know settlement offer worth careful consideration when I see one. The PG&E Community Recovery Program for the Dixie and Fly Fires is such an offer.  https://www.dp4cr.com.  While the legal system certainly allows wildfire victims the ability to sue for damages, the process can take years and may not, in the end, provide the desired amount in settlement, if any.  Judgments, even if won, especially when the awards are extraordinary, may take even more time and are usually appealed.  Therefore, even successful cases can nearly always be expected to settle for less than desired because the pursuit takes too long.  Compromise may be inevitable because litigation is expensive.  Time is money.  Time is life.


Practice Areas

  • Insurance Law and Litigation

  • Settlements

  • Wildfire Litigation


Press
  • Quoted by the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, and the San Francisco Chronicle.

  • Profiled in the Daily Journal, Brown Alumni Magazine, and featured in a book on women lawyers published by the American Bar Association.
     

Advocacy
  • Fundraising Committee Member/Amicus Working Group for United Policyholders, the leading non-profit advocating for insurance claimants in disaster recovery nationwide. www.uphelp.org