Representative Cases: Please note that every legal matter is different. The outcome of each legal case depends upon many factors, including the facts of the case, and no attorney can guarantee a positive result in any particular case. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.

DEFECTIVE PRODUCTS

Product Liability – Defective Propane Tank:  $2,280,000 Recovery

While attending a barbeque at a friend’s home, an overfilled spare propane tank stored under a barbeque grill on a hot day in Santa Clara exploded, spewing a stream of fire and burning our client over 35% of her body.  Each defendant pointed the finger of fault at other defendants but we demonstrated the responsibility for this tragic accident on every defendant – the valve maker, the supplier of propane, the manufacturer of the grill, and the gas station which provided the propane.  The case was settled prior to trial by Dale Minami for a total of $2,280,000.  Our client is now living a very productive and happy life despite her misfortune.

Product Liability – Elevator accident – Defense Verdict 

A 46 year-old warehouse worker was killed when he attempted to use a forklift to pry open an elevator’s doors to gain entry. His family sued our client, the elevator service company.  Mark Fong represented the company at trial and obtained a defense verdict for the elevator company.

Defective Product- Burn from Surgical Instrument: $575,000 Recovery

We represented a 43 year-old nurse who underwent an elective gynecological procedure at a hospital in Santa Rosa California to stop excessive peri-menstrual bleeding.  During the procedure, the insulation failed in the hysteroscope (electrocautery device) used in the procedure, which caused our client to suffer third degree vaginal burns and psychological trauma.  Her case settled before trial for $575,000. Mark Fong represented the Plaintiff.

GOVERNMENT NEGLIGENCE

Government Liability – Motor Vehicle Accident – Blind-Spot Created Unsafe Intersection:  $275,000 Recovery

Our client were traveling through an intersection on a green light in Oakland when the defendant driver attempted to make a left turn, also on a green light, and hit our clients’ car.  The defendant driver did not see our clients’ vehicle because of a blind spot created in the intersection due to a public transit support column placed in the median.  This intersection has been the site of many accidents under similar circumstances and had been well documented by the City since the early 1970s.  One client suffered fractured C6 and C7 vertebrae which required fusion.  She was forced to wear a “halo” neck brace that was fixated to her body and head for three months.  The City settled out of court for $275,000.

Pedestrian Killed by Bus: $425,000 Recovery

Our client was the 95 year-old mother of a man who was run over by a City bus in San Francisco.  While crossing the street on a green light, the man saw the bus driver run the red light and frantically waved his arms to get the driver’s attention. Despite this, the bus driver hit our client’s son and dragged him until a witness yelled and honked at the driver to stop.  The man was taken to the hospital where he suffered for five days, until he could no longer fight and his life support was removed. Dale Minami settled his mother’s wrongful death claim for $425,000.

Violation of Civil Rights – Police Failed to Follow Jail Procedures: $900,000 Recovery

Our clients were the 12 year old daughter and 3 year old son of a 31 year old alcoholic man who died while in custody in Defendants’ jail in San Joaquin County. The man had been pulled over by the Highway Patrol and was found to be driving drunk and carrying loaded guns in his trunk.  He remained in the Administrative Segregation section of the County jail for 40 hours, during which time he suffered increasingly severe symptoms of alcohol withdrawal.  The guards, inmates and his visitors all noticed his symptoms but the guards never called a doctor or nurse to examine him.  Finally he suffered a blackout, fell, struck his head on a jail toilet and died of a brain hemorrhage. We showed the defendants violated their own policies and procedures for handling persons accused of DUI by placing the decedent in Administrative Segregation rather than simply the drunk tank where he belonged, and then failing to monitor his potentially life threatening medical condition of alcohol withdrawal thereafter.  Mark Fong represented the Plaintiffs and obtained a recovery of $900,000 for them.

Public Entity Liability – Pothole:  $145,000 Recovery

An accomplished musician and law student was riding his bicycle with his girlfriend on a rainy day.  On his way back to his apartment in Berkeley California, he rode into a pothole which was one foot wide, one foot long, and six inches deep which had become filled with rainwater.  As he was thrown off of his bike, he extended his left arm to break his fall.  Injuries that resulted from the fall included fractured 3rd, 4th, and 5th metacarpals that required surgery to implant permanent hardware to stabilize.  The City was liable for causing the injury, and the case was settled out of court.  Seth Rosenberg represented the plaintiff.

Cable Car Strikes Pedestrian: Wrongful Death: $500,000 Recovery

Our clients were the children of a 76 year old woman who was struck by a cable car while walking across the street near her home in the North Beach area of San Francisco and later died. Passengers aboard the cable car saw our clients’ mother walking slowly in the crosswalk before she was hit and yelled at the operator to stop. The decedent was vision and hearing impaired, so did not see or hear the cable car approaching.  Plaintiffs sued the City and the cable car operator for wrongful death. Mark Fong represented the Plaintiffs and obtained a settlement for them of $500,000.

Dangerous Condition of City Sidewalk: $237,000 Recovery

An 85 year old man who tripped and fell over a section of sidewalk which had become pushed up 1.5 inches by tree roots in the Richmond district of San Francisco suffered severe facial fractures as a result of his fall.  We alleged the dangerous sidewalk condition had existed for years, during which time a number of people stumbled on it.  The Americans with Disability Act requires that any vertical offset in a sidewalk greater than ¼ inch must be repaired.  Although City workers made repairs to the water line and inspected the trees at this location before the accident, no one reported the dangerous sidewalk or made any attempt to repair it before our client fell.  Likewise, the owner of the property adjacent to the sidewalk never reported the condition to the city or fixed it.  The case settled before trial for $237,000.  Mark Fong represented the Plaintiff.

GENERAL NEGLIGENCE

Negligence – Man Suffers Brain Damage as a Result of Heart Attack at Gym: $1.8 Million Recovery

A 56 year old chemist was exercising at a gym when he suffered a heart attack while using equipment.  Another gym member saw him slumped over and yelled for help.  The employees of the gym were not trained well in CPR, and no Automated Electronic Defibrillator was available which could have restored the electrical dysfunction which prevented oxygen from reaching his brain.  Our client was unconscious for over six minutes before paramedics arrived and is now in a permanent vegetative state due to the brain damage he suffered from lack of oxygen.  To its credit, the gym was planning to install “AEDs” at its facilities before the incident and has now become a leader in exercise safety.  The recovery included $1.2 million for injuries suffered, and $600,000 to his wife for loss of consortium.

Defective Auto Repair – Failure to Re-attach Wheel – $310,000 Recovery

Mark’s client had repairs made to his car at an auto repair shop in Oakland California which required removal his right rear wheel.  After the car was driven 100 miles, the wheel came off while the client was driving on the highway, resulting in a three-car crash.  The client was rendered unconscious and suffered multiple rib and clavicle fractures as well as an injury to his thoracic spine which left him with diminished sensation over his torso.  The case settled for $310,000. Mark Fong represented the Plaintiff.

Defective Anti-Theft guard-$300,000 Recovery

A 45 year-old heavy equipment operator for San Joaquin County worked for an employer who purchased a new tractor, for which the manufacturer fabricated a heavy gage metal anti-theft guard which fit over the door.  The manufacturer did not give any instructions how to remove the guard or any warning that the guard was designed to fold into two sections as soon as it was taken off the door. As the client was removing the guard for the first time, the top section collapsed on top of him, striking him on top of his head and smashing into his neck which required fusing the neck bones.  After surgery, Mark Fong’s client returned to work with the County in a light duty position as he was no longer able to operate heavy machinery.  The case settled for $300,000.

Underground Drilling Through Power Lines:  $1.15 million Recovery

An excavation subcontractor was hired to do trenching work for underground fiber-optic lines in Santa Clara California.  The contractor did not follow proper procedures to locate and mark the underground electric lines near where they were digging their trench, and ended up drilling through the power lines owned by our client, an electrical company.  This caused thousands of residents and businesses to lose power. Mark Fong obtained a $1.15 Million settlement for the electrical company.

Shooting: $105,000 verdict

Mark Fong’s client was shot in the face by his girlfriend’s father during an argument at the father’s home in Stockton, California.  The bullet remained lodged in our client’s neck and he required dentures to replace the teeth which were damaged by the bullet.  The defendant’s insurance company denied coverage for the shooting, claiming it was an intentional act.  Mark argued to the jury at trial that the shooting was accidental and that the defendant’s actions were negligent as he only meant to scare, not shoot, the plaintiff. The jury agreed and the insurance company subsequently paid the judgment.