Multnomah County Court Contact Information & Judge's Phone Numbers

I often have issues with finding the Multnomah County Court’s Judge’s contact information. The Court’s website doesn’t make that information easy to find and it is a “pdf” document that you have to click on. As a result of my frustration, I am hoping that people that need to contact the Multnomah County Circuit Court or a Judge, or need more information can use this post to do so.

JUDICIAL DIRECTORY

Address: Multnomah County Courthouse – 1021 SW Fourth Avenue, Portland, OR 97204

WebSite: http://courts.oregon.gov/courts/Multnomah

Court/ Chambers/ JrRm Judge (Initials) /(Assignment) Phone Judicial Assistant Clerks

508/ 502/ 504 Albrecht (CAA)/(Chief Criminal), 31 503.988.3835 Vanessa DeJesus Cody Linderholm

324/ 332/ 342 Alexander (SA) , 26 503.988.5008 Susan Hull Catharine Roner‐Reiter

428/434/430 Allen (BAA)/(Family), 34 503.988.3250 Elaine Gudekunst Thomas Ybarra

328/ 322/ 342* Baggio (AMB), 38 503.988.3365 Priscila Johnson Vacant

512/ 510/ 514 Bergstrom (EB) / (DISP), 08 503.988.5029 Pam Burns Phoebe McHale

226/ 227/ 229 Bloch (EJB), 20 503.988.3954 Grace Allen Sage Ertman

308/ 306/ 304 Bottomly (LGB), 06 503.988.3404 Marie Brandis Arild Doerge

208/206/NA Bushong (SKB)/(Presiding), 21 503.988.3846 Cheri Coe Katlynn Backus / Suzanne Johnson

406/404/412 Dahlin (ELD), 24 503.988.3668 Celene Campos Vacant

716/ 714/ 718 Dailey (KMD), 25 503.988.3062 Judi Tamura Zoe Grant

216/ 212/ 216 Greenlick (MAG)/(START), 19 503.988.3214 Bruce Walker Mandie Bowers

702/706/704 Henry (PWH)/(Family; Chief Probate), 35 503.988.5010 Mary Jane Simpson Asma Khan

616/ 612/ 614 Hodson (JBH), 03 503.988.5101 Megan Nolde Erika Schmid

734/732/734A Holmes Hehn (AHH)/(Family; Lead Juvenile), 14 503.988.3052 Louis Salas

738/736/738B Lavin (AML), 07 503.988.3348 Lynda Zangerle Ryan McFarland

312/ 310/ 314 Lopez (AL), 22 503.988.3068 Jessica Morilon Elizabeth Crespo

222/ 223/ 222 Loy (MSL)/(Family), 33 503.988.3813 Kasey Lundberg Ryan Kunihiro

330/334/342* Lucero (AFL), 11 503.988.3041 Nayeli Leonard Brittany Myall

228/ 230/ 218 Marshall (CJM)(Chief Civil), 05 503.988.3274 Renee Christy / Sandra Bowman Christian Huettemeyer

544/ 546/ 542 Matarazzo (JHM), 28 503.988.3227 Tiffany Fox Sarah‐Ray Rundle

362/ 360/ 302A McGuire, (PLM)/(Family), 27 503.988.3201 Sara Larkin London Ballard

526/530/NA Moawad (HHM), 36 503.988.3165 Sonja Lockhart Joe Keenan

NA/414/NA Oden‐Orr (MOO), 23 503.988.3540 Jan Napier Judy Chuang

356/ 358/ 302A Ramras (CAR), 15 503.988.5544 Roxanne Taylor Hannah Lew

608/ 606/ 610 Rees (DFR), 09 503.988.3803 Deborah Spencer Madeline Mahugh

528/ 534/ 522 Roberts (LMR), 37 503.988.6760 Ling Lee Michael Gibson

708/712/708 Russell (SDR), 04 503.988.5047 Vicky Chalfant Mark McCarter

538/ 536/ 540 Ryan (TMR), 18 503.988.3008 Jane Franey Michael Robb

518/ 520/ 516 Silver (GFS), 12 503.988.3069 Janell Seet Erin Reel

448/ 446/ 444 Skye (KS)/(STOP), 17 503.988.3204 Shannon O’Melia Heidi Shultz

410/408/410 Souede (BS), 30 503.988.3972 Audra Henderson Alexander Li

318/ 320/ 316 Svetkey (SMS)/(Chief Family), 16 503.988.3060 Rachel Finn Nikoo Heidarzadeh

424/418/426 Torres (XYT)/(Family), 32 503.988.3029 Kayleigh Livengood Joel Lopez

450/402/422 Villa‐Smith (KLV)/(Family), 29 503.988.3985 Debby Onishi /Holly Bierbrauer Marija Boise

548/ 550&4/ 552 von Ter Stegge (VTS), 10 503.988.3045 Claudia Cougle Bonnie Calhoun

338/336/340 Waller (NGW)/ 02 503.988.2626 Kristina Brightman Kaith Sheikhly

NA/556/NA Vacant ()/(Family), 01 503.988.3078 Charli Brown Anthony Tran

NA/354/NA Vacant () (Family), 13 503.988.3986 Christine Hill Matthew Borghard

If you need legal representation in a personal injury matter or consumer issue, please call Attorney Jeremiah Ross at 503.224.1658. Ross Law PDX is happy to represent people in Multnomah County Circuit Court. Please note that this information is falid as of 10/7/19 and it may not be the most up to date information. Please consult with the Court’s website for up to date information. Please note this post could be considered Attorney Advertisement and is meant for informational purposes only.

5 Things People In Car Crashes Should Know About Dealing with the Bad Driver's Insurer:

It seems each time I meet with a new potential personal injury client they express extreme frustration and anger with the insurance companies involved in their case. Most of this anger is directed towards the other driver’s insurance company. I usually refer to the other driver that caused the motor vehicle crash as the “bad driver.”

Much of the frustration and anxiety comes from the misinformation from the insurance adjusters and the insurance industry. Insurance companies have worked hard to soften their images and gain the public’s trust with cute ad campaigns and by sponsoring events. Then when it comes time for the insurance company to do the right thing and honor the terms of the policy, they quickly switch to militant penny pinchers and will use a number of well-calculated strategies necessary to save the insurance company money. Below are some tips to assist people in dealing with the “bad driver’s” insurance company that may help alleviate frustration, anger, and anxiety from dealing with the insurance industry.

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1)  The Bad Driver’s Insurance Company is Usually Not Represented by a Lawyer Until a Lawsuit is Filed:  It is rare that an injured person would be contacted by the bad driver’s insurance company’s’ lawyer. Most likely the person calling on behalf of the bad driver’s insurance company is an insurance adjuster.  These adjusters sometimes like to think they are lawyers or even doctors and often try and act like lawyers. In reality, many adjusters have little formal relevant education and rely on internal policies and spoonfed information generated by computers to assist them with their job of paying the bare minimum on every claim. They will refer to injuries as if they are highly knowledgeable about specific injuries. However, most adjusters do not have any formal medical education and are parroting what was learned in insurance industry seminars.  This is important to remember, so you are not intimidated by them.

2) There is NO requirement that an injured person speaks to the bad driver’s insurance company adjuster or lawyer. For more information on insurance company phone calls read my blog article.  

3) You Do NOT Need to Fill Out Forms or Provide Your Social Security Number to the Bad Driver’s Insurer: The bad driver’s insurer’s goal is to get away with paying the minimum amount of money to compensate you for your injuries. That is how they stay in business. To do this they are going to look for all sorts of dirt and information that they can use to diminish the value of your claim. For example, they are going to request that you sign a “medical release” to allow them to get your medical records. They may claim they need these records to evaluate the claim. This is true, but you can get them fromi the medical provider, review them for relevant records, and then provide them directly to the bad driver’s adjuster.

By signing the “medical release” you give the adjuster the authority to get all of your medical records and sometimes your mental health counseling records. Adjusters will use these records to attempt to find other plausible explanations for your injuries or symptoms. For example, if you went to the chiropractor 2 years before the crash, the bad driver’s insurance adjuster may obtain those records to claim that the current crash is not the cause of your injured back because the records from two years ago say you had a “sore back.” They may also obtain records to make you feel uncomfortable with being involved in the claim. For example, if your medical records describe an incident from a night you wish you forgot, then that inference that other people might learn about that night may be enough for you to accept less to settle your claim. They may want a release to obtain your employment information and claim they need it to evaluate a “wage loss claim.” However, that release will allow them to have access to your entire file and the sensitive information contained therein. The Bad Driver’s Insurance company will also claim that they need your social security number to process the claim or they will get in trouble with Medicare. The medicare issue is only partially true. The SSN is key for the bad driver’s insurer to run you through their computer databases to determine if you have prior insurance claims or crashes. This is more information they can use to devalue your claim. If you may be medicare eligible then you will likely need to either fill out a medicare form regarding your identity or provide the ssn when the case resolves. I usually tell the bad driver’s insurer that they can have my client’s information when I get the settlement check. If you have questions about this call a personal injury lawyer at 503.224.1658.

4) YOU Control Your Case Against the Bad Driver, NOT the Bad Driver’s Insurer:   I regularly hear people complain that the bad driver’s insurance company is going to “close their case” if they do not communicate with the adjuster or accept an offer to settle the case against the bad driver. People get concerned that if the bad driver’s insurance company closes their file then they will not be able to be compensated for their injuries. This could not be further from the truth. Insurance adjusters speak as if many internal insurance policies are the law and will affect the claim against the bad driver. For example, they may claim you have to return their call. However, as previously mentioned that is not the law. They may also claim that if you don’t accept an offer they are going to close their file. That may be true, but you have the option of filing a lawsuit as long as it is within the statute of limitations. That will force them to reopen the file (or whatever they call that in insurance land.) The bottom line is that you control the amount of the offer you will accept, when you communicate with the bad driver’s insurance company, and if you are going to sue the bad driver if the bad driver’s insurance company won’t make a fair offer.

5) They Are Going to Play Good Cop Bad Cop and Re-Assign Adjusters: Many people get extremely frustrated because their claim with the bad driver gets bounced around from adjuster to adjuster. Usually, the bad driver’s adjusters will be nice at first and kill you with kindness. They will try and gain your trust in an effort to convince you that you should settle for pennies on the dollar. If that does not happen, they may start to ignore your calls and their tone will usually become more adversarial. Then the adjuster may try and bully you into settling. If that does not occur, the insurance company may transfer the case to a new adjuster who will try and start over with the same routine above. The new adjuster may even tell you the former adjuster was “new” or was terrible at their job. This again is an attempt to gain your trust with the new adjuster. The new adjuster may offer a little more money in an effort to resolve the claim. If the claim doesn’t resolve then they will continue the cycle and get grumpier and grumpier until they transfer the file. This is a good tactic the bad driver’s insurers use to grind you down. They want to wear you down and have you tired of telling the same thing over and over. They want to frustrate you and find that weak moment when you finally say, “OK, I’ll settle?”

PRO-TIP: HAVING A LAWYER CAN REDUCE YOUR STRESS IN DEALING WITH INSURANCE COMPANIES: As a personal injury lawyer I look at it as my job to alleviate my client’s stress related to their bodily injury claim. In doing so, I communicate with the bad driver’s insurance company and there is no need for the client to fill out their silly forms or be bounced around on the phone for hours. If you have more questions about your car crash case call Ross Law at 503.224.1658. Jeremiah Ross is a Personal Injury Lawyer that represents clients throughout Oregon, including the Portland Metro Region, Eugene, Pendleton, Hermiston, Astoria, Cannon Beach, Scappoose, Medford and places in between.

Please remember to call a lawyer and not rely solely on this article. Please also remember that rules in states may be different than Oregon. Also, please remember that this article is based on the experience of a personal injury lawyer, and not an insurance company insider or employee. This post could be considered ATTORNEY ADVERTISING.

Jeremiah Ross Named Super Lawyer for Oregon Personal Injury Cases!

Jeremiah Ross has been recognized as a “Super Lawyer” again for his outstanding work in Personal Injury Cases. Jeremiah Ross has been recognized by Super Lawyers for the past four years. Jeremiah Ross has received the following awards:

  • 2019 Oregon Super Lawyers

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Jeremiah is honored to be rated as a “Super Lawyer” in the personal injury category by his peers. According to Superlawyers, "Super Lawyers selects attorneys using a patented multiphase selection process. Peer nominations and evaluations are combined with independent research. Each candidate is evaluated on 12 indicators of peer recognition and professional achievement. Selections are made on an annual, state-by-state basis. The objective is to create a credible, comprehensive and diverse listing of outstanding attorneys that can be used as a resource for attorneys and consumers searching for legal counsel. Since Super Lawyers is intended to be used as an aid in selecting a lawyer, we limit the lawyer ratings to those who can be hired and retained by the public, i.e., lawyers in private practice and Legal Aid attorneys."

If you would like to have a free personal injury case evaluation by Jeremiah Ross call Ross Law at 503.224.1658

Ross Law Prevails in Lawsuit Against USAA after USAA's "Deplorable" Conduct!

Another win at Ross Law PDX! Last year our client was injured in a car crash. Her insurer, USAA Casualty Insurance Company, was obligated under Oregon Law and her insurance policy to pay up to $15,000.00 of her reasonable and necessary crash related medical expenses. These are commonly referred to as PIP benefits. After a few months USAA stopped paying reasonable and necessary medical bills. USAA also ignored the law that required USAA to provide written notice of the denials to our client and our office. As a result, our client was incurring medical expenses and had no idea that USAA would refuse to pay them.

Unbeknownst to our client USAA’s vendor Auto Injury Solutions (AIS) had been recommending that USAA refuse to pay the bills. What appears to have happened was USAA’s adjuster arbitrarily set a reserve (think of this as the budget for the claim) of $5,000.00 to cover our client’s medical expenses. Once our client’s bills exceeded the $5,000 reserve, it triggered AIS to conduct further detailed review on all subsequent bills. Not surprisingly AIS told USAA’s adjuster to refuse to pay all subsequent bills. USAA did as AIS informed them to do and denied the bills without reaching out to our client’s medical providers to get further clarification on her injuries and treatment, or reaching out to our office for more information. As a result, thousands of dollars of crash related medical expenses went unpaid.

We had no choice at that point and filed a lawsuit against USAA Casualty Insurance Company on our client’s behalf. Our client did not have to worry about paying the costs and attorney fees to file the lawsuit because Oregon Law allows for the insured to recover costs in attorney fees in situations like this. We filed the lawsuit in Mulnomah County Circuit Court under case number 18CV27752.

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Shortly after the lawsuit was filed USAA suddenly paid, without explanation, almost two thousand dollars of outstanding Medical bills. However, USAA refused to pay for a few visits to a chiropractor. USAA then blamed Auto Injury Solutions and our client for USAA’s failure to pay the medical expenses. Apparently USAA decided to “deny, deny, deny, and blame the other guy.” In doing so, it appeared USAA completely disregarded its’ contractual and legal obligation to pay these medical bills under the Insurance Policy and Oregon Law.

USAA then steadfastly refused to make a fair settlement offer. Instead, USAA attempted to settle the case by forcing our client to sign a confidentiality and non-disparagement agreement in exchange for payment of benefits that she was entitled to. USAA also refused to pay the full amount of the incurred costs and attorney fees. It was our belief that USAA was attempting to strip our client’s First Amendment Rights in an effort to conceal USAA’s attempts to profit from unlawfully denying active duty military, veterans, and their families insurance benefits. Our client stood firm and refused to be gagged by USAA’s corporate greed.

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We then took a deposition of USAA’s corporate representative. He gave some troubling testimony. This included claiming that he received a letter from a physician hired by AIS that recommended that he deny the bills. This is called a “file review” letter or USAA calls it a “PHAD” (physician denial letter). However, USAA never sent that letter to anyone and claims it simply disappeared. USAA’s corporate representative confirmed that this has never happened before. USAA’s corporate representative also testified that he reviewed the written notices of the denials. These are commonly referred to as “Explanation of Benefits forms,” or “EOB’s.” These were the documents that USAA was required by law to send to our client or our office but failed to. Despite testifying the EOB’s existed and were reviewed, USAA refused to produce them despite our formal legal request and various follow up letters to USAA’s lawyers.

As a result of USAA’s shenanigans we filed motions with the arbitrator to compel them to produce the information they were concealing. At this point USAA had three lawyers on the case. We also filed motions for sanctions to punish USAA for their unscrupulous and shameful litigation tactics. In April 2019, on the last business day before the hearing on the motions for sanctions, USAA suddenly “tendered” the disputed amount of the medical bills. This means that we had won and USAA would send us a check to pay the amount of the remaining disputed bills.

However, that is not the end of the story. Despite USAA stating in writing and orally that it would send the check to pay the roughly $3,700.00 of wrongfully denied bills, USAA didn’t pay. USAA also took issue with the Arbitrator awarding roughly $59,000.00 in attorney fees and costs. The arbitrator stated that USAA’s conduct was “deplorable.”

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USAA appealed the arbitrator’s decision and tried to bury the arbitrator’s written findings of facts which outline USAA’s shameful conduct. USAA was finally able to convince the court that USAA should only pay our client’s attorney fees of roughly $39,000.00. Both the Judge and the Arbitrator had serious issues with the way USAA was treating its insured and the way they chose to litigate this matter.

This was a big win for our client who was able to get thousands of dollars in medical debt wiped out. It was also a huge blow to USAA and their team of lawyers because it is clear that their unlawful PIP denials will cost them substantially if the right lawyer gets a hold of the case and forces them to explain why they are trying to screw their insured out of benefits.

If you, or someone you know, have been wrongfully wrongfully denied Personal Injury Protection benefits, or have been sent to an examination by your auto insurance company you should call an Oregon Insurance Lawyer at Ross Law PDX as soon as possible at 503.224.1658 to discuss your options. Jeremiah Ross is happy to represent clients in PIP denial cases on a contingency basis. As a Veteran, Jeremiah is happy to go to battle against USAA who hides behind a cloak of patriotism only to put profit over people.

$2,225,000.00 Medical Malpractice Jury Trial Verdict!!!!

We have been busy at Ross Law LLC. Jeremiah Ross recently teamed up with another lawyer to take on one of Oregon’s most well known medical malpractice defense law firms. Our client was a woman that fell in the hospital after knee surgery. The fall caused a mild Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI). We alleged the hospital was negligent because they were unable to prevent the fall, and could have done so relatively easily.

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The Hospital brought on a team of experienced lawyers and refused to accept responsibility for the fall. In fact, they blamed our client for the fall and then claimed that our client was malingering and not really injured.

After 2 weeks of trial, the 12 person Multnomah County Jury awarded our client $1,4500,00.00 for lost wages and future medical expenses and $755,000.00 in non-economic damages for the hell the injury has put her through. It was a fantastic result for a client who was truly an amazing person.

If you, or someone you know, were injured by a fall at a Hospital, call Jeremiah Ross at 503.224.1658 for your free phone case evaluation. Please note that case results vary and this was not a client that originated with Ross Law PDX, and Jeremiah Ross was part of a two person team of lawyers representing the client at the Jury Trial.

E-Scooters Are BACK! Six Statistics That May Keep E-Scooter Riders Safe.

Portland’s E-Scooters are back. The E-Scooters were taken off the streets over the winter, but the City of Portland recently permitted them to return. The return of the E-Scooters brings with them another convenient but dangerous mode of transportation. It is no secret that E-Scooter riders have suffered broken bones, muscle strains, head injuries, and even have been killed. A recent study of E-scooter crashes found that:

  1. 37% of riders claim they were going too fast on the scooters at the time of the crash;

  2. 24% of riders were travelling downhill while injured;

  3. 55% of riders were injured in the street;

  4. 33% were injured on the sidewalk;

  5. 16% were injured when colliding or swerving to avoid a car;

  6. 15% experienced a traumatic brain injury.

The statistics say a-lot. Speed and control seem to be large contributing factors to E-scooter crashes and injuries. Riders can likely reduce their chances of being injuries if they simply reduce their speed. The study also came to a rather obvious conclusion, “Studies have shown that bicycle riders reduce the risk of head and brain injuries by wearing a helmet,” the report stated. “Helmet use might also reduce the risk of head and brain injuries in the event of an e-scooter crash.” It is not only a good idea to wear a helmet on an E-Scooter, but it is also the law.

The study conducted by The Centers for Disease Control and the Austin Public Health Department concluded that almost half of the injured riders had a severe injury. This included bone fractures, nerve , tendon, and ligament injuries, severe bleeding , and organ damage that required an extended stay in the hospital. These types of injuries, especially fractured bones, likely happen when the rider is traveling at a higher rate of speed, so they can be avoided if the riders slow down.

The recent Austin Texas study also claimed that the there are roughly 20 injuries per 100,000 trips taken on E-Scooters. This does not seem like that many injuries, but the report acknowledges, that it “likely underestimates the prevalence” of scooter'-related injuries.

If you or someone you know has been injured on an E-Scooter please call Portland Oregon personal injury lawyer Jeremiah Ross at 503.224.1658. Ross Law PDX is happy to provide a free personal injury case evaluation to persons that were injured while riding a e-scooter. Also, please remember that Ross Law PDX is not affiliated with the City of Austin or the Center for Disease Control.

Litigation Shenanigans & the Attorney Fee Multiplier-What You Need to Know

Most consumer and personal injury lawyers represent clients based on a contingency fee agreement. That means that the attorney will not get paid unless the client receives a settlement, award, or judgment in their favor. Many firms and attorneys defending lawsuits charge by the hour. They are then paid monthly by the corporate defendant or insurance company. This can often result in defense lawyers using tactics that are meant to drain the plaintiff’s attorney’s time, money, and resources in an effort to force the plaintiff to settle or divert the plaintiff’s lawyers attention from the issues in the case. These tactics can come at a price though, and an unpublished Ninth Circuit opinion sheds some light on the remedy available to a party who is subjected to litigation shenanigans. In Beck v. Metropolitan Property and Casualty Insurance Co., No. 16-35816 (9th Cir. June 5, 2018) the Ninth Circuit approved an attorney fee multiplier of 2.0 due to the defendant’s litigation tactics. What this means is that the plaintiff’s lawyers attorney fee claim of $597,669.25 was doubled to $1,195,398.50 “due to the nature of this case and the conduct of Metropolitan and its Counsel.” Beck v. Metropolitan Prop. and Casualty Insurance Company,. 3:13-cv-00879-AC pg 44. (Dist. Or. Sept. 16, 2016)

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You are probably wondering how was the plaintiff able to force the defendant Insurance company to pay double the amount of her attorney fees. Thankfully, John Acosta, United States Magistrate Judge, drafted a 56 page order that provides a clear road map for lawyers who are seeking an attorney fee multiplier in Oregon. In this breach of insurance contract case, Judge Acosta addressed the legal standard that permitted the plaintiff to seek fees under ORS 742.061 (whether or not the plaintiff satisfied the “proof of loss requirement). Judge Acosta found the plaintiff had satisfied the proof of loss requirement under ORS 742.061. As a result the defendant was forced to pay plaintiff’s reasonable attorney fees. The question then became, What is the reasonable amount of fees?

The Judge used the ORS 20.075(1) and (2) factors to determine what was reasonable. First, the Judge rejected defendant Metropolitan’s argument that the ORS 20.075(1) factors apply only to the court’s determination whether to award fees and not the amount of fees, and not to the reasonableness of the fees.. In doing so, the court provided clear guidance that both ORS 20.075(1) and ORS 20.075(2) factors are to be used to determine the reasonable amount of attorney fees to award.

The Court then delved into the factors under ORS 20.075(1). The court evaluated the parties’ respective pre-litigation conduct and did not look kindly at Metropolitan’s attempts to resolve the case on unilaterally established terms. The court also looked at the objective reasonableness of the claims and defenses asserted by the parties under ORS 20.075(1)(b). In addressing that factor the court acknowledged that the case was a simple breach of contract case. However, the defense asserted unreasonable defenses in its answer, and advanced unreasonable arguments to use as the equivalent of defenses. For example the defense asserted a merit-less “Fraud” defense. This is a common defense tactic in consumer cases, and the court did not take kindly to it. The Court then delved into the various other ORS 20.075(1) factors and found they either weighed in plaintiff’s favor or they did not apply.

The court then turned to the ORS 20.075(2) factors. The court did a fantastic job concisely addressing each of the numerous factors. In doing so, the court addressed the prevailing market rates for legal services in the relevant community. In this case the plaintiff’s attorneys submitted expert declarations as expert evidence of the plaintiff’s attorneys’ skill and experience in insurance law and to support the hourly rates she requested. The court used the expert opinions and the 2017 Oregon State Bar Economic Survey to assist in establishing the attorneys’ respective hourly rates.

The court also addressed whether the fee is fixed or contingent factor under ORS 20.075(2)(h). The plaintiff’s lawyer initially worked under an hourly fee and then transferred to a contingency fee. The Beck case is similar to many consumer cases, because the defense used tactics which made it impossible for the plaintiff to pay the lawyer an hourly rate. However, the firm representing Ms. Beck continued to be able to do so under a contingency fee agreement. The court noted that the defense’s litigation strategy increased the risk to Beck’s attorneys that they might not be fully compensated for their time, and that factor weighed in favor of an attorney fee award.

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The court then addressed the attorney fee multiplier. The court noted, “Oregon law permits an enhancement of fees when it is supported by the facts and circumstances of the case. See Griffin v. TriMet, 112 Or. App. 575, 585 (1992) aff’d in part and rev’d in part, 318 Or. 500 (1994) (approving trial court award of 2.0 multiplier).” The court then spent significant time addressing the facts leading up to the litigation and the defense’s litigation tactics. The court noted that the defense’s efforts to attempt to obtain irrelevant evidence through the discovery process, using theories that lacked any relevance, and the defenses disorganized or deliberately untimely approach to raising various issues resulted in the plaintiff incurring fees for having to respond to both the substance of the issues and their “procedural infirmity.”

However, the court limited the 2.0 multiplier to the fees the plaintiff only incurred during the litigation. The court concluded that pre-litigation fees that were incurred were not subject to the multiplier because the defense’s litigation counsel played no role in the parties’ negotiations.

Judge Acosta did a magnificent job in providing a road map and guidance for future litigants facing a defendant who desires to engage in litigation shenanigans in a fee shifting case. Hopefully the opinion will have a deterrent effect and help litigants combat litigation shenanigans. The opinion is also a fantastic example of the various issues a fee petition should address and the arguments a fee seeking party may face. Lastly, the opinion is an excellent example of the facts and factors the court looks to when deciding if a fee multiplier is appropriate in a particular case.

If you are having an issue with an insurance company or have questions about attorney fees, call Jeremiah Ross at 503.224.1658. Ross Law PDX represents people in various claims against their insurance companies Ross LAW PDX is happy to represent Oregonians in Personal Injury Protection Insurance disputes, and claims for Uninsured Motorist Benefits and Under-insured Motorist benefits. Please remember the law is constantly changing and to not solely rely on this post.


6 Fatal Traffic Crashes In 4 Days in Portland! WTH Portland Drivers?

SIX fatal traffic crashes have occurred in the past FOUR DAYS in Portland Oregon! As an Oregon wrongful death and personal injury lawyer this is extraordinarily alarming. Each and every one of these heartbreaking deaths were likely preventable if people used common sense and simply followed the law while they were driving. Portland Police Bureau Chief Outlaw is warning, “Drivers [to] slow down, don’t drive impaired/distracted. Bikes and peds use caution-don’t assume drivers see you.”

Chief Outlaw also warned that the PPB is going to stepping up traffic enforcement. Portland drivers take note that you may be ticketed for what you perceive as a minor traffic violation (driving 10 miles over the speed limit, rolling through a stop sign, failing to stop while a pedestrian is waiting at a cross walk.) Hopefully increased enforcement will work to change Portland driving behavior.

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Law enforcement are not the only folks out there trying to change Portland’s driver’s behavior. Here at Ross Law, we believe that it is our duty to use the civil justice system make our community a safer place by holding wrongdoers accountable and hopefully deterring people from driving negligently, carelessly, or recklessly. We do this by filing lawsuits against the bad drivers that injure our clients. This will hopefully force the bad driver, their family, and their friends to change their driving behavior. We know that it is not easy to be sued and explain your actions that injured or killed someone. We use the civil justice process to attempt to force bad drivers that injure our clients to own up to what they did, and be held responsible by having to explain their actions, and admit they were at fault. Additionally, their insurer will have to pay to compensate the person they injured. We wholeheartedly agree with Chief Outlaw that drivers need to slow down, don’t drive impaired or distracted, and cyclist and pedestrians should be cautious on the roads.

If you or someone you know have been injured or killed in a Oregon motor vehicle crash, call Jeremiah Ross at 503.224.1658. Call Ross Law for your free personal injury case evaluation. We proudly represent people injured in car crashes, bicycle crashes, and pedestrians that were struck by a vehicle.