Hon. Daniel Pratt (Ret.)

Profile

Hon. Judge Daniel Pratt (Ret.), a former supervising judge of the Los Angeles County Superior Court, handled settlement, case management, civil law and motion, and probate calendars in thousands of cases during his 20-year judicial career.

Judge Pratt is highly regarded for his skill in streamlining the case management process in mass tort litigation and counsel have praised his proficiency and resourcefulness in the resolution of diet-drug product liability cases in California.

A full-time mediator and arbitrator since 2008, Judge Pratt is known as a

decision maker who is also lauded for his thoroughness and careful reading of all briefs and materials that parties submit for mediation and arbitration.

Alternative Dispute Resolution Experience and Qualifications

  • Handled all Fen-Phen diet drug product liability cases in California from 1998 to 2006, of which all 4,700 cases were ultimately settled with only two trials conducted.
  • Mediated thousands of cases involving a variety of issues since 1993, including complex business and commercial, construction defect, employment, environmental, insurance, mass torts, catastrophic personal injury, professional liability, and real property.
  • One of four judges in Los Angeles County who handled California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) cases in 2006 and 2007.
  •  Taught judicial education seminars, including “Successful Settlements”.
  •  Tried more than 700 court and jury trials in a variety of matters.
  • Fluent in Spanish.

Special Master/Discovery Referee

  • e-Discovery referee for unlawful termination case involving age discrimination claims.
  • e-Discovery referee on high-profile pharmaceutical lawsuit.
  • Mediator and discovery referee in $4 million settlement of dispute involving chief executive officer’s termination from healthcare company.
  • Neutral evaluator on damages in case involving death of family in house fire.

Representative Mediations

  • Aviation–Resolved multiple claims following death of pilots in private jet airplane crash after cargo door opened on takeoff. Settled payment dispute between owner of high-end private jet airplane and Management Company that provided pilots and plane maintenance.
  • Business/Commercial–Settled commercial disputes spanning construction, employment insurance, healthcare, real estate, and technology industries.
  • Class Action/Mass Tort–Mediated alleged violations of California Vehicle Leasing Act. Reached substantial settlement as mediator for 49-plaintiff case involving quinine products. Settled invasion of privacy dispute between plaintiff class and financial company over conversations recorded without class members’ knowledge.
  • Employment–Mediated and settled disputes involving wage and hour, prevailing wage, harassment, discrimination, unlawful termination, whistleblower, failure to accommodate, and workers’ compensation matters, including multi-plaintiff cases.
  • Environmental–One of four judges in Los Angeles County who handled California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) cases in 2006 and 2007.
  • Healthcare–Resolved cases including disputes between doctors, insurance coverage, medical malpractice claims, medical device, and healthcare-related employment matters.
  • Insurance –Mediated and settled several bad faith cases involving failure to cover and failure to defend.
  • Personal Injury –Settled disputes involving auto, construction site, elder care, premises and product liability, workers’ compensation, and wrongful death matters.
  • Professional Liability–Resolved claims against pharmaceutical company and pharmacy that child’s exposure to parent’s prescription product caused adverse effects. Settled claims of improper elder care causing pressure sores and pulmonary aspiration affecting plaintiff. Settled dispute involving claims that doctor and nurses ignored standard of care in treating.
  • Real Estate –Mediated and settled real estate disputes involving land use, landlord-tenant, profit participation, trusts and estates, and property damage issues.

Honors, Memberships, Professional Activities

  • Attendee, U.S. Army War College Strategic Implementation Seminar, 2011
  • Recipient, Judge of the Year Award, Celtic Bar Association, 2008
  • Recipient, Lifetime Judicial Award, Southeast District Bar Association, 2008
  • Judge of the Year, Consumer Attorneys of Los Angeles, 2004
  • Judge of the Year, Southeast District Bar Association, 2000
  • Judge of the Year, Whittier Bar Association, 1997
  • Member, California Judges Association, 1988-present (former board member)
  • Municipal Court Judges Association of Los Angeles County, 1988-present
  • Mexican-American Bar Association, 1987-present
  • Los Angeles County Bar Association, 1977-present
  • Southeast District Bar Association, 1977-present
  • Advisory Committee, California State Bar Litigation Section
  • “Expanded Horizons,” Daily Journal, ADR profile, February 9, 2009

Education and Work Experience

  • 2008-present    Independent Mediator, California
  • 2008-2014    JAMS
  • 1989-2008    Judge, Superior Court, Los Angeles County, (Supervising Judge, 1996 and 1997)
  • 1988-1989    Court, East Los Angeles Judicial District, Los Angeles County, CA
  • 1983-1988    Deputy District Attorney, Los Angeles County
  • 1981-1983    Deputy Public Defender, Los Angeles County
  • 1977-1981    Private law practice (emphasis in family law, personal injury, business, and criminal law), Norwalk, CA
  • 1977    J.D., Western State University School of Law, Fullerton, CA
  • 1972    B.A., California State University, Long Beach, CA

Representative Cases

Business

  • Contractual dissolution of a business partnership conflict.

Employment

  • Settled employment and constructive termination case.

Personal Injury

  • Case after jury trial with judgment for $3.5 million. Case settled for $3.4 million.
  • Dispute involving an electrical blanket that caught on fire, causing severe burn injuries to Plaintiff.

CASE SUMMARIES

  • Settled sexual harassment lawsuit for $1.9 million
  • Multiple wage and hour disputes, including public works projects
  • Multiple wrongful termination claims
  • Settled severe injury case where glass broke near ATM causing injury to customer
  • Traumatic brain injury caused by wheel flying off truck and hitting plaintiff in oncoming traffic
  • Trip and fall in casino where patrons were allowed to the take drinks onto dance floor
  • Multiple suits regarding bedsores in assisted living facilities
  • Multiple suits involving substandard care and low staffing of assisted living facilities
  • Class action against for profit schools by students
  • Settlement of a medical partnership dissolution by two former best friends. Multiple claims.
  • Flooding of condo by fire sprinklers when smoke alarm went off
  • Unlawful detainer where monthly rent was $28,000. Landlord claimed destruction by tenant which exceeded cleaning deposit.

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