BUZZ WIESENFELD, ESQ.

  • Available in Northern California
  • Mediation Only

Introduction

Buzz Wiesenfeld has been a full time mediator for over 19 years. During this time, he has resolved over 4,000 disputes involving personal injury, professional negligence, employment and commercial matters. His dedication and commitment to the art of resolution have inspired him to participate in dozens of training seminars, as well as a Master's program in conflict management. He is known for his calm, but persistent, tenacity in bringing relevant focus and risk assessment to each case. One attorney commented that "he has an uncanny ability to connect with a variety of personalities, and he brings a very high level of trial experience to the table." Another attorney said that he is "reasonable, practical-minded, and tenacious with post mediation follow up."

Specialties

Experience Summary

Legal Career

  • Mediator (full time practice): (1993-Present)
  • Mediator, BatesEdwards Group/Endispute/JAMS (1993-1997)
  • Mediator, Solo Practice/co-founder Resolution Arts Group (1997-Present)
  • Anwyl, Wiesenfeld & Rushford (1989-1993)
  • Stumbos & Mason (1979-1989)
  • Bullen, McKone & McKinley (1975-1979)

Education & Professional Affiliations

  • M.A. Antioch University, Yellow Spring Ohio (2004)
  • J.D. University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law (1975)
  • B.A. University of California, Berkeley (1971)
  • Member, American Board of Trial Advocates
  • Diplomate Member, California Academy of Distinguished Neutrals (2007-Present)
  • Adjunct/Volunteer Mediator, California Lawyers for the Arts, Sacramento Mediation Center, CCP, (formerly California Center for Public Dispute Resolution)
  • Member, Sacramento County Bar ADR section, State Bar ADR section, ABA, ADR section, CDRC, ACR

Achievements & Awards

  • Diplomate, California & National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals
  • Member, ABOTA (American Board of Trial Advocates) (1988)
  • Martindale-Hubbell A-V Rating;
  • Rotarian of the Year, Point West Rotary Club (2001)
  • Bear Backer of the Year, UC Berkeley (2008)
  • Master's Cohort, Antioch University (2004)
  • Trustee’s Citation, UC Berkeley Foundation (2012)

Hobbies & Interests

Buzz enjoys road cycling, golf, and hiking. He is an active supporter of students in the west end of the San Juan Unified School District through tutoring, mentoring and fundraising, and is devoted to his wife of 34 years, two sons, UC Berkeley, and his chocolate Lab, who trains him daily.

Legal Experience

  • Product liability
  • Serious injury claims
  • Wrongful death
  • Professional negligence
  • Employment
  • Elder Abuse
  • Commercial disputes
  • Contract
  • Real Estate
  • Construction
  • Disability Insurance Contract /ERISA disputes

Representative Case Information

Recent Representative Cases

Business/Commercial

Complex Commercial

  • Complex commercial case involving environmental contamination/cleanup arising from operation of family business, in conjunction with dissolution/transfer and probate dispute.

Contractual

  • Professional partnership dispute/dissolution resulting in buy-out for departing partner and revisions to intra-partnership management for remaining partners.

Employment

A D A

  • Employment, Disability Discrimination, Wrongful Termination. Project manager for school construction company with back injury/surgery - return to work and terminated for performance issues shortly thereafter.
  • Employment/Disability - failure to engage in genuine interactive process. Issues included details of communications between HR, employee, employee representatives and physician, with reference to medical limitations as they related to proposed accommodations for part time work, further leave and anticipated recovery from psych condition that triggered anxiety/panic in connection with working with the public at busy office of municipality.

Discrimination

  • Employment, wrongful termination arising from allegation of religious discrimination and dispute regarding manager of national store.
  • Employment, claims of constructive discharge in setting alleged disability discrimination, failure to accommodate and engage in interactive process.
  • Employment dispute involving alleged retaliation for complaints of differential treatment based on ethnicity. Plaintiff continued as an employee following suit. Settlement involved monetary and non-monetary consideration including resignation, letter of reference, and limited benefit continuation.
  • Employment: Disability discrimination/retaliation with counter allegation of time card fraud. P, had periodic time off accommodation for original disability, developed a new illness at work, made errors clocking in/out and told various stories. P immediately terminated, without consideration that illness effected memory with other factors suggesting supervisor had discriminatory motive.
  • Fee dispute in employment matter which resolved earlier pursuant to CCP section 998 offer. Issues included rate/hours claimed and paralegal rate/hours.
  • Employment, wrongful termination, disability discrimination, failure to accommodate, racial discrimination, harassment. Issues included actionability of politically divisive language used in the workplace arising from the recent presidential campaign as it related to Hispanic population.
  • Employment/Gender Discrimination for repeated failure to promote in Fire Department, with plaintiff still employed by municipality.

ERISA

  • ERISA/de novo review case; Plaintiff on claim since 1999 regarding failed back surgery syndrome; challenging medical chart regarding objective evidence of disability from sedentary work.
  • ERISA; Breach of Disability Policy contract; Plaintiff with PTSD, no objective neurological or cognitive deficits, but disabled due to anxiety, depression, panic attacks.
  • ERISA death claim. Issues included representations made by decedent on application for supplemental additional coverage within a year of death, comparison with medical records after post mortem underwriting review concluded coverage would not have issued had company known.

Fed. Whistleblower - Qui Tam

  • Employment, public entity, allegation of harassment, and whistle blower status.

Hostile Environment

  • Employment, sports franchise employee, allegations of sexual harassment, hostile work environment.
  • Employment, constructive termination claims based upon sexual harassment by executive of high earning sales associate.

Whistleblower Wrongful Term

  • Employment, wrongful termination allegations based on retaliation for protected reporting to public agency with claims of public interest.

Wrongful Termination

  • Employment, wrongful termination, retaliation, whistle-blower allegations with parallel qui tam action, arising from employment with job training company. Allegations regarding fraudulent enrollment and billing practices with federal programs. Issues included whether protected act existed, potential for intervention/consolidation, damages. Also alleged misrepresentation to induce employment.
  • Employment: Disability discrimination, Plaintiff was a warehouse worker; injured with workers compensation claims, took multiple leaves, and returned to work with medical limitations. Issues included good faith consideration of disability, requests for accommodation with designated work, modifications without affecting essential duties and availability of other positions. Plaintiff was re-assigned to another position, but arguably more strenuous, had performance issues and was terminated following progressive discipline.
  • Plaintiff worked for a public entity: Allegations of retaliation for plaintiff's refusal to divulge information to publicly elected official who was direct supervisor resulting in forced early retirement with loss of salary, benefits and emotional distress. Issues included elements of whistle blower theory, scope of protected activity and motive.

Probate

Estates/Trusts

  • Family Business, estate and trust dispute - negotiated transfer of business to only interested heir, responsibility for business tax issues and adjustments to estate gifts for balance of heirs.

Real Estate

Real Estate Land Use

  • Land use, dispute between local city and developer of low cost housing.

Tort

A.D.A Act

  • ADA Matter: Hearing Impaired Discrimination in seeking medical fees. 6 physicians sued, all claims exposure uninsured with statutory penalties alleged. 4 of 6 cases resolved.

Catastrophic Injury

  • Brain damage with permanent cognitive and emotional deficits from fall while in custody. Issues included standard of care, comparative, Plaintiff's prior physical, mental status and degree of diminution in capacities given employment/medical history prior to incident.
  • Plaintiff fell down allegedly defective stairs and suffered brain injury, cognitive deficits and need for life care. Liability issues including pre-fall drug, alcohol and balance issues, as well as short history of repairs in response to complaints. Considerable debate about pre/post accident prospects for long term care, given plaintiff's checkered past.

Elder Abuse

  • Elder Abuse, allegations of death caused by neglect, dehydration, staffing issues.
  • Fall at acute care facility following below knee amputation with injury to amputation wound allegedly causing further amputation above knee. Issues included physical therapy standard of care, medical causation given preexisting vascular disease along with other risk factors.

Personal Injury

  • Multiple sexual assaults by cab driver on intellectually impaired adult being transported under contract with coordinator for specialized educational programs. Driver criminally prosecuted, plead no contest and now registered as a sex offender. Suit against both cab company and program coordinator. Few special damages and narrative focused primarily on emotional distress/general damages as Plaintiff not a candidate for conventional psychotherapy. Legal issues included damage claims of parents, indemnity contract interpretation and absence of contracted for additional insured status for the benefit of program coordinator that retained cab company.

Product Liability

  • Product liability, catastrophic injury alleged from defective seat belt design, installation, repair in roll over accident.
  • Product Liability for implanted orthopedic medical device. Issues included cause/mechanism of failure, patient's physiology, statistical percentages of failure, surgical standard of practice as well as status of successor implanted device. Other issues included scope of product advisories and selection of appropriate surgical candidates.

Toxic Torts

  • Toxic mold personal injury and property claims in mass apartment complex litigation involving more than 100 claimants.

Wrongful Death

  • Gas Explosion, wrongful death, injury and property claims arising against public utility.
  • Wrongful Death/Auto; decedent emancipated daughter/ claimants divorced parents.

Downtown Los Angeles

601 S. Figueroa
Ste 4000
Los Angeles, CA 90017
Phone: 213.223.1113
Fax      : 213.223.1114

Los Angeles Mediation

West Los Angeles

11601 Wilshire Blvd
Ste 2040
Los Angeles, CA 90025
Phone: 310.442.2100
Fax      : 310.442.2125

Mediators Los Angeles

San Diego

402 W. Broadway
Ste 2400
San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619.814.1966
Fax      : 619.814.1967

San Diego Mediation

Santa Ana

1851 East First Street
Ste 1600
Santa Ana, CA 92705
Phone: 714.834.1340
Fax      : 714.834.1344

Orange County Mediation

San Francisco

100 Pine Street
Ste 1950
San Francisco, CA 94111
Phone: 415.266.1242
Fax      : 415.266.1243

San Francisco Mediation

Sacramento

980 9th Street
Suite 2200
Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: 916.394.8490
Fax      : 916.394.8495

Sacramento Mediation