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Nine Minami Tamaki LLP Attorneys Named to 2024 ‘The Best Lawyers in America’ Lists

Nine Minami Tamaki LLP Attorneys Named to 2024 ‘The Best Lawyers in America’ Lists

The Best Lawyers in America recognized nine Minami Tamaki LLP attorneys in its 2024 edition. Partners Sean Tamura-Sato, B. Mark Fong, Olivia Serene Lee, Suhi Koizumi, Senior Counsel Dale Minami, and Senior Associates La Verne A. Ramsay and Angela Mapa made the Best Lawyers list. Senior Associate Seema Bhatt and Associate Lisa P. Mak were selected for Best Lawyers: Ones To Watch.

Dale, Mark, and Seema are part of the firm’s Personal Injury practice group. Best Lawyers has recognized one or more of the firm’s personal injury attorneys for the past 11 years.

Suhi, Olivia, La Verne, and Angela are part of the firm’s Immigration and Nationality Law practice group. Best Lawyers has recognized one or more of the firm’s immigration attorneys for the past seven years.

Sean and Lisa are part of the firm’s Consumer and Employee Rights practice group. Best Lawyers has recognized one or more of the firm’s consumer and employee rights attorneys for the past three years.

Lawyers on the Best Lawyers list are divided by geographic region and practice areas. They are reviewed by their peers based on professional expertise and undergo an authentication process to make sure they are in current practice and in good standing.

The Ones To Watch awards are recognitions given to attorneys who are earlier in their careers for outstanding professional excellence in private practice in the United States. Lawyers are not permitted to pay any fee to participate in or be recognized by Best Lawyers.

These individual awards qualify Minami Tamaki LLP for consideration by the Best Lawyers Best Law Firms list, which is announced in November. The firm has been recognized nine times on the Best Law Firms rankings, which are based on a rigorous evaluation process that includes the collection of client and lawyer evaluations, peer review from leading attorneys in their field, and review of additional information provided by law firms as part of the formal submission process.

Best Lawyers has published its list for more than three decades, striving to earn the respect of the profession, the media, and the public as a reliable, unbiased source of legal referrals. Its first international list was published in 2006 and since then has grown to provide lists in over 75 countries.

Our hearts go out to the people of Maui

Our hearts go out to the people of Maui

Graphic by Osaki Creative

Minami Tamaki LLP extends its deepest sympathies to those affected by the Maui wildfires, Hawai‘i’s deadliest disaster. The devastation in Lahaina has shaken a community near and dear to us, and our hearts are heavy as the tragedy continues to unfold.

Once the capital of the Kingdom of Hawai‘i, Lahaina is culturally significant to the Native Hawaiian community. The town’s destruction means Hawai‘i has lost a large part of its heritage. 

We extend our sincere gratitude to the first responders, organizations, and volunteers who are working tirelessly to aid and bring comfort to those affected by the fires. The resilience and strength of the community in Hawai‘i during this time of hardship is truly inspiring.

The Maui Strong Fund at the Hawai‘i Community Foundation is providing financial resources that can be deployed quickly, with a focus on rapid response and recovery from the devastating wildfires on Maui. The foundation is waiving donation fees to this fund, so 100 percent of your donation will go to community groups and efforts on the ground in Maui. Donate at hawaiicommunityfoundation.org.

While our focus is on immediate relief efforts in Lahaina, we are also deeply concerned by reports that entities responsible for public safety failed to take appropriate measures to prevent the devastation of Lahaina. Minami Tamaki will remain vigilant in monitoring the aftermath of this tragedy, and we are here to listen and provide support in any way we can.  

Dale Minami on ‘Love thy Lawyer’ Podcast

Dale Minami on ‘Love thy Lawyer’ Podcast

Minami Tamaki LLP co-founder and Senior Counsel Dale Minami appeared on the July 12, 2023, episode of the “Love thy Lawyer” podcast by attorney Louis Goodman.

From the episode teaser (edited): “Dale Minami has had a fascinating career as a lawyer. He is currently one of the top personal injury lawyers in the Bay Area. He was involved in the creation of the Asian American Bar Association and the Asian Law Caucus serving as its first director. Dale was also part of the legal team that successfully overturned Fred Korematsu’s conviction in the famous case of Korematsu versus the United States.

“In this interview, he discusses attending Berkeley during the growth of the civil rights movement and explains how the Asian Law Caucus came to be. Additionally, Dale explains his involvement in the judicial appointments process in the Bay Area and shares behind-the-scenes details of overturning the Fred Korematsu conviction.”

In response to a question about tips for new lawyers, Dale said: “I would advise a new attorney to find a mentor, someone with experience, knowledge, wisdom, and willingness to help you grow. A mentor will shortcut the learning process and accelerate your development of skills. I was too dense and perhaps diffident to ask for help but if I were to do it all over again, I would be more assertive in finding someone and asking for help. I realized later in my career that so many attorneys are willing to help younger attorneys if they were just asked.”

Visit lovethylawyer.com for more episodes.

Minami Tamaki Attorneys Named to 2023 Super Lawyers

Minami Tamaki Attorneys Named to 2023 Super Lawyers

We’re proud to announce that nine Minami Tamaki LLP attorneys were selected as Northern California Super Lawyers and Rising Stars for 2023. A special congratulations to Senior Counsels Dale Minami and Don Tamaki on being named to Super Lawyers for all 20 years! This is a distinction achieved by only 0.4 percent of attorneys in Northern California in 2023.

PERSONAL INJURY
Dale Minami (Top 10, 2013-2018; Top 100, 2007-2023; Super Lawyers, 20 years)
B. Mark Fong (Super Lawyers, 14 years)
Seema Bhatt (Rising Stars)

IMMIGRATION AND NATIONALITY LAW
Olivia Serene Lee (Super Lawyers, 3 years)
Suhi Koizumi (Super Lawyers, 5 years)
Dian Sohn (Rising Stars)

CONSUMER AND EMPLOYEE RIGHTS
Sean Tamura-Sato (Super Lawyers. 3 years)
Lisa P. Mak (Super Lawyers)

CORPORATE/NONPROFIT
Donald K. Tamaki (Super Lawyers, 20 years)

Each year, no more than five percent of the lawyers in California are selected by the research team at Super Lawyers to receive Super Lawyer honors and no more than 2.5 percent are selected to receive the Rising Star recognition.

Super Lawyers, part of Thomson Reuters, is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The annual selections are made using a patented multiphase process that includes a statewide survey of lawyers, an independent research evaluation of candidates and peer reviews by practice area. The result is a credible, comprehensive, and diverse listing of exceptional attorneys.

The Super Lawyers lists are published nationwide in Super Lawyers Magazines and in leading city and regional magazines and newspapers across the country. Super Lawyers Magazines also feature editorial profiles of attorneys who embody excellence in the practice of law. For more information about Super Lawyers, visit SuperLawyers.com.

PHOTO – Top Row (L-R): B. Mark Fong, Suhi Koizumi, Sean Tamura-Sato, Olivia Serene Lee, La Verne A. Ramsay; Middle Row (L-R): David Palmer, Dale Minami* Top 100, Donald K.Tamaki, Seema Bhatt; Bottom Row: (L-R): Lisa P. Mak, Ember Oparowski, Angela C. Mapa, Dian Sohn, Julia Pilkington. – *Chosen to 2023 Super Lawyers **Chosen to 2023 Rising Stars

Chambers Lists Minami Tamaki LLP and Olivia Lee as Among Best in California

Chambers Lists Minami Tamaki LLP and Olivia Lee as Among Best in California

Chambers & Partners ranked Minami Tamaki LLP and Partner Olivia Serene Lee in the immigration section of its new 2023 USA guide.

“Olivia Serene Lee is well regarded for her ability to act on a diverse range of employment-based immigration matters,” writes Chambers. The guide also quotes a peer reviewer who said “Olivia is an impressive driving force at the firm. She is impressive.”

Chambers and Partners is a global leader in legal rankings and insights intelligence. For over 30 years, Chambers has differentiated the very best legal talent by identifying and ranking law firm departments and lawyers globally. Chambers in-depth research teams assess lawyers and law firms across more than 200 jurisdictions around the world, providing independent and impartial intelligence and market insight.

Minami Tamaki LLP’s Immigration and Nationality Law practice is nationally ranked by U.S. News & World Report and Best Lawyers on its “Best Law Firms” list. The practice received a National Tier 2 ranking, the fourth year of being nationally ranked.

Olivia has also been recognized by Super Lawyers in 2021 and 2023 and in the Rising Star category from 2014-2020. Olivia is also listed in the 2018-2022 Best Lawyers in America® for Immigration Law and Who’s Who Legal – Corporate Immigration from 2019-2021.

Dale Minami Named to Forbes ‘Best’ Personal Injury Attorneys List

Dale Minami Named to Forbes ‘Best’ Personal Injury Attorneys List

Forbes Advisor ranked Senior Counsel Dale Minami first on its list of ten Best Personal Injury Attorneys in San Francisco for 2023.

“For decades, Dale has been recognized by his fellow attorneys for his competence and ethics in personal injury law,” said the Forbe Advisor profile. “Although he has transitioned to the role of Senior Counsel in the firm he founded, he still represents clients and has won notable victories both in personal injury litigation as well as in civil rights cases.”

Forbes Advisor collects public data from a variety of sources and uses a model to calculate a specific rating and reviews these results to find the best attorneys in a given practice area. Within the model, Forbes Advisor takes into account factors that legal professionals and consumers value in an attorney’s qualifications. After assigning weighted scores to hundreds of data points, we narrowed the field down to our top choices based on seven criteria.

Dale has received numerous other honors. In 2019, Mr. Minami was honored with the ABA Medal, the American Bar Association’s highest honor. He is the first Asian American to receive the award in its 90-year history.

Dale was selected as a Super Lawyer for each year from 2004 through 2023 in the Personal Injury category, one of the Top 100 Super Lawyers for Northern California in 2005 and from 2007 to 2023, and in the Top Ten Super Lawyers in the Personal Injury Category from 2013 through 2018.

He was also named to the Best Lawyers of America list for nine straight years from 2014-2022 by Best Lawyers, recognized four times as one of the 500 Best Lawyers in America by Lawdragon Magazine (2005, 2014, 2015, 2018), one of Top 100 Litigation lawyers in the State of California by the American Society of Legal Advocates in 2014, and the top three percent of attorneys in the nation by The Legal News.

<strong>Minami Tamaki Investigating BetterHelp Over Data Protection Practices</strong>

Minami Tamaki Investigating BetterHelp Over Data Protection Practices

Minami Tamaki LLP is investigating allegations that telehealth counseling network BetterHelp, Inc. mismanaged sensitive health information.

Based in Mountain View, California, BetterHelp offers online counseling services under several names, including: BetterHelp, Compile, MyTherapist, iCounseling, Terappeuta, Teen Counseling, Pride Counseling, Faithful Counseling, and ReGain.

In 2022, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) issued a proposed order banning BetterHelp from sharing consumers’ health data for advertising. The proposed order also required BetterHelp to pay $7.8 million to settle charges that it revealed sensitive customer data after promising to keep such data private.

The FTC alleged that BetterHelp used consumers’ e-mail addresses and the fact that they had previously been in therapy to instruct Facebook to identify similar consumers and target them with advertisements for BetterHelp’s counseling services.

The allegations against BetterHelp are particularly concerning given the sensitive nature of the information managed by the platform with which the platform deals. Many individuals turn to online therapy services like BetterHelp for assistance with mental health issues that they may be reluctant to discuss in person.

If you used BetterHelp counseling services and wish to discuss this matter, you may contact Minami Tamaki at (415) 788-9000 or through our online form. We look forward to the opportunity to speak with you.

<strong>Remembering Garrick Lew on the 7<sup>th</sup> Anniversary of His Passing</strong>

Remembering Garrick Lew on the 7th Anniversary of His Passing

Seven years ago this Sunday, on March 19, 2016, we lost our dear friend and this firm’s former law partner Garrick S. Lew.

Throughout his life, Garrick stayed true to the principles that guided his life: advancing justice, fighting for the underdog, mentoring young attorneys, and being fiercely loyal to family and friends. His absence is still deeply felt to this day.

We remember Garrick on this anniversary with love to his family – wife Diane Hiura, sons Dillon and Brandon, father Share, sister Sherene, and brother Rictor and Rictor’s wife Patty.

Through the Minami Tamaki Yamauchi Kwok & Lee Foundation, Dale Minami, Donald Tamaki, Brad Yamauchi, Minette A. Kwok, and Jack W. Lee partnered with AABA Law Foundation to create the Garrick S. Lew Fellowship in February 2017. The fellowship awards $10,000 to a third-year law student committed to a criminal defense practice after graduation.

On this anniversary of Garrick’s passing, we recognize the six recipients of the Garrick S. Lew Fellowship selected by AABA Law Foundation:

  • 2017: The inaugural recipient, Christopher R. Gueco, graduated from University of California College of the Law, San Francisco (UC Law San Francisco, formerly UC Hastings). He worked in the Solano County Public Defender before opening his own law practice.
  • 2018: John So graduated from UC Law San Francisco, and worked in the Alameda County, San Francisco, and Ventura County public defender offices. He later served as a Deputy Public Defender in Los Angeles County.
  • 2019: Belle Yan clerked in the public defender offices in the District of Columbia and Alameda County and was a paralegal at the San Francisco Public Defender’s Office. She later served as a Deputy Public Defender in Santa Clara County. Belle graduated from UC Law San Francisco.
  • 2020: Stephanie I. Kim graduated from UC Law San Francisco and worked as a Post Bar Law Clerk in the Santa Clara County Public Defender’s Office. She was previously a Certified Legal Intern in the Marin County Public Defender’s Office and a Trial Law Clerk in the Federal Public Defender’s Office in Los Angeles.
  • 2021: Diana Li graduated from Stanford Law School and the next year served as a fellow in the special litigation section of the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia.
  • 2022: Richard Lee was a 3L at UC Law San Francisco, where he was Editor in Chief of the Hastings Race and Poverty Law Journal. Richard planned to work at the San Francisco Public Defenders after graduation.

Garrick will always be greatly missed, and his legacy continues with those who walk the path he helped blaze.


The AABA Law Foundation administers the Garrick S. Lew Fellowship. Donate to the Fellowship online at https://bit.ly/gsl2023. For information on donating by check, visit the AABA Law Foundation web page. Please write “Garrick Lew Fellowship” in the memo of your check.

Don Tamaki to Keynote 44th Annual Day of Remembrance Event in San Francisco

Don Tamaki to Keynote 44th Annual Day of Remembrance Event in San Francisco

Minami Tamaki LLP Senior Counsel Donald K. Tamaki will keynote 44th Annual Day of Remembrance hosted by the National Japanese American Historical Society, on Sunday, Feb. 19, from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Christ United Presbyterian Church, 1700 Sutter St., in San Francisco Japantown. The event will also be live-streamed. Click here for more information and to register.

Don will also receive the Clifford I. Uyeda Peace and Humanitarian Award, named for a long-time civil rights leader, presented by the National Japanese American Historical Society. Don was a member of the legal team that successfully reopened the wartime Supreme Court case of Fred Korematsu in the 1980s.

The annual Day of Remembrance commemorates President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s signing of Executive Order 9066 on Feb. 19, 1942, which led to the mass incarceration of Japanese Americans on the West Coast. The event celebrates the redress movement that resulted in the signing of the Civil Liberties Act of 1988 and expresses solidarity with other communities currently seeking justice.

“Carrying the Light for Justice” is the theme of the event, emceed by CBS Bay Area news anchor Ryan Yamamoto. The program will include a candle-lighting ceremony, a spoken-word performance by Lauren Ito, and an interfaith benediction and procession led by the Japanese American Religious Federation.