Shernoff Bidart Echeverria Bentley LLP is a premier law firm handling personal injury and insurance bad faith matters for clients throughout California.
In the last two years, numerous attorneys at the firm have been recognized by Super Lawyers, Best Lawyers, Chambers and other attorney-ranking publications as being at the top of their field. In 2012, the firm had three of the top 100 verdicts in California, according to Verdict Search, and as a result, the firm’s lawyers were honored by many legal organizations for the accomplishments.
The firm is known for its results-oriented approach to representing clients and for obtaining some of the largest jury verdicts and settlements in the country. For example:
• William M. Shernoff obtained a $19 million jury verdict for a paraplegic Marine whose insurance company overruled his treating doctor on the medical necessity of his 109-day hospital stay.
• Michael J. Bidart won a $120 million jury verdict against an HMO (the largest verdict against an HMO in history) over its refusal to pay for care recommended by the health plan’s own physicians.
• Ricardo Echeverria obtained a $25.7 million jury verdict for a catastrophically injured youth.
• Gregory L. Bentley obtained a $31.5 million jury verdict on behalf of a catastrophically injured Deputy District Attorney.
Founding partner William Shernoff was a pioneer in the area of bad faith insurance litigation. In 1979, Shernoff set the legal precedent that established bad-faith law and later co-authored a definitive treatise on the topic, "Insurance Bad Faith Litigation."
As specialists in insurance bad faith, SBEB maximizes recovery on behalf of their clients by obtaining settlements and verdicts in excess of the adverse party’s insurance policy limits. Excess results just this year alone include:
• $15 million recovered on a $15,000 policy
• $10 million recovered on a $300,000 policy
• $4 million recovered on a $25,000 policy
• $2.25 million recovered on a $50,000 policy
• $15 million jury verdict on a $1 million policy
Since the firm's inception, SBEB has stood toe-to-toe against big insurance companies on behalf of consumers. The results speak for themselves.
William M. Shernoff
William M. Shernoff is the founding partner of Shernoff Bidart Echeverria Bentley LLP. A longtime consumer advocate, Shernoff has made a career out of representing insurance consumers in their cases against insurance companies. In 1979, he persuaded the California Supreme Court to establish new case law that permits plaintiffs to sue insurance companies for bad faith, seeking both compensatory and punitive damages when those companies unreasonably handle a policyholder’s claim (Egan v. Mutual of Omaha). Often called the “pioneer” of bad faith law, Shernoff is a nationally recognized authority in the field, with more than 35 years of experience representing individual and business insurance consumers.
Michael J. Bidart
A preeminent consumer attorney whose impact on our health care system has been major, senior partner Michael J. Bidart leads the firm’s HMO litigation and property/casualty departments. Since bringing his expertise to the firm in 1986, Bidart has developed the firm’s health insurance practice by successfully prosecuting bad faith disputes against insurers and HMOs. His inexhaustible efforts were showcased in 1999 with a landmark $120.5 million verdict against Aetna over its refusal to pay for care recommended by the health plan’s own physicians (Goodrich v. Aetna). It was the largest jury verdict ever rendered againstan HMO.
Ricardo Echeverria is a trial attorney with the firm, where he handles both insurance bad faith and catastrophic personal injury cases. Echeverria’s trial record is distinguished by impressive victories, including a $25.7 million (net) jury verdict in a catastrophic personal injury case (Elkins v. Murchison); a $15 million jury verdict in a wrongful death case involving a mother of two killed in a hit-and-run accident (Paregien v. Perez d.b.a. E&M Trucking); a $7.2 million unanimous jury verdict against an insurance company for its failure to settle a claim within policy limits on behalf of its insured in Minnesota Federal Court (George Martin Co. v. Royal Insurance); a $5.1 million jury verdict against an insurance company for low-balling victims of the October 2003 California Wildfires (Stone v. Fidelity National); as well as many other seven-figure jury verdicts and settlements.
Gregory L. Bentley
Gregory L. Bentley is a trial attorney specializing in the representation of consumers on a wide variety of cases, including insurance bad faith and catastrophic personal injury and wrongful death matters. He has been recognized as a Super Lawyer by Los Angeles Magazine from 2010-2013. Bentley is a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates, serving on the executive committee of the San Bernardino/Riverside Chapter. He has been recognized as a Top 100 Trial Lawyer in the State of California by the National Trial Lawyers Association, was honored as the 2012 Trial Lawyer of the Year by the Consumer Attorneys of the Inland Empire, and was a finalist in 2012 for the Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles Trial Lawyer of the Year Award. In 2012, he obtained a $31.5 million verdict on a catastrophic injury case and a $2.3 million verdict on behalf of a severely injured police officer.
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