David J. Stock, Esq.’s extensive 45-year legal career has uniquely positioned him as a highly experienced mediator. With a primary focus on civil litigation, his expertise includes handling of diverse personal injury cases involving a wide range of issues, including vehicle accidents, premises liability, public entity liability, industrial accidents, and product liability. He has also handled numerous landlord/tenant, homeowners’ association, construction defect, business, commercial contract, and insurance bad faith matters.

For over 35 years, Mr. Stock has served as a private mediator, specializing in resolving the same types of cases he litigated. His track record includes successful resolutions of hundreds of cases. He has volunteered as a pro tem settlement officer for the courts and as a neutral party in early settlement conference programs, showcasing his knack for facilitating settlements. Moreover, Mr. Stock has served as an arbitrator in over 75 uninsured/underinsured motorist matters, handling them with skill, precision, and attention to detail. His commitment to alternative dispute resolution extends to his service as a court-appointed discovery referee. Mr. Stock’s wealth of experience and proficiency in alternative dispute resolution matters make him a trusted and capable mediator for a wide array of legal disputes.

Mr. Stock’s law practice emphasized general personal injury defense, although he has handled and tried multiple plaintiff personal injury matters as well. His litigation portfolio encompasses a wide spectrum of injuries and issues, including catastrophic injuries, brain injuries, and wrongful death claims. He has represented numerous public entities in the greater Bay Area, successfully handling cases involving alleged civil rights violations, excessive force claims, and severe injuries stemming from rail accidents, roadway issues, and other public property defects, including enforcement and pursuit of statutory and contractual defense and indemnity obligations. Mr. Stock has tried over 30 cases to jury verdicts in both state and federal courts. He has been a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA) since 2008.


  • Personal Injury
  • Public Entities
  • Premises Liability
  • Insurance Coverage & Bad Faith
  • Landlord/Tenant
  • Business & Commercial Contract
  • Real Estate
  • HOA Disputes
  • Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist
  • Civil Rights



  • Santa Clara University School of Law (J.D., 1978)
  • Stanford University (B.A., 1975)


Rankin | Stock | Heaberlin | Oneal. Partner/Shareholder, Managing Partner,  1997-2023  2013-2023

Civil litigation on behalf of public entities, insurance carriers, self-insured defendants (individual and corporate) in addition to business and personal injury litigation on behalf of defendants and plaintiffs. Issues litigated included catastrophic injury claims, wrongful death, real estate disputes, condominium conversion and HOA board claims, hotel liability claims, various commercial claims, first party claims (uninsured, underinsured motorist claims, first party property claims in catastrophic losses), construction, mold-related claims, landlord-tenant disputes, police misconduct, civil rights violations, insurance coverage, trusts and estates. Representation included commercial lines and personal lines of coverage. Over 30 jury trials to verdict in State and Federal courts.

Office of the City Attorney, San Jose. Senior Deputy City Attorney 1996-1997

Civil litigation involving issues pertinent to the public entity, including police misconduct, employment disputes, civil rights violations, land contamination and remediation cost recovery, code enforcement, planning commission issues, personal injury litigation involving City entities.

Mitchell & Stock. Partner 1979-1996

Civil litigation, primarily for self-insured defendants and various insurance carriers. Issues litigated included personal injury, first and third-party insurance coverage and insurance bad faith litigation, land subsidence, construction defect litigation, real estate disputes, hotel liability representing large national chains and entertainment venues. Representation included commercial lines and personal lines of coverage. Public entity defense included police misconduct and personal injury matters. Trial experience also included representation of plaintiffs in personal injury and business disputes, as well as bad faith.

Judicial Externships

Judge William Ingram, United States District Court, Northern District of California
Judge J. Barton Phelps, Superior Court of California, County of Santa Clara


  • State Bar of California (1979)
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth District (2000)
  • American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA)
  • Association of Defense Counsel of Northern California and Nevada
  • AV-Rated by Martindale Hubbell


Mr. Stock has served as a lecturer and as a panel participant for a number of legal and professional groups including the California Continuing Education of the Bar and the Association of Defense Counsel, on topics ranging from basic training for civil defense attorneys to fundamentals of civil litigation and punitive damages.

Representative Cases


  • Handled disputes between customers and retail/wholesale security technology company.
  • Handled disputes between former investors, owners and corporation.
  • Handled dispute between grocery store chain and landlord over obligations to provide property insurance coverage under lease terms.
  • Handled issues re: sale of medical practice interests between existing partners.
  • Handled dispute between 1031 Exchange company and exchangers regarding claims of wrongful distribution of funds
  • Handled dispute between landowner, public entity and contractor over issues regarding toxic waste and contamination at staging site for major public agency transportation project.
  • Handled case involving property left contaminated by waste oil collection company and issues regarding remediation of site.
  • Handled issues regarding purchase and sale of manufacturing business, and contract terms re business form going forward, issues of indemnity, liability.
  • Handled case involving dispute between value of travel agency wherein one owner was buying out the other, and issues arose at to appropriate percentage ownership and valuation of agency.

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Construction Defect

  • Handled multiple cases alleging construction defects by finish contractor in multi- home subdivision developments.
  • Handled case involving dispute between mechanical contractor and general contractor and community college district involving payment for work in construction of several buildings on campus and allegations of plan defects.
  • Handled case involving claims of construction defects by framing contractor on multi-unit development.

Insurance Coverage and Bad Faith

  • Handled bad faith action arising from failure to timely pay on uninsured motorist claim.
  • Handled bad faith action arising from disputes over coverage for major earthquake related damage to home, including all related issues regarding additional living expense, alleged related claims of personal injury and emotional distress claims.
  • Handled insurance coverage dispute regarding insurance agent’s failure to provide appropriate insurance coverage limits in writing commercial policy for nightclub.


  • Handled case of multiple-tenant claims against landlord of apartment complex which was litigated by the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH), and involved Section 8 issues, claims of harassment by landlord.
  • Handled case involving claims of mold infestation in rented house.
  • Handled case claiming toxic mold infestation in rented home leading to claims of profound respiratory injury and demands for compensation in excess of $1 million.

Personal Injury

  • Handled admitted liability wrongful death case involving a solo car rollover. At time of death, decedent was finishing court probation for drug related offenses, gainfully employed and intended to take care of his elderly mother.
  • Handled case involving motorcyclist who became a paraplegic after being cut off by driver who pulled from an intersecting street causing the motorist in front of motorcyclist to brake suddenly in front of motorcyclist.
  • Handled case for national amusement park and hotel chain wherein woman sustained major knee injury while playing on sand volleyball court at park facility, and had multiple surgeries wherein at time of trial she was still in a wheelchair. Volleyball court was found to be defective in construction, leaving debris in the sand which caused her to catch her foot and cause the knee injury.
  • Handled case against national fast-food franchise wherein woman slipped on floor that had been freshly mopped and shattered her knee cap, with multiple continuing surgeries, and substantial income loss, and future medical treatment expected.
  • Handled case involving non-profit adult daycare center, where the elderly decedent, on first day attending center, fell off curb during a fire drill, and sustained a skull fracture and anoxic encephalopathy due to a fracture of the cervical vertebrae with spinal cord contusion, causing her brain to be deprived of oxygen and causing her death.
  • Handled case involving motorcyclist who hit vehicle that had pulled from side street across busy thoroughfare, leaving motorcyclist a quadriplegic and facing lifetime care needs and expenses.
  • Handled case arising from automobile accident with claims of damaged hearing and permanent ringing in the ears.
  • Handled case of 13-year-old hit in crosswalk by vehicle, sustaining permanent brain injury, with resulting excess exposure to vehicle driver.
  • Handled wrongful death case of a father of four killed when his car was hit by drunk driver at freeway speed.
  • Binding Arbitrator in litigated personal injury case, with components of uninsured motorist coverage issues including whether a phantom vehicle was involved, and relative apportionment of fault between all parties and damages assessments, which involved multiple liability and medical experts.
  • Binding arbitrator in complicated auto accident case involving significant evidentiary issues and numerous medical experts to address allegations of traumatic brain injury/PTSD issues.
  • Handled case involving claims that wrong way minor drunk driver on freeway was provided alcohol by adults leading to intoxication.
  • Handled case where Plaintiff fell through a negligently maintained balcony railing in a San Francisco converted condominium, leaving plaintiff a quadriplegic.
  • Handled cases for nightclub owner where security employees were accused of assault and battery of patrons, resulting in personal injury.
  • Handled wrongful death claim arising from suicide committed by property owner allegedly due to prior major landslide causing damage to home, wherein all neighboring property owners were sued.
  • Handled disputed liability bicycle/auto collision case where elderly bicyclist sustained catastrophic injuries, including a laceration of the membranous urethra, C4-5 transverse foramen fractures, and pelvic fractures.
  • Handled sexual assault case brought against owners of large apartment complex for conduct of property manager towards tenant.
  • Handled case involving allegations of improper conduct between high school coach and minor student.
  • Handled case involving allegations of wrongful arrest and detention against major supermarket chain by alleged shoplifter.
  • Handled case involving allegations of unwanted sexual misconduct by masseuse with guest at high end resort.
  • Handled case involving national fraternity foundation hazing/drinking practices which led to death of college-aged fraternity member at fraternity house.
  • Handled dispute for national sorority regarding complaints of hazing.
  • Handled case involving physical altercation between parents at a youth sporting event sponsored by a local non-profit organization.

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Premises Liability

  • Handled case involving double fatality at mountain vacation home as a result of incorrect venting of water heater exhaust leading to death by carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Handled case regarding claims of defective construction of stairs in vacation home, leading to fall and major injury to plaintiff.
  • Handled many cases regarding public sidewalk defects.
  • Handled case wherein general contractor/owner was sued for defects on building site wherein worker fell onto exposed, unshielded rebar, sustaining serious lower extremity injury.
  • Handled case where loading dock worker slipped on material left on loading dock by food delivery service for hospital cafeteria, resulting in fractured hip and hip replacement. Hospital, cafeteria management service, and food delivery service were all involved as parties.
  • Handled case between several business entities wherein dispute was contractual obligations to insure, defend and indemnify amongst the parties - owner, general contractor, sub-contractor - where injury was to worker employed by sub-contractor, including consideration of workers compensation issues.
  • Handled case where claim was made against a luxury hotel chain for a slippery condition in hotel lobby which resulted in elderly plaintiff fall and resulting hip fracture.
  • Handled case where claim was made against national hotel chain for defective automatic door which caught and caused elderly woman to fall and sustain fracture to upper extremity.
  • Handled numerous claims regarding national hotel chain regarding property issues and claims of injury resulting therefrom.

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Probate, Estates & Trusts

  • Handled dispute between surviving brothers where one was suing the other who had been appointed trustee and was accused of elder abuse, and undue influence in the preparation of the father’s trust documents.
  • Handled several-year dispute between surviving adopted son with learning disability issues and surviving adopted daughter of decedent over estate split and management of assets for son.

Property Damage/Nuisance

  • Mediated dispute between members of mountain water district regarding property alterations, property changes and claims of damage caused to neighboring properties due to alterations.
  • Handled claim of major damage to property as a result of water flow from uphill property as a result of unmanaged drainage flow.
  • Massive landslide case from uphill property onto lower large parcel, with damages and nuisance component due to remaining material on downhill property at time of trial.
  • Handled claim between adjacent property owners regarding dispute over blockage of view from new home, after newer home was constructed uphill from existing property.
  • Handled dispute resulting from fire caused by worker retained by one homeowner, which damaged adjacent unit, and claims were made for large amounts of lost and damaged property, requiring significant investigation and discovery into property claimed loss and support for large monetary damage claim.
  • Handled case where uphill owner was sued by downhill condominium development over water seepage disputed to be from damaged water meter or public utility source causing failure of retaining wall on condominium property.
  • Handled dispute between several adjacent property owners regarding usage and improvement of properties and involving issues of adverse possession, easement by prescription, easement by implication equitable easement, easement by estoppel, responsibility for road maintenance servicing properties.
  • Handled case involving dispute over easement granted to property owner to allow replacement of invasive vegetation with native plants on beach hillside, with challenges and harassment from objecting neighbor.

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Public Entities

  • Wrongful death case wherein woman was killed while car was stopped on railroad tracks and struck. Traffic clearance signals were set inconsistently resulting in reduced time to clear tracks before train arrived.
  • Wrongful death case involving driver leaving private business property wherein railroad tracks had to be crossed to access county road, no active controls in place and driver drove in front of approaching train and was killed in the accident.
  • Handled §1983 and §1981 claims and various state law claims arising out of an incident in which plaintiff alleged unlawful detention, interrogation and search by City Park rangers and City police officer, with claim of racial motivation behind actions, with subsequent actions taken with plaintiff’s employers constituting libel, defamation, and also racially motivated.
  • Handled case involving allegations of design error in construction of bicycle lane on city street resulting in accident between bicyclist and automobile crossing lane to make right turn, leaving plaintiff bicyclist with sub-arachnoid brain hemorrhage, multiple rib fractures and clavicle fracture.
  • Handled case involving vehicular accident involving city police vehicle and causing significant spinal injuries to multiple plaintiffs, which included spinal surgeries to one plaintiff.
  • Handled City contract issues with contractors whose work resulted in damage to private property via water intrusion from adjacent public park improvements, with issues of contractual indemnity.
  • Handled defense and indemnity disputes between public entity and contractor, property owner with issues of enforcement of municipal codes, and of obligations to defend and indemnify for defects in work which caused personal injury to third parties.
  • Handled case where elderly gentleman walking in neighborhood tripped on city sidewalk upraised by roots of city tree, falling and striking his head and causing major, irreversible brain damage.
  • Handled case wherein numerous public entities were sued as a result of coordinated effort to investigate illegal activity at various marijuana dispensaries. It was alleged by the plaintiffs that they were unreasonably searched and seized in violation of the Fourth Amendment, unlawfully arrested without probable cause in violation of the Fourth Amendment, and deprived of their Due Process rights in violation of the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments. There were also allegations of excessive force, cruel and unusual punishment, interference with privacy, under the Fourth, Fifth, and Fourteenth Amendments.
  • Handled case wherein multiple public entities were alleged to have been negligent in the management of a watershed area, resulting in massive urban flooding downstream and damage to hundreds of properties.
  • Numerous defective sidewalk claims causing injuries of varying degrees.

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Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (UIM)

  • Arbitrated over 100 binding uninsured/underinsured motorist arbitrations.


“Dave Stock is a great mediator. His vast experience as a trial lawyer and part-time mediator/arbitrator over the years positions him to be an excellent full-time mediator. He listens to attorneys and parties in a way that facilitates the best chance for a case to settle. Because of his calm demeanor and excellent listening skills, Dave is particularly skilled working with difficult parties and cases with sensitive or emotional issues. His experience handling just about every kind of case imaginable means he does not need a lot of time to get up to speed on even the most complex cases. It is extremely helpful to have a mediator direct from the “trenches” for just about any kind of case amenable to mediation.”

“Dave Stock has been a member of the Northern California legal community for over 44 years and, having tried numerous cases in the state and federal courts, there are few of his peers with the depth of knowledge needed to be an effective mediator/neutral. Dave has been a mediator in a variety of cases in which he has been able to assist parties in reaching fair settlements. Not only does Dave bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the table, but he also is a compassionate and thoughtful listener. He is one of the finest neutrals with whom I have been associated.”

“Counsel attended a Settlement Conference and utilized the services of Judge Pro Tem David J. Stock. By 4:30 in the afternoon when the Court was closing, the case was not even close to settling. Mr. Stock recommended that we adjourn to his office nearby. After four hours of additional negotiation, supervised and orchestrated by Mr. Stock, we successfully settled this case. I wish to commend Mr. Stock for his efforts and for going above and beyond the call of duty. He deserves not only the parties’ appreciation and counsels’ appreciation but also deserves the court’s appreciation for conserving considerable judicial resources.”