Construction & Real Estate Creditors' Rights & Banking Commercial Disputes & Litigation Insurance Coverage Professional Liability Tort Litigation
Candice R. Broock Christopher T. Carson Jeffrey M. Kilmer (ret.) Donald W. Kolb James P. Laurick Robert S. May Robert B. Miller Robert C. Muth Kurt C. Peterson Graham M. Sweitzer Peter J. Viteznik Stephen C. Voorhees Bob Patterson Douglas H. Swayne
St. John's Bridge | Portland, Oregon

Firm News

Robert May presents at DRI event in Chicago

Robert May teamed up with San Diego attorney Michelle Burton to present on the topic of product warnings at a DRI event in Chicago. This two-day event was held at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business in downtown Chicago. The event drew on a faculty from across the country to cover topics ranging from medical liability, federal regulation, banking and insurance related to the marijuana industry.

Defense Verdict in King County

Robert May obtained a defense verdict in a recent dog attack trial in a King County. Plaintiff alleged that a dog belonging to Rob’s client aggressively charged him while walking in front of the client’s house, causing him to fall. Plaintiff suffered an acetabular fracture of his right hip in the fall, requiring two surgeries to repair, incurring medical bills of $260,000. Plaintiff alleged the dog’s owner was liable for failing to restrain the dog and allowing the dog to run unrestrained in a public area, in violation of the City of Issaquah “leash law”. Rob argued his client’s dog never left the yard and didn’t cause plaintiff to fall.

This case was unique in that liability turned upon the character of the dog and whether it was foreseeable to Rob’s client that her dog may leave the yard to chase after pedestrians. Plaintiff attempted to call an animal behaviorist to testify the dog exhibited “territorial aggression” when it charged toward plaintiff, that it was unreasonable to have the dog off leash in her front yard and that plaintiff’s resulting injury was foreseeable. Rob successfully excluded the majority of this expert’s testimony. Rob also successfully excluded a medical doctor called by plaintiff to testify that the biomechanics of plaintiff’s fall was consistent with plaintiff’s testimony and inconsistent with Rob’s client’s testimony.

The jury deliberated for three hours before returning a unanimous verdict for Rob’s client.

Insurance Law Update: March 1, 2018

Washington plaintiff sued Oregon corporation for accident in California. What state's law applies?

Plaintiff can recover lost profits from cannabis business.

Read the complete Insurance Law Update here.

Contents Inventory Prepared by Public Adjusters Ruled Inadmissible

Insurance Law Update: December 29, 2017. A contents inventory may be stricken, in its entirety, if it is not based upon reliable information. Where a property inventory is not prepared by the insured but instead prepared by public adjusters based upon price information obtained from 3rd parties it may be inadmissible hearsay. For more information, click here.

Robert May will be presenting to the Combined Claims Conference

Robert May will present on ethical issues faced by insurance producers, brokers and agents at the Combined Claims Conference in Pasadena, California March 6 and 7, 2018.

Robert May will be presenting to the Oregon IASIU Insurance Fraud Conference

Robert May will present an arson case study at the annual meeting of the International Association of SIU investigators. His presentation will be on October 20, 2017 in Portland, Oregon.

Insurance Law Update: August 7, 2017

Coverage For Pollutants: The efficient proximate cause rule invalidates the absolute pollution exclusion. (Zhaoyun Xia, et al. v. ProBuilders Specialty Ins. Co.). For more information, click here.

Robert May will be presenting to the Los Angeles All Industry Day

Robert May has been invited to present to the Los Angeles chapter of the CPCU Society on claim practices. His presentation will be on October 17, 2017 in Studio City, California.

Insurance Law Update: June 13, 2017

Third Party Administrators: A TPA or independent adjuster may be liable to the insured for violating claim handling regulations (Merriman v. Am. Guarantee). For more information, click here.

Robert May will be presenting to the Alaska CPCU

On May 17, 2017 Robert May will be presenting at the Alaska Chapter of the CPCU Institute on property and casualty claims and coverage.

Pete Viteznik will be presenting at the 21st Annual Oregon Construction Law seminar

On September 23, 2016 Pete Viteznik will be presenting at the 21st Annual Oregon Construction Law seminar on the challenges of building homes and resolving residential disputes.

Favorable Recovery for Family of Tragic Incident

Robert Muth successfully negotiated the settlement of a potential wrongful death claim against an Oregon County for $700,000. Mr. Muth represented the widow and surviving children of an employee who was tragically killed in the line of duties for the County. Mr. Muth avoided litigation and brought some additional closure to the family. Read more about the settlement on Oregon Live .

Defense Verdict and Successful Counter-Claim in Multnomah County

Graham Sweitzer and Steve Voorhees successfully defended a legal malpractice lawsuit, and obtained a counter-claim judgment on behalf of local attorneys that were sued by a former client. The matter was tried before a jury over six days in Multnomah County. The plaintiff sought recovery of significant damages relating to the attorneys’ handling of a complex business dissolution matter. In response, the attorneys pursued a counter-claim, seeking recovery of their unpaid fees. Mr. Sweitzer and Mr. Voorhees successfully persuaded the jury that the attorneys had not acted negligently, resulting in a defense verdict on plaintiff’s claims. The jury also found that the plaintiff should be held responsible for his unpaid fees, resulting in a significant judgment in favor of the attorneys’ law firm.

Kilmer Voorhees & Laurick, P.C. continues litigation for Home Forward as it relates to construction defect allegations.

Kilmer Voorhees & Laurick, P.C. continues litigation for Home Forward as it relates to construction defect allegations. Read more about it on Oregon Live.

Pete Viteznik will be presenting at The Evolving World of Construction Defects Seminar in Portland

On May 16, 2013 Pete Viteznik will be presenting at the Evolving World of Construction Defects seminar on the contractors’ role in construction defect litigation and how contractors need to walk the line between the owner expectation and the subcontractor performance.

Chris Carson and Graham Sweitzer Win Appeal for Chimpanzee Sanctuary

A lawsuit filed by a former intern at a chimpanzee sanctuary was appealed after the sanctuary won on summary judgment. Appeal briefs were filed by Graham Sweitzer and the matter was argued before the Oregon Court of Appeals by Chris Carson. The trial court’s ruling was affirmed by the appeals court. Read the details here.

Pete Viteznik Named President of OSB Construction Law Section

Kilmer, Voorhees & Laurick, P.C. is pleased to announce that Peter J. Viteznik is the 2013 President of the Oregon State Bar Construction Law Section.

Current Ongoing $1.65 Million Lawsuit Against Builders for Water Damage

Pete Viteznik currently represents plaintiff Home Forward (formerly known as the Housing Authority of Portland) who has filed a $1.65 million lawsuit against Tom Walsh & Co., Iselin Architects and Vickers/Nelson & Associates, Construction Program Management, Inc., alleging breach of contract and negligence/breach of professional standard of care, regarding the building of Willow Tree Apartments located in Gresham, OR. Read more about it here.

James Laurick and Graham Sweitzer obtain favorable Judgment in Washington Deed of Trust Act Case

James Laurick and Graham Sweitzer recently obtained a Judgment of more than $1.5 million on behalf of a large national bank under Washington’s Deed of Trust Act (RCW 61.24 et seq). It is reported to be one of the first recoveries in a matter wherein the issue of “fair value” under the Washington statute was litigated.

Pete Viteznik presents at The Evolving World of Construction Defects Seminar in Portland.

On May 16, 2012 Pete Viteznik presented at the Evolving World of Construction Defects seminar on the contractors’ role in construction defect litigation and how contractors need to walk the line between the owner expectation and the subcontractor performance.

Pete Viteznik presents at the Deconstructing the Construction Litigation Case Seminar

On March 9, 2012 Pete Viteznik presented at the Deconstructing the Construction Litigation Case seminar to give his perspective on deconstructing the construction litigation case and tackling the complexities of construction litigation in Oregon.

Defense Verdict in Multnomah County

Graham Sweitzer obtained a defense verdict in a $1.3M dollar legal malpractice claim after a 2 week jury trial in Multnomah County. The plaintiff claimed that his former attorney unduly focused his personal injury claim on one party in the underlying case, and failed to pursue claims against three other potential parties before the statute of limitations expired. Mr. Sweitzer successfully established that the other potential parties were not negligent as alleged by plaintiff, and therefore the decision not to pursue claims against them was appropriate. Mr. Sweitzer was assisted by Steve Voorhees and Bob Patterson in the trial.

Defense Verdict in Lane County

Robert Muth secured a complete defense verdict for a KVL client in Lane County, Oregon. Robert defended a plumbing component manufacturer against claims of products liability, negligence and breach of implied warranties. After four days of trial, the jury returned a complete defense verdict in favor of the manufacturer. Bob Patterson provided invaluable technical assistance during the trial.

Success in Blaine County, Idaho

Pete Viteznik secured a $1.188 million jury verdict for KVL's client in Blaine County, Idaho. After four weeks of trial, the jury returned its verdict in a complicated construction defect case. The client's residence is located in Ketchum, Idaho. Robert Muth and Bob Patterson maintained the Idaho KVL "office" during the trial.

Counterclaim Prevails in Arbitration Proceeding

In defending a long-time KVL client, Robert Muth obtained a verdict on a counterclaim against a framing subcontractor. Robert defended the general contractor against all claims and secured an award and subsequent judgment for defective work and resulting damage associated with the framer's poor workmanship.

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