Laurence Berman is an experienced and effective trial lawyer with over thirty years of experience. His practice includes a wide range of complex commercial litigation matters with an emphasis on intellectual property litigation, labor and employment litigation, attorney’s fees disputes, business torts litigation and insurance coverage issues. He has served as trial counsel in over 40 trials and arbitrations and has represented a wide variety of clients across several industry sectors.
Mr. Berman has extensive trial experience in federal and state courts, arbitrations and administrative proceedings. These matters include:
- Defended interior design company against trademark and related claims brought by the Rothschild family and obtained a complete dismissal with prejudice of all claims with no money paid by the client and without sacrifice of any intellectual property rights. Motion for attorney’s fees pending. Baron Philippe de Rothschild SA v. Rothschild Productions (C.D.Cal. 12-CV-3884-MMM-JCX.)
- Prevailed in a three and a half week breach of contract and nuisance jury trial and obtained a jury verdict consisting of $2 million in compensatory damages and $4 million in punitive damages. Successfully defended the judgment in three appeals and obtained 100% of the attorney’s fees sought in trial and post-trial proceedings, ultimately recovering over $9,900,000 after ten years of litigation. Goldstein v. Beck (L.A.S.C. BC261307 and SC085201.)
- Defended the largest provider of midway entertainment in North America in a lawsuit filed by the State of Michigan that sought a million dollars in damages against client. Countersued the State of Michigan and ultimately obtained a complete dismissal of the State’s case as well as monetary damages from the State and reinstatement of the client’s contractual rights, and also successfully moved to compel the deposition of the Governor of the State of Michigan, becoming one of the only attorneys in the history of the United States to obtain a court order commanding a sitting governor to be deposed. North American Midway Entertainment v. State of Michigan (Ingham County, Michigan, 09-138-MK).
- After defeating a preliminary injunction, defended a publicly traded company against misappropriation of trade secrets claims brought by a multinational conglomerate related to call-center activities in the Philippines, and obtained a complete dismissal with prejudice and full release of the client with no money paid by the client after almost four years of litigation. Aegis USA, Inc. v. TeleTech Holdings (L.A.S.C. BC413423.)
- Served as lead counsel for one of the world’s largest food manufacturing companies which was sued in state court in Texas for trade secret misappropriation, interference with contract and related claims. Plaintiff requested more than $330 million in damages. After more than two weeks of trial, the jury awarded approximately $1 million, which was 10% of defendant’s pre-trial settlement offer. Americana Juice Imports, Inc. v. Nestle USA (Hidalgo County, Texas, C-2012-99-B1)
- Defended design company that was sued for misappropriation of trade secrets and confidential information. Plaintiff requested more than $2 million in damages. After a two week jury trial, the jury awarded just $47 thousand in damages. GMPC v. Walker (L.A.S.C. SC070564)
- Won arbitration involving shareholder dispute of closely held corporation by successfully petitioning to restore shareholder rights of an individual shareholder and secured multi-million dollar settlement for shareholder. Beck v. Mausner (L.A.S.C. LC089216)
- Secured settlement in excess of $9 million the day before trial in an action for trademark infringement and related claims against the largest publicly traded health care company in the country. (Confidential Settlement)
- Defeated a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction in an action for trade secret misappropriation and unfair competition involving software and other trade secrets used to provide customer care in the automotive business. Secured a dismissal with prejudice of the entire action with no payment by client. Autobytel Inc. v. Newgen Results Corporation (O.C.S.C. 07CC02178)
- Secured a mid-six-figure settlement in a copyright and trademark infringement action related to pop-up displays used for a limited time period at grocery stores where the infringement occurred for a limited period of time, there was no actual damage, de minimis profits earned by the defendants, and all of the infringing products had been removed. Academy of Motion Pictures v. Albertson’s Inc., et al. (C.D.Cal. Case No. CV -01386-ABC-CW)
- Defended a publicly traded company against alter ego and fraudulent conveyance claims brought in a breach of lease case and obtained a favorable settlement – less than 10% of the damages initially sought by the plaintiff, which was a lower amount offered at the inception of litigation. Kilroy Realty, L.P. v. Newgen Results Corp. et. al. (S.D.S.C. 37-2008-00080164-CU-BC-CTL)
- Defended a former employee of plaintiff company in trade secret misappropriation and unfair competition case involving two Fortune 100 companies. We were retained after plaintiff had already obtained an ex parte writ of seizure of plaintiff’s confidential material from our client’s residence (which required our client to admit that he committed perjury in answering over one hundred questions under oath). We obtained a complete dismissal with prejudice and full release of the employee for payment of $2500. 3M v. Avery Dennison (Schaub) (O.C.S.C. Case No. 765983)
- Represented one of the largest food companies in the world in a copyright infringement action related to the design and purchase of a proprietary computer software system. Recovered all monies invested by the client in the software, plus attorney’s fees and costs. Nestle USA Inc v. Virtual Integration (C.D. Cal. CV-01144-DDP-E)
- Pursued counterfeiting claims on behalf of one of the oldest apparel companies in the country and won an emergency seizure order of counterfeit goods. Following a jury trial, obtained a judgment that was ten times the value of the counterfeit products sold by the defendant, plus attorney’s fees. Fruit of the Loom v. Mithawala, et al (C.D. Cal CV-03137-JMI)
- Pursued trademark infringement claims on behalf of one of the world’s largest food companies in a case involving the U.S. and international distribution of a food product and won an emergency seizure order of counterfeit goods and a $5 million judgment. Nestle Food Company v. Stoner & Company Inc. (C.D. Cal. CV-05179-HLH-MC)
- Defeated a seizure order sought by Microsoft Corporation against a distributor of computer hardware and software in a trademark and copyright action. Secured insurance coverage for the client which was used to defend the action and fund the settlement, including the payment of all attorney’s fees and costs of settlement. Microsoft Corp. v. Avus Systems & Per. (C.D. Cal. CV-01011-GLT–EE)
- Defended HMO organization against mid-six-figure claims by telecommunications carrier and obtained dismissal with prejudice for no payment of any monies by the client. AT&T Corp v. Watts Health Foundation (C.D. Cal. CV-02591-TJH–E)
- Represented anchor tenant in its claims against landlord of shopping center and City of Long Beach and Coastal Commission and obtained a high six figure monetary settlement and modification of parking scheme for Shoreline Village area in Long Beach and surrounding parking lots. Select Restaurant Co v. Northwestern (C.D. Cal. CV-00454-DT-E)
- Represented plaintiff in one of the first reported trademark decisions related to the use of domain names, and obtained an injunction requiring defendant to modify its domain name. Teletech Customer Care Management, Inc. v. Tele-Tech. Co., 977 F. Supp. 1407, 42 U.S.P.Q. 2d. 1913 (C.D. Cal. 1997)
- Successfully represented plaintiff on appeal and in later trial court proceedings and established that California law did not allow an insurer to argue that insured’s negligence excused insurer’s obligation to pay covered loss. Tuchman v. Aetna, 44 Cal. App. 4th 1607 (1996).
- Obtained a preliminary injunction prohibiting the defendant from including plaintiff’s trademarks in defendant’s book, finding plaintiff had shown a likelihood of confusion, as to the source, sponsorship, or approval of the book. Nestle USA Inc. v. Heart to Heart Publishing Co., 1997 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 21334 (C.D. Cal. 1997)
- Mr. Berman has represented clients in lawsuits filed in Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, and Texas.
Awards and Recognition
From 2004 through 2013 Mr. Berman has been named a Southern California “Super Lawyer” by Law & Politics magazine. He is also recognized by The Legal 500 United States as a leader in the trade secrets field. He was selected by Law Dragon as one of the 3,000 top lawyers in America for 2009. Mr. Berman has lectured at many professional seminars and law schools.
Mr. Berman was admitted to the California bar in 1980.