ROBERT M. BENNETT, ESQ.

  • Available in Orange County, Los Angeles, All of California, Nationwide
  • Available for Mediation, Arbitration, and Private Judging assignments

Introduction

After 32 years of legal practice representing both plaintiffs and defendants in California, New York, and New England with significant high exposure jury trials, Rob Bennett left litigation to commit himself full time to serving as a Neutral. His skillful approach to mediation employs his considerable knowledge and insight gained not only from 32 years practicing law, but also from his 12 years as an insurance executive managing both the bad faith departments and severe injury claims divisions of two major insurance carriers. Honored as a "master negotiator" by his peers, Rob has been a frequent lecturer on Bad Faith Claims on both sides of the Bar. He has used his creative approach to resolve cases involving complex issues, multi-party conflicts with difficult theories and overlapping coverage layers as well as concluding groundbreaking bad faith claims directed against insurance companies. Several plaintiffs' counsel remarked that Rob's knowledge of the insurance industry and its inner workings were the key to bringing all the parties together. One attorney said "from doctors to contractors, Rob always related extremely well with my clients. He could speak their language."

Specialties

Hobbies & Interests

In his spare time, Rob is an international sports venue consultant who has worked for the Rose Bowl Parade and Game for over 30 years, as well as the Los Angeles Olympics and World Cup, the Beijing Olympics, and served the negotiating team that brought Formula One Racing to Shanghai China in 2004. He is an avid music enthusiast and film buff. Rob speaks Mandarin Chinese and enjoys travel, winter sports and restoring vintage sports cars.

Website

http://www.rmbennettglobalmediation.com

Testimonials

Utilized his litigation experience / knowledge to help parties recognize strength, and weaknesses in real world way.
- Attorney on a personal injury auto dispute

Mr. Bennett was well-prepared and really worked both sides in a fair and meaningful manner. The case settled.
- Attorney, Orange County, California

He had a perfect manner in the case, so comfortable for defendant's attorney, plaintiff's attorney, the 2 plaintiffs and the attorney claim rep
- An attorney on a legally complex, highly emotional case

This is now the fourth case in which I have been involved in which Mr. Bennett has acted as mediator. In every instance he has been well prepared, knowledgeable of the facts and legal issues, and very helpful in pushing the cases toward settlement.
- Attorney on a Real Property Breach of Contract Dispute

Robert Bennett did a masterful job mediating our case. I hope to work with him soon.
- Attorney, Manhattan Beach, California

Experience Summary

Legal Career

  • Special Claims Counsel for the Automobile Club (1998-12)
  • Partner, Richardson, Bambrick, Cermak & Bennett, Interinsurance Exchange (1991-98)
  • Partner, Rogers, Bennett, & Henderson, Counsel to St. Paul Fire and Marine (1989-91)
  • Counsel to the U.S. Government, Federal Banking Department of the FDIC (1988-89)
  • Established Bennett & Assoc., Consumer Lawyers, L.A. & Orange Counties (1985-88)
  • Law Firm of Robert M. Bennett, New York, New England, California, Plaintiff Personal Injury and Business Law (1980-85)
  • Plaintiffs litigation counsel, Law firm of Dudley K. Wright, Santa Ana, CA (1979-80)
  • Professor of Law, Northrop University of Los Angeles (1981-87)

Education & Professional Affiliations

  • Member California, New York, Vermont, Federal District & U.S. Supreme Court Bars
  • Juris. Doctorate, Pepperdine University (1979)
  • B. A., University of California Los Angeles (1976)
  • Los Angeles County Superior Court Certified Mediator/ADR Panel
  • Member, Consumer Attorneys of California; Orange County & LA County Bar Assoc.
  • Pepperdine Strauss Institute Attendee "Mediation Goes Mainstream" Conference, 2002; Advanced Negotiation Skills and Cultural Mediation Strategies, 2008
  • 28 year voting member, NARAS Recording Academy for the Grammy Awards
  • Member Beijing Mediators Association, Peoples Republic of China

Achievements & Awards

  • Design and deliver advanced Bad Faith, Ethics, Insurance Coverage, and Negotiations Seminars throughout the U.S.
  • National Panelist on the Lorman Bad Faith Seminars since 2007
  • Pepperdine Strauss Institute Panelist/Lecturer (2005 & 2008)
  • Past President of the California Association of House Counsel (1993-95)
  • Named Distinguished Faculty Member, Northrop University College of Law (1984-88)
  • Distinguished member award over twenty years' service to the NARAS Recording Academy

Legal Experience

  • Complex Litigation including Real Estate, Banking and Bankruptcy, Securities
  • Personal Injury
  • Insurance Coverage and Bad Faith
  • Medical and Professional Malpractice
  • Product Liability
  • Business Disputes, Consumer Class Action
  • Sports and Entertainment Contracts
  • Automobile Lemon Law and Sales Disputes, Dealership Disputes

Representative Case Information

Recent Representative Cases

Business/Commercial

A.D.A Act

  • Slip and fall in an arena involving numerous violations of ADA standards. Failure to access handrails in the restroom resulted in plaintiff injuries requiring significant treatment. Dispute settled during the second mediation session.
  • Plaintiff fell and sustained injuries in an apartment complex. Stairway did not meet current handrail and step rail measurement standards which should have been upgraded during recent refurbishments which were not. Dispute resolved in mediation.

Contractual

  • Complex Pensions/Trust case triggering conflicting decedent's rights issues.
  • Breach of finance contracts and fraud issues.
  • Injunctive relief case on breach of business anti competition clauses.
  • Crowd funding and investment enterprises corp versus former employee for alienation of business etc. Cross actions for wrongful termination and status rating under labor code.

Construction

Construction Breach Of Contract

  • Home addition case with construction defect/architectural malpractice crossover issues.

Employment

Wage and Hour

  • Wage and hour federal court case national Au Pair program sponsored under federal court cultural exchange act. Improper treatment of employees and conspiracy to fix wages. Crossover insurance coverage issues involved.

Insurance

Bad Faith

  • Declination of Coverage, Loss of Business premises use and Loss of Income, Bad Faith and Coverage issues.
  • Large exposure open policy case vs major carrier. Opportunity to settle was made clear.
  • Complex Bad Faith and Business interruption case with flood loss and wrongful declinations by 2 carriers.
  • Wrongful denial of Homeowners claim for flood loss and land movement damages.
  • Complex bad faith case with workers comp/coverage and other aspects of bad faith at play. Seven year case with long delays.

Coverage

  • Significant coverage dispute in liability insurance policy for major public sports venue involving Bad Faith, Breach of the duty to defend as well as policy interpretations on employment coverage, and disability act violations.

Property Damage

  • Complex property damage and loss of use case with coverage issues and out of state defendant. Charter Bus lost from fleet due to damage from auto versus bus.

Subrogation

  • Product liability case with multiple parties; failed kitchen appliance with installer and product issues in addition to coverage issues.

Professional Malpractice

Medical Malpractice

  • Medical malpractice by Acupuncturist. Pneumothorax injury, corrective hospitalization. Case fully resolved.

Prof Malpractice Accounting

  • Law Firm alleges damage from accountant errors and omissions.

Real Estate

Breach Of Contract

  • Contentious commercial property purchase, sophisticated and difficult plaintiff and developer and association issues.
  • Residential Real Estate buyer-Seller dispute and Transfer Disclosure issues Case.

Property Damage

  • Major contract dispute with cross actions on a Farm well project that under-performed.

Real Property

  • Real Estate partnership involving experienced partner fraud and loans against equity before value of property collapsed. Fraud and contract issues.

Warranty of Habitability

  • Very complex Landlord Tenant matter. Residential with habitability issues and wrongful eviction.

Tort

Civil Rights

  • Detainee of Police Department alleging civil rights violations.

General Negligence

  • Significant passenger injuries on common carrier.

Mass Torts

  • Fireworks malfunction with resulting personal injuries and hearing loss. Municipality and manufacturer defendants. Multiple plaintiffs with varying degrees of injury.

Personal Injury

  • Slip and fall at Airport restaurant, Coverage and Liability problems.
  • Aggravated Dog Bite with neighbor conflict issues and disputes overlay.

PI Auto

  • Coverage. Declined claim over issue of uninsured vehicle, direct carrier lawsuit.
  • Intra family business contract dispute, very emotionally contentious with statute of frauds hurdles and waiver-estoppel issues.
  • Lane splitting Harley Davidson with complex comparative negligence issues and serious injuries.
  • Open policy coverage issue on a significant injury case. Issues involved both the bodily injury and the coverage and open policy exposure.
  • Catastrophic Injury Case involving a fall from a Public Transit bus. Elderly Plaintiff had objective injuries but also complex overlay of pre-existing conditions.
  • Wrongful death, and multiple heirs as claimants. Settlement crafted with creative dispensing of recovery including putative spouse and real spouse (two wives) of decedent.
  • Wrongful death. Causes of action versus City and County for defective roadway. Seven figure settlement reached.
  • Delivery truck struck bicyclist. Catastrophic injuries with lifetime disabilities. Liability arguments on vehicle, cyclist, and obstructive signage at the shopping center.

Premises Liability

  • Workers injuries on unsafe business premises with crossover coverage issues.
  • Defects in Apartment complex due to errors and or deferred maintenance.
  • Premises Mold Case with injuries/Illness. Rental Property Mold-Fungal Contamination case.
  • A guest at a restaurant suffered a serious hand injury in which their finger was severed by entertainment equipment on the premises.
  • Store display by major national retailer. Liability for defective set up and maintenance of display, personal injuries to customer.
  • Disability ADA issues overlaying a premises liability case at a big box home store. Obvious pre-existing medical conditions and new objective injuries.
  • Fall at a construction site. Complex easements from city, to contractor and indemnity agreements by contractor and landowners.

Product Liability

  • Serious product liability case involving a kitchen appliance causing hand injury with surgeries and severe impact to plaintiff. Causation and engineering issues. Case settled during mediation.
  • Three party premises liability and subrogation matter involving product liability leading to flooding and damage to neighboring residence.

Wrongful Death

  • Commercial Defendants vs. Family survivors of a multiple death case all same family, minor survivors. 3 day case.
  • Wrongful death. City engineering road construction defects. Conflicting multi-party coverage issues with significant exposure.
  • Multi-party, three car accident, single death case, with 2 additional significant injuries. UIM policy to mediate in order to avoid a binding result. Difficult medical/coverage issues. Case resolved in mediation.
  • Wrongful death, motor vehicle accident-course and scope school district employee. Insurance coverage issues involved. Fully resolved at mediation.
  • Wrongful death of pedestrian, combined liability of vehicle driver and government entity for failure to repair lighting and design flaws.

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