Ric Gass offers a candid glimpse into the world of a top trial lawyer in the 2014 edition of Wisconsin Super Lawyers Magazine. Click below to read the full Q&A:
Chambers and Partners is one of the world’s leading guides to lawyers and law firms. The 2014 rankings were just released, and Gass Weber Mullins again did very well.
Ralph Weber represented Fairbank Farms in a jury trial in Portland, Maine. The case arose out of the 2009 N.E. outbreak in which 30 people were infected by E. coli O157:H7. The 8-person Federal Court jury found unanimously that defendant Greater Omaha Packing Co. sold contaminated beef trim that sickened the 5-year-old plaintiff. Thus, Fairbank Farms was entitled to full indemnity from GOPAC.
This month’s issue of Wisconsin Lawyer magazine features two articles written by Gass Weber Mullins lawyers. Beth Hanan, who focuses on appellate work, identifies nine of the most significant decisions from the Wisconsin Supreme Court’s 2013-13 term. Read her article here. For the federal court take, Michael Brennan’s article offers detailed analysis of eight significant Wisconsin federal court decisions interpreting Wisconsin law.
Brennan and Hanan also share some personal insights in Wisconsin Lawyer’s Meet Our Contributors section, here.
Watch this video of Beth Hanan discussing the high court’s recent term, workload and several of the highlighted cases.
Chambers & Partners, an internationally renowned research and ranking firm, has once again identified Gass Weber Mullins as one of Wisconsin’s preeminent litigation firms in the Chambers 2013 law firm guide.
Attorneys Ric Gass and Mike Brennan of Gass Weber Mullins recently returned from a six-week trial in the historic Newark courtroom where the movie Presumed Innocent was filmed. The wrongful death lawsuit brought against Newark Public Schools arose from an assault and triple-murder carried out by members of one of America’s most notorious street gangs, MS-13 (“Mara Salvatrucha”).
The victims – four college students – were brutally attacked after entering a schoolyard through a gate that had been inadvertently left unlocked. The plaintiffs asserted that a series of property defects, including the unlocked gate and Newark’s high crime rate, rendered the schoolyard in a “dangerous condition.”
Gass and Brennan, on behalf of their client, countered that the criminal attackers’ actions, not those of the school district, were the proximate cause of plaintiffs’ injuries.
The complex litigation involved more than 100 potential witnesses, including detectives, EMTs, neighbors, and school district supervisory personnel. Numerous experts also testified on a range of topics including premise security, gang violence, psychiatric and medical conditions, and damages.
Over the next six weeks the plaintiffs’ demand kept dropping until just before closing arguments when plaintiffs accepted the offer made by GWM’s client at the opening of trial, plus a payment (substantially exceeding that offered by GWM’s client) by the co-defendant State of New Jersey, which had taken over the Newark Public Schools in the mid-1990′s.
It was a good start to what looks to be a busy year for Gass. This was the first of five catastrophic injury cases his team is scheduled to try this year. Gass has not lost a case in eight years.
In a national case of first impression, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals recently affirmed a trial court decision that lawyers’ use of a competitor’s name as a search term in sponsored link advertising does not violate Wisconsin’s right of privacy statute. The Court affirmed a summary judgment dismissal of the complaint brought against the Cannon & Dunphy law firm, represented by J. Ric Gass of Gass Weber Mullins.
Commented Gass, “We applaud the court’s decision, which effectively brings attorney advertising into the modern era. The decision is win-win-win; a win for our client’s ability to effectively compete in an open marketplace; a win for the legal profession in terms of its ability to communicate with prospective clients; and a win for consumers of legal services, who now are better able to make an informed decision about their choice of lawyer.” For further discussion on this case, please see here.
Clients turn to Mr. Gass for the handling of major risk litigation of all kinds, including intellectual property. Mr. Gass has been elected to the status of Fellow by his peers in the trial bar in numerous legal honorary societies such as The American College of Trial Lawyers and has served as president to numerous national legal organizations.
Gass Weber Mullins was just named one of the top 10 boutique law firms in the country by The National Law Journal. The firm includes former in-house corporate counsel, nationally renowned litigators and highly regarded former trial judges. The firm handles a broad range of civil litigation including commercial disputes, product liability, catastrophic injuries, bad faith, construction lawsuits, food safety and life, health and disability litigation, as well as appellate work.
We are pleased to announce that Gass Weber Mullins was recently named one of the top ten litigation boutique law firms in the country by The National Law Journal. In releasing its annual list, the publication noted: “They may be small, but they command attention. The 10 law firms on our Litigation Boutiques Hot List…demonstrate that when it comes to high-stakes cases, it’s all about skill, not size. These are the firms important clients turn to for state-of-the-art advocacy in bet-the-company cases.” We are proud to be included on this elite list and look forward to continuing to serve clients with their ever-more complex litigation challenges.
This month’s Of Counsel magazine features an in-depth interview (here) with Gass Weber Mullins’ attorney and partner Ric Gass. The article’s introduction discusses the civility with which Gass treats opposing counsel and discusses the more than 300 trials he has brought to verdict. The interview provides an informative discussion on Gass’s personal history and the unique path he took to becoming a lawyer. It also examines the principles behind Gass Weber Mullins winning formula, including a recent run of ten consecutive trial wins, and the upside down pyramid approach the firm uses to maximize client satisfaction.
The Winter 2012 edition of the Wisconsin Civil Trial Journal, published by the Wisconsin Defense Counsel, features an article written by attorney Daniel J. Kennedy that details the history and evolution of Wisconsin’s Pollution Exclusion Jurisprudence. The article provides wide-ranging and valuable insight into the ramifications of the gradually expanding scope of substances and situations to which standard pollution exclusions apply. Kennedy’s analysis examines both historical and contemporary court decisions in order to provide clues to the likely future direction of the courts.
Dan Kennedy is a 2004 graduate of the University of Illinois College of Law. His practice encompasses a wide variety of civil litigation matters, including products liability, professional negligence, insurance coverage and personal injury defense.