Christine Spagnoli continues her career of fighting for consumers, both in the courthouse and the statehouse.
San Francisco, CA (WiredPRNews.Com)—Christine D. Spagnoli, one of California’s top consumer attorneys, was elected president of the Consumer Attorneys of California, (CAOC), at its 47th annual convention held in San Francisco last October. For more than two decades, Spagnoli has fought for California’s consumers, patients and workers in the courtroom. She now brings that fighting spirit to Sacramento.“The secret to my success has been focusing all my energies on the most egregious injustices that I come across,” said Spagnoli. “A consumer attorney is usually the last line of defense for average folks victimized by powerful organizations, corporations or governments – I take that responsibility seriously.”
Spagnoli has won some big victories for her clients that have faced some very egregious injustices:
• The heavy equipment operator who received third degree burns over 75% of his body when his cab erupted in flame. The cause was a defective “o-ring” – a small piece of inexpensive, imported rubber. Spagnoli’s win allowed the victim to pay-off the $3.5 million in medical debt incurred after more than two dozen surgeries.
• The four children who were badly burned when their mother was driving them home from church on Christmas Eve and the car burst into flames when it was rear-ended. The cause was GM’s defective placement of the fuel tank on their Chevy Malibu. Company engineers had proposed another location, but it would have cost an additional $6.80 and was rejected. After examining GM documents that did a cost benefit calculation that a human life was only worth $2.40, the judge determined that GM sought to maximize profits to the disregard of public safety and ordered punitive damages to deter car manufacturers from every undertaking another such callous calculation of human life. The win helped pay for the children’s care and massive medical bills – the six-year-old required nearly 70 surgeries in the six years following the accident.
• The Whittier community college student who suffered the amputation of both arms after being electrocuted by a high voltage power line during his part-time job as an avocado picker. The court determined that Edison knew its power lines were too close to trees that would be regularly picked and violated its own rules in failing to keep the trees trimmed. Spagnoli’s win allowed the young man to pay his substantial medical bills and live independently.
• The Los Angeles Police Department bomb squad officer who was paralyzed in a car accident. The cause was defective Goodyear tires that suffered from “tread separation.” Her work on the case forced the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to investigate and eventually have the tires recalled – saving untold lives.
Spagnoli is a strong advocate in our civil justice system and in an individual’s right to a civil jury trial. “If our constitutional right to have a trial by jury is eliminated, for whatever reason, then in essence, we have no individual rights. As president of CAOC, my mission is to ensure that the civil justice system remains available to all Californians. The only real way to maintain an individual’s rights is by ensuring access to the civil courts without delay. The trial by a jury of our peers is the most important tenet of Democracy”
Spagnoli is a partner in the Santa Monica-based law firm of Greene, Broillet & Wheeler LLP, where she’s worked since graduating from Loyola Law School in 1986. Amongst her many recognitions, the Los Angeles Daily Journal ranks Spagnoli as one of the Top 100 Most Influential Attorneys in California. She is included in the Top 50 Female Super Lawyers by Los Angeles Magazine 5 years running, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008.
Consumer Attorneys of California (CAOC) is a statewide organization of attorneys who represent plaintiffs and consumers who seek responsibility from wrongdoers. Its mission is to seek justice for all, preserve the right to trial by jury for all consumers, and uphold the honor and dignity of the legal profession and the highest standards of ethical conduct and integrity. www.caoc.com
Media Contact: Christine D. Spagnoli