Welcome to Sullivan, Workman & Dee
ince 1957, we have provided clients throughout California with high quality, responsive and cost-effective legal service. We offer:
- experienced trial lawyers with track records of success;
- practical business and legal problem solvers; and
- tough, but effective, negotiators to help close your deal or settle your case.
We do not charge for initial consultations.
We look forward to the opportunity to represent you.
To schedule a free consultation please call us toll free at (866) 399-8679.
The firm represented a motel owner whose property was being taken by the County of San Bernardino for reconstruction of a freeway onramp. The County's appraiser valued the property at $2,800,000. At trial, the firm's legal team, lead by Charles D. Cummings, obtained a jury verdict in favor of the property owner in excess of $4,100,000.
When the Government condemned apartments owned by one of the firm's clients, the District made a "lowball" offer, using as comparables several undesirable properties in an airport flight path. After several attempts to resolve the matter in a mediation setting, the case successfully settled on the eve of trial for $600,000 more than the Government's offer before trial, plus the amount of rents lost when the Government relocated the client's tenants.
Representing a family of property owners, the firm filed suit against a local governmental agency, seeking damages for unreasonable pre-condemnation conduct and delay. The Government had created blight around the owners' property by acquiring and emptying much of the surrounding land. The Government initially appraised the family's property for, and refused to pay the family more than, $1,025,000. After a trial of the main legal issues in the case, the court ruled that the Government had engaged in unreasonable conduct and delay, and scheduled a jury trial on the issue of the amount of the damages. The Government then settled, purchasing the property for $3,205,000.
The firm prevailed in the trial court and on appeal in probate litigation involving a lost will. The appellate court upheld judgment in favor of the firm's client and an award of discovery sanctions against the firm's opponents. Click here to see the full appellate opinion.
The firm represented an African American who had worked for her employer for over ten years. She had good employment ratings and was knowledgeable in several positions in the company. However, she was terminated due to alleged "restructuring" of the department. The termination was devastating and she went into a deep depression. Extensive investigation revealed that her employer had selectively terminated plaintiff due to her race. Indeed, the employer had kept non-African American employees who had been recently hired. The matter settled successfully at a private mediation, on confidential terms. The client recovered from her depression. She has received additional training in a new field and recently was hired by a new employer.
Sullivan, Workman & Dee, LLP, recently completed representing one of Santa Barbara's most notable surfboard shapers in eminent domain litigation filed by CalTrans for a freeway on-ramp project. In addition to obtaining just compensation, the firm was able to keep the client in possession of his surfboard shop by fighting off an aggressive effort for early eviction until the client could arrange for an orderly and reasonable relocation. The firm, in the same project, represented a windows and door business and was successful in obtaining a loss of goodwill settlement of $315,000.00. CalTrans initially did not make any offer to this business.
The firm represented a dentist in eminent domain proceedings brought by a City to acquire commercial property on which the dentist also conducted his practice. The firm obtained $1,038,865 more than the City initially offered.
Our client had a vision problem which affected his ability to produce parts for a manufacturer at the same rate as other employees. However, he was very knowledgeable and had many attributes that made him an effective worker. The company had a "reduction in force." To select workers for lay off it used recent performance ratings that unfairly focused on the client's disability. Under California law, persons with various disabilities are entitled to protection from such adverse employment actions. The case settled on confidential terms at mediation shortly before trial.
The Government sought to condemn property owned by a family trust on which the family conducted its business. The firm was able to negotiate a settlement in lieu of condemnation for $714,000 more than the Government offered.
These examples are for illustrative purposes only. Every case or legal issue depends on its own facts, law and the unique credibility of the witnesses involved. Results similar to the above are not and cannot be guaranteed.
Gary Kovacic will once again co-chair CLE International’s annual conference on Eminent Domain. The 14th Annual Eminent Domain Conference will be held on April 26-27, 2012 at the Sheraton Garden Grove in Anaheim, California. Mr. Kovacic has also been named for the third year in a row as one of the best Eminent Domain and Condemnation Law attorneys in the Los Angeles Times Magazine’s “Southern California’s Best Lawyers: 2011 Edition” and has been named as one of the Southern California Super Lawyers for 2010 and 2011 by Super Lawyers magazine.
We are pleased to announce that Theresa M. Pranata has joined Sullivan, Workman & Dee as a partner. Ms. Pranata will chair the firm's Elder Law and Trust and Estates practice, which includes estate planning, special needs trusts, Medi-Cal planning, conservatorships, trust administration, and probates.
Ms. Pranata graduated from Loyola Law School in 2001. Ms. Pranata is an active member of the Los Angeles County Bar Association Trust and Estates Section, Pasadena Bar Association Probate, Trust and Estates Section, and San Gabriel Valley Bar Association. She also serves on the Los Angeles County Superior Court's Probate Volunteer Panel, accepting court appointments to represent elders and developmentally disabled adults in probate court proceedings.