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$1.25 Million Settlement for Restaurant Employees

$1.25 Million Settlement for Restaurant Employees

The Alameda County Superior Court has granted final approval to a $1.25 million dollar wage and hour class action settlement against a California company which owns and operates more than thirty franchise locations of a popular sit-down restaurant chain. [The actual name of the employer and chain cannot be disclosed here under the terms of settlement.]

The plaintiffs and class members were represented by Kevin R. Allen and Brad Yamauchi of Minami Tamaki LLP.

The settlement class consists of over 5,000 hourly restaurant employees in California who plaintiffs allege were not provided with off-duty meal and rest breaks, reporting time pay, and split-shift differential pay as required by law.

Please contact us for more information or to speak with an attorney about your employer’s policies pertaining to meal and rest breaks, reporting time pay, or split shift differential pay.

Before ‘Linsanity’ the movie, Evan Leong did a film for us

Before ‘Linsanity’ the movie, Evan Leong did a film for us

Linsanity-posterLINSANITY, the documentary about basketball star Jeremy Lin, last night kicked off CAAMFest 2013, or what was previously known as the San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival.

Attorneys Mark Fong and Olivia Lee were among the attendees in the sold-out crowd at the Castro Theatre for the screening. Olivia was so excited to see the film that she was the first in line (photo below).

This independent film by Evan Jackson Leong has received rave reviews and even a coveted screening at the Sundance Film Festival.

But few know that before LINSANITY and the movie about what became a sports phenomenon, Evan actually made a film for our law firm.

Well, it wasn’t really a film. It was a mediation video for one of our big personal injury cases. But still an Evan Jackson Leong production of our own!

We’re thrilled at Evan’s success with this film and wish him continued good fortune as LINSANITY continues its film festival tour!

Olivia Lee of our Immigration Practice Group first in line at the CAAMFest 2013 screening of LINSANITY.

6th Annual Dale Minami Public Interest Fellowship Dinner

More than 230 law students, attorneys, judges, and supporters attended the 6th Annual Dale Minami Public Interest Fellowship gala dinner on January, 25. 2013, at Far East Cafe in San Francisco’s Chinatown. Berkeley Law 2Ls Joy Wang and Emily Chen served as the dinner co-chairs.

Each year, the Fellowship provides critical financial support for recent graduates working towards social justice in the API community. This year’s recipient, Judith Le, is doing great work for Mayor Corey Booker and the Policy Department of the City of Newark, New Jersey. At the dinner, Quyen Ta gave an inspiring speech for young lawyers and Judge Lucy Koh provided a heartening look at the history of diversity on the federal bench.

“We are very grateful for the support we’ve received from Minami Tamaki LLP these past six years,” said Bryan Springmeyer, the fellowship’s program director. “Aside from being our top donor, the firm’s partners and associates have made their resources and connections available to help ensure that each event has been successful. Every year, our law student volunteers are inspired by the achievements highlighted at the event and excited to have met with Dale Minami, Don Tamaki and the other trailblazers of our community.”

March for Innovation

March for Innovation

march_for_innovationThe technology industry has struggled for years to keep foreign national tech innovators in our country with our antiquated immigration laws.

To address this as immigration reform discussion is ripe, a group of entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, and even NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg have launched a virtual march on Washington ( They will be using the web and social media to argue for making the U.S. more welcoming for skilled workers.

We are America’s innovators — the leaders of technology and innovation companies from Silicon Valley start-ups to companies across America — and we’re working with the Partnership for a New American Economy to lead a movement among all Americans to pass sensible immigration reform.

Minami Tamaki LLP’s Immigration Practice Group has been at the forefront of providing immigration strategies for technology companies and advocating on their behalf. We have participated in discussions among the White House’s Small Business Administration leading to the creation of the USCIS Entrepreneurs in Residence program. Practice leader Minette Kwok also currently serves on the national Board of Trustees of the American Immigration Council (AIC) in Washington, D.C., whose mission is to lead and develop wide reaching and forward thinking national policy on behalf of immigrants.

Minami Tamaki and In re Sergio C. Garcia on Admission

Minami Tamaki and In re Sergio C. Garcia on Admission

UPDATE (01/02/2014) – The California Supreme Court rules Sergio C. Garcia can be admitted to the state bar. Minami Tamaki LLP was one of the firms representing the Committee of Bar Examiners of the State Bar of California with respect to the Bar’s recommendation to the high Court that Garcia be allowed to become a lawyer. Read the ruling here:

UPDATE (10/5/2013) – Calif. Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law Assembly Bill 1024, allowing undocumented immigrants to be licensed as attorneys in California. The bill was introduced by Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez inspired by Sergio Garcia.

Garcia, who was brought to the United States by his undocumented immigrant parents when he was 17 months old, has earned a law degree and passed the California State Bar Examination and moral character check. His application was certified to the California Supreme Court for review. The Court issued an order asking for clarification of several issues related to the practice of law by undocumented immigrants.

Minami Tamaki LLP was one of the firms representing the Committee of Bar Examiners of the State Bar of California with respect to the Bar’s recommendation to the high Court that Garcia be allowed to become a lawyer. The Committee of Bar Examiners’ brief argues that state and federal laws permit Sergio Garcia to be licensed as an attorney in California. Also on the brief were Professor Emeritus Bill Ong Hing, attorneys from the State Bar of California, the law firm of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP and UC Davis School of Law Dean Kevin R. Johnson.

The case is In re Sergio C. Garcia on Admission (S202512).

$3.1M Recovery in Medical Malpractice Case

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.

We represented a 51-year old Home Care Provider, who was driving in the course and scope of his employment as a caregiver in San Francisco. Our client was struck by a Hummer rented from the Hertz Corporation and driven by a foreign tourist making an illegal turn on a red light. He was taken the emergency department of the local hospital by ambulance but at the emergency department, Vernon’s treating physicians’ inadvertently injured his spinal cord rendering him a partial quadriplegic.

Senior Counsel Mark Fong, Partner Dale Minami and Associate Eunice Yang, handled both the auto accident claim which settled for Hertz’ policy limits of $1 million and later settled the claim against the physicians and the hospital for $2.1 million.

Our client faced a number of challenges in settling the medical malpractice case. First, noneconomic damages were capped at $250,000 due to MICRA. His past and future wage loss claim was $252,157. Defendants argued plaintiff’s claim for future medical expenses was unrecoverable as a matter of law, as the compensation carrier had agreed to provide John with lifetime medical care and defendants were entitled to introduce this fact to the jury.

The PI team argued, however, through Plaintiff’s experts in healthcare financial administration, life care planning and workers compensation utilization review, that workers compensation is unlikely to pay for much of the treatment he will need over the next 30 years, leaving him exposed at the time when he will most need care.

The team settled the medical malpractice case for $2.1 million, recovering his entire wage and the terms of the settlement provides Vernon with the lifetime care that he needs

Pedestrian Safety Education

Pedestrian Safety Education

Since the 1950s, San Francisco pedestrians have faced a steady risk of being injured or killed by motorists.

Senior citizens, in particular, face the greatest risk for being fatally injured when hit by cars. A S.F. Health Department’s study of pedestrian deaths revealed that while adults 65 years of age and older account for 15% of the city’s total population, they account for nearly 50% of pedestrians killed in traffic accidents.

As an attorney who has handled numerous cases in Japantown, I have seen too many tragedies of accidents with the elderly. After my last case involving Kenji Suzuki’s unfortunate death, I felt that public education of the elderly in Japantown was necessary to prevent future deaths and injuries. So, with the generosity of the Suzuki/Sato families, we decided to do SOMETHING about this problem. Please share this website with elderly Japanese Americans and their families who live, work and visit Japantown.

If You Bought an LCD Flat Panel Product, You May Qualify for a Cash Payment

If You Bought an LCD Flat Panel Product, You May Qualify for a Cash Payment

Oct. 18 Update: See today’s announcement regarding this settlement.

We want to make sure you do not miss the announcement of the historic settlement of one of our cases that could mean $25, $100, $200 or more in your pocket.

Since 2007, Minami Tamaki partner Jack Lee has served as the Court-appointed Liaison Counsel for consumers, known as “indirect purchasers,” in a class action against ten leading international companies for unlawfully conspiring to fix prices of LCD panels used in laptops, desktop monitors, and flat screen televisions. The case is IN RE TFT-LCD (FLAT PANEL) ANTITRUST LITIGATION, MDL Case No. 1827, pending in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California in San Francisco.

The indirect purchasers we represent include individual and private companies in 24 states and the District of Columbia that purchased laptops, monitors, and TVs containing LCD panels for use (and not for resale) from January 1, 1999, to December 31, 2006.

This litigation has resulted in settlements totaling approximately $1.1 billion, the largest amount ever obtained for consumers who bought products indirectly from retailers and resellers, and not directly from the original manufacturer. The net proceeds of the settlement, after attorneys’ fees and costs, will be distributed to consumers and businesses that submit claim forms.

We believe it is likely that you, like tens of millions of other consumers, may have purchased one or more of the products at issue in this case during the seven year period that the price-fixing occurred. We hope that you will take advantage of the opportunity to recover any unlawful overcharges you paid as a result of this conspiracy.

Consumers and businesses in the District of Columbia and the following 24 states are eligible to participate in this settlement:  Arizona, Arkansas, California, Florida, Hawaii, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Vermont, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

Eligibility requirements and instructions on the claims process are available online at the web site: deadline for filing claims is December 6, 2012. Eligible consumers will be able to collect $25, $100, $200 or more by answering a few simple questions about the number of LCD flat screen TVs, monitors, and laptops they bought from 1999 to 2006. The exact amount of each payment will depend upon the number of products purchased and the number of claims filed. No receipts or other documents are required for small claims.

We believe that the eligibility requirements and claims process described on the web site are clear and simple. However, if you have questions or would like assistance in preparing your claim, we invite you to contact our toll-free LCD help line at 1-855-225-1886 or via e-mail at

While Minami Tamaki LLP is pleased to announce this settlement and to have played a substantial role in this momentous litigation, we will ultimately measure our success by the benefits actually received by consumers eligible to share in the proceeds, including our friends and clients. We are therefore notifying you of this opportunity, urging you to submit your claim, and offering whatever assistance you feel you may need to realize the maximum benefit available to you. We also encourage you to pass this information on to your friends, family members, and colleagues who may be interested in making claims for their share of this settlement.

Asian American Community Celebrates Nancy Pelosi’s 25 Years in Congress


Partner Brad Yamauchi (back row, second from left) and his wife, Diane Gunderson ( back row, left ), joined an Aug. 28 celebration of Nancy Pelosi’s 25 years of service in Congress. Brad is a board vice president of the Japanese Cultural and Community Center of Northern California (JCCCNC), one of the organizational members of the event host committee. Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi (back row, second from right) was the first woman Speaker of the House.