We Fight Against Injustice – Wherever It May Arise


Published Decisions


Schonbrun Seplow Harris Hoffman & Zeldes, LLP wins class action appeal on behalf of nursing staff at California psychiatric hospitals​.

In a published decision issued on October 16, 2015, the California Court of Appeal reversed a lower court ruling, which had denied a motion for class certification on behalf of nursing staff at two Southern California psychiatric hospitals. The Court of Appeal, in the case of Valerie Alberts, et al. v. Aurora Behavioral Health Care, et al., No. B248748, found that the plaintiffs had presented numerous issues common to the proposed class of nurses and mental health workers who allege that hospital policies and practices denied them meal and rest breaks, and overtime compensation. The plaintiffs presented evidence that the hospitals failed to provide sufficient staffing and coverage to allow nursing staff to take their legally required breaks and that staff were pressured to work “off the clock” so as not to sacrifice patient safety.

As the Court stated: “The hospital’s policies, as understood through the prism of plaintiffs’ theory, effectively and unfairly leverage a reasonable nurse’s ethical obligations, making missed break mandatory, not voluntary. A reasonable/ethical nurse under such circumstances would not risk the life or health of his/her patient suffering from a psychiatric disorder in order to take a mandated meal or rest break.”

Michael D. Seplow of Schonbrun Seplow Harris Hoffman & Zeldes, LLP, lead counsel for the plaintiffs, argued the case before the Court of Appeal.

Click here for a copy of the Court of Appeal’s published and precedent-setting decision.

Charlebois v. Angels Baseball
Charlebois v. Angels Baseball, Case No. SACV 10-0853 DOC(ANx), where the court stated about Schonbrun Seplow Harris Hoffman & Zeldes, LLP “Moreover, Class Counsel’s firm reputation is prestigious and thus on par with its comparator firms. Class counsel’s firm is a major player in litigating cutting-edge international human rights cases, as exemplified by law partner Paul Hoffman’s February 2012 argument before the U.S. Supreme Court in Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum, Case No.1 0-1491. One of the members of Class Counsel has been named by the Daily Journal among the Top 50 Employment Lawyers in the State of California, inclusive of lawyers from top international law firms, for three years in a row.”

Xue Lu et al. v. the United States of America
Xue Lu et al. v. the United States of America, 621 F.3d 944 (9th Cir. 2010) reversing dismissal of the case against the United States of America while holding an asylum officer who was acting in the course and scope of employment when he demanded sexual favors and money in return for approving asylum applications.

Doe I V. Unocal Corp.

Dalkilic Vs. Titan Corp.

Daily Journal Verdicts And Settlements

Doe I V. Unocal Corp.
On September 18, 2002, the 9th Circuit ruled for the plaintiffs in the Doe v Unocal case, finding that they produced enough evidence to go to trial on their claims that Unocal aided and abetted the human rights crimes committed against them by the Burmese military in connection with a natural gas pipeline project in Burma. All of the plaintiffs are now living in refugee camps in Thailand. The decision reversed a summary judgment granted by District Judge Lew in September 2000. A trial on the plaintiffs’ state law claims is scheduled for February 4, 2003, before Judge Victoria Chaney in Los Angeles Superior Court.

Mary Sanders Lee V. City Of Los Angeles
25 F.3d 668 (9th Cir. 2001)

People V. Brown
100 Cal. Rptr 2d 211 (2000)

Maktab Tarighe Oveyssi Shah Maghsoudi, Inc. V. Kianfar
179 F.3d 1244 (9th Cir. 1999)

Reno V. Arab-American Anti-Discrimination Committee
119 S.Ct. 136 (1999)

United States V. Messer
197 F. 3d. 330 (9th Cir 1999)

United States V. Phillips
174 F.3d 1074 (9th Cir. 1999)

Martinez V. City Of Los Angeles
141 F.3d 1373 (9th Cir. 1998)

Alvarez-Machain V. United States
107 F.3d 696 (9th Cir. 1997)

Del Rio V. Jetton
55 Cal. App. 4th 30 (1997)

Doe V. Unocal
963 F.Supp. 880 (C.D. Cal. 1997)

Abebe-Jira V. Negewo
72 F.3d 844 (11th Cir. 1996)

Hilao V. Estate Of Marcos
103 F.3d 789 (9th Cir. 1996)

City Of Huntington Park V. Superior Court, 34 Cal. App. 4th 1293 (1995)

Sandin V. Conner
515 U.S. 472 (1995)

Standing Committee V. Yagman 55 F.3d 1430 (9th Cir. 1995)

Chism V. County Of San Bernardino
159 F.R.D. 531 (C.D. Cal. 1994)

Johnson V. County Of Los Angeles
865 F. Supp. 1430 (C.D. Cal. 1994)

Wayne Mogilefsky V. The Superior Court Of Los Angeles County, Silver Pictures, et al., Real Parties in Interest
20 Cal.App.4th 1409 (1993)

Reno V. Flores
507 U.S. 292 (1993)

People V. Mitcham
1 Cal. 4th 1027 (1992)

Siderman V. Republic of Argentina
965 F.2d 699 (9th Cir. 1992)

United States V. Alvarez-Machain
504 U.S. 655 (1992)

American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee v. Thornburgh
970 F.2d 501 (9th Cir. 1991)

Wilkinson V. United States
774 F. Supp. 1360 (N.D. Ga 1991)

American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee V. Meese
714 F. Supp 1060 (C.D. Cal. 1989)

McCarthy V. Fletcher
207 Cal. App. 3d 130 (1989)

United States V. Aguilar
871 F.2d 1436 (9th Cir. 1989)

Chalk V. United States District Court
840 F.2d 701 (9th Cir. 1988)

Board of Directors Of Rotary Int’l V. Rotary Club of Duarte
481 U.S. 537 (1987)

Ketchens V. Reiner
194 Cal. App. 3d 470 (1987)

Rogan V. City Of Los Angeles
668 F. Supp 1384 (C.D. Cal. 1987)

Rubin V. City Of Los Angeles
190 Cal. App. 3d 560 (1987)

San Francisco Arts & Athletics, Inc. v. U.S. Olympic Committee
483 U.S. 522 (1987)

Thomas V. Atascadero Unified School District
662 F. Supp 376 (C.D. Cal. 1987)

Wilkinson V. FBI
633 F. Supp 336 (C.D. Cal. 1986)

Coalition Against Police Abuse V. Superior Court
170 Cal. App. 3d 888 (1985)

Handel V. Artukovic
601 F. Supp 1421 (C.D. Cal. 1985)

Levine V. United States District Court
775 F.2d 1054 (9th Cir. 1985)

Martin V. International Olympic Committee
740 F.2d 670 (9th Cir. 1984)

Wilkinson V. FBI
99 F.R.D. 148 (C.D. Cal. 1983)

Crawford V. Board Of Education
458 U.S. 527 (1982)