1 Bradford G. Hughes Partner Wilshire Boulevard Sixth Floor Los Angeles, CA Tel: Fax: EDUCATION University of San Diego School of Law, J.D., 2006 University of Southern California, B.A., 2003 PRACTICE AREAS BIOGRAPHY Business Litigation General Liability Trucking and Transportation Business Transactions Bradford Hughes is a Partner in Selman Breitman's Los Angeles office where he serves as Chair of the Trucking and Transportation Practice Group and Co-Chair of the Business Litigation Practice Group. Bradford is considered an industry leader in defending motor carriers in catastrophic injury litigation at trial and on appeal. He also represents multi-national corporations, mid-sized businesses, real estate developers and financial institutions involved in litigation and transactional disputes. Trucking & Transportation: Bradford brings a wealth of experience to the litigation of catastrophic injury lawsuits arising out of trucking accidents and has extensive knowledge of both the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations and the CSA (Compliance, Safety, Accountability) Program. He defends interstate, intrastate, and local "last-mile" carriers in a variety of litigation, including subrogation and cargo matters. Bradford also manages the firm's 24-Hour Accident Investigation Emergency Response Team for California, Nevada and Washington. Bradford serves as Vice Chair of the ABA's Commercial Transportation Litigation Committee (CTLC), Chair of the New to Trucking Specialized Litigation Group of the DRI Trucking Committee, and is a member of the Trucking Industry Defense Association (TIDA), Transportation Lawyers Association (TLA), Transportation and Logistics Council, and California Moving and Storage Association (CMSA). He has also been published several times on topics ranging from responding to catastrophic emergency accidents, to the obligations of carriers in hiring new drivers, and the impact of the CSA program on the transportation industry. Bradford is regularly called upon to speak to industry and trade groups regarding the litigation of trucking cases and emerging trends in state and federal law, including presentations made to the American Moving & Storage Association Annual Safety Conference, DRI, and local transportation conferences.
2 Business Litigation: Bradford's practice is also devoted to the representation of both closely-held and Fortune 500 corporations. Having handled the prosecution and defense of commercial litigation, Bradford brings a unique and effective approach to complex business disputes. He works closely with his clients in order to obtain the most cost-efficient and profit maximizing results, which includes the thoughtful management of client time, resources, and human capital. Bradford serves as outside general counsel to businesses across Southern California where he works with executives, boards of directors, and shareholders in growing enterprises. Bradford defends cases involving business litigation, including cases involving breach of contract, proprietary trade secrets, non-solicitation/non-compete agreements, alter ego claims, and commercial lease agreements. He also advises clients on the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act, the state and federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Acts, California's SAFE Act, Truth in Lending Act and the Finance Lenders Law Act. A member of the American Bankruptcy Institute, Bradford frequently represents financial institutions in a variety of bankruptcy proceedings initiated under Chapters 7, 11 and 13 of the Bankruptcy Code. Recognized as a 2014 and 2015 Super Lawyers Rising Star and 2015 Top 100 in Southern California Rising Star, Bradford was the lead attorney handling the case of Wells Fargo v. Baker (2012) 204 Cal.App.4th 1063, in which the California Court of Appeal held that the requirement that foreign corporations hold a certificate of authority to qualify as a "resident of Iowa," as it pertained to national banks, was preempted by the National Bank Act because it infringed upon the power of a national bank to sue as fully as natural persons. Wells Fargo v. Baker has been cited more than a dozen times in cases and secondary sources across the United States. Bradford is originally from Playa del Rey, California, and presently resides in the South Bay with his wife. An avid golfer, Bradford tries (poorly) to maintain a single digit handicap. When not on the golf course, he enjoys fishing and traveling with friends and family.. REPRESENTATIVE MATTERS Litigation Trucking and Transportation Successfully defended interstate trucking company involved in a catastrophic accident where plaintiff suffered from substantial pre-existing back conditions. Plaintiff underwent numerous surgical procedures, incurring hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical special damages. Action was resolved prior to trial for less than total special damages. Successfully defended interstate trucking company and its driver in a multi-vehicle accident where plaintiff claimed to have required a spinal fusion as a result of the accident. Obtained a successful resolution of action before depositions were taken after establishing that the client driver of the tractor-trailer was not a substantial factor in causing the accident. Successfully defended interstate trucking company and its driver in an action where plaintiffs alleged that defendants were in violation of Hours of Service regulations, falsified log books and had negligently failed to properly train drivers pursuant to Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations. Successfully defended interstate trucking company and its driver in federal court against wrongful death action where plaintiffs alleged that defendants violated numerous Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations in causing decedent's death. Successfully defended trucking company in a case where defendant driver allowed his tractortrailer to leave the roadway and strike plaintiff's vehicle stopped on the road side. Plaintiff alleged that he suffered a traumatic brain injury, an exacerbation of an existing traumatic brain injury, and severe orthopedic injuries. Obtained favorable settlement of plaintiff's claim at mediation after
3 establishing plaintiff's comparative fault for being illegally stopped, plaintiff's lack of cognitive postaccident complaints, and the specious nature of remaining damages. Defended interstate trucking company against plaintiff's claims that she was injured when walking through loading deck as a result of defendant's negligent loading operations. Defended Carmack cargo claims asserted by shipper against client carrier where evidence reflected that shipper could not establish a prima facie Carmack claim and bill of lading included specific limitations of liability. In a stipulated liability case, successfully used plaintiff's own social media accounts to establish that plaintiff's damages were overstated, that plaintiff had made inaccurate representations to treating physicians, and that plaintiff's damage claims were unsupported by medical evidence.. Litigation Business Recovered millions of dollars for client bank based upon Guaranty executed by borrowers in a highly disputed case involving allegations of fraudulent representation and unjust enrichment. Successfully domesticated and prosecuted Sister State Judgment against Judgment debtor who claimed that the basis of the Judgment was invalid, overstated and in violation of the debtors due process rights. Prevailed on Motion to Vacate Judgment and enforced judgment against debtors, recovering several hundred thousand dollars for client. Defended Chief Executive Officer of corporation sued for fraudulent transfer, alter ego, and violations of various provisions of California law. Obtained favorable settlement for the client after establishing that plaintiff's claims were unsupported by evidence, leading to an outright dismissal of the client from the lawsuit. Defended corporate executive in a case where he was being sued by a prior employer for the alleged misappropriate of trade secrets. Obtained dismissal of the complaint against the client and successfully obtained six-figure settlement against the prior employer in favor of the client for unpaid wages, unjust enrichment and fraud. Represented Special Servicers on bank loans in pre-judgment and post-judgment creditors' remedies, including domestication of Judgments, wage garnishments, judgment debtor examinations and attachments to property. Recovered in excess of $1,000,000 on behalf of a financial institution prior to trial in a highly litigated and contentious claim involving approximately a dozen guarantors. Successfully defended client accused of the fraudulent misappropriation and transfer of assets that were allegedly subject to collection by creditors. In pre-litigation posture, obtained a Release of claims against the client and recovery of a substantial sum improperly held by claimant creditors from client. Prosecuted claim for unpaid wages brought by client and obtained favorable settlement of the claim before action was subject to litigation in the Superior Court. Directed team of attorneys in Nevada in the prosecution and recovery of hundreds of thousands of dollars in deficiency judgments against defaulted borrowers on multi-family residential property subject to Guaranty. Transaction Corporate Represented a large national corporation in lease dispute where the client sought to be freed from a highly unfavorable lease agreement for a large area of commercial property. Obtained more favorable lease terms for the client allowing the business to meet immediate goals. Successfully established receivership in contested case where borrower sought to challenge terms, conditions and application of the Deed of Trust. Successfully represented Mobilehome Park owner and operator in a series of lawsuits related to California's Mobilehome Residency Law, including Purchase Finance Agreements and compliance with federal lending regulations.
4 Serve as outside general counsel to companies, including closely held corporations and Limited Liability Companies engaged in business in California. Guide and advise client companies on matters ranging from business formation, to non-disclosure agreements, and dissolution under the California Revised Uniform Limited Liability Company Act. Bankruptcy Successfully represented creditor in Chapter 7 bankruptcy case by establishing, during 341(a) meeting of creditors that the debtors schedule of assets was incomplete, had misrepresented the value of assets, and had overstated the reasonable expenses claimed in the schedules filed with the bankruptcy petition. Successfully represented creditors in Chapter 13 bankruptcy cases, including by obtaining favorable settlement of the claim triggering the bankruptcy claim, thereby avoiding protracted and expensive bankruptcy litigation. Recovered a significant sum in disputed Chapter 7 bankruptcy case where the debtors improperly attempted to transfer and hide assets through various Limited Liability Companies. Established that the debtors' efforts in this regard were improper and subject to reversal by the Trustee. Represented several creditor clients in disputed Chapter 11 bankruptcy cases where creditor client controlled the unsecured creditor class, thereby controlling the ability of the debtors to secure a consent plan for reorganization. Litigation General Liability In a subrogation action, plaintiff insurer contended that their insured had suffered water damage as a result of the negligent installation of home appliances by defendant motor carrier/installer. Successfully defended client responsible for the transportation and installation of free-standing shelving at retailer in a claim where plaintiff was injured by shelving. Obtained resolution of the case before trial after establishing that shelving had been improperly manufactured and that defendant client was entitled to defense and indemnity from manufacturer. Successfully prosecuted lawsuit against a major retailer for personal injuries suffered by minor plaintiff client when portions of a display case collapsed on the plaintiff, causing personal injury and permanent disfigurement. Established that the retailer had failed to maintain the property causing the injury to the plaintiff. Obtained settlement of claim less than 30 days into litigation after establishing that plaintiff's insured's damages were excessive and not reasonably related to alleged water damage caused on the premises. Plaintiff claimed to have been wrongfully evicted from plaintiff's residence at a mobilehome park. Successfully prevailed on a Special Motion to Strike the Complaint as SLAPP pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure as the complaint arose from defendant client's protected petitioning activities in closing the mobilehome park. Defended client mobilehome park owner against claims of discrimination arising from eviction of plaintiff tenants where substantial evidence presented to the Court reflected that the tenants were evicted for violating park rules and regulations. Obtained Summary Judgment in favor of client County where plaintiff allegedly suffered a trip and fall on public property. Established that the County was not liable because the rise in the concrete sidewalk was, as a matter of law, a trivial defect.
5 PUBLISHED CASES Business Litigation Wells Fargo v. Baker (2012) 204 Cal.App.4th 1063 A national bank sued California residents in Iowa and served them via substitute service with the Iowa Secretary of State as allowed by Iowa's long-arm statute. The national bank obtained a default judgment against the California residents in Iowa and registered that judgment in California pursuant to California's Sister State and Foreign Money-Judgments Act. The California residents filed a Motion to Vacate the judgment on the grounds that the national bank improperly availed itself of Iowa's long-arm statute as the bank was not a "resident of Iowa" and thus could not utilize the long-arm statute for service of process. The superior court granted the motion and vacated the Iowa judgment. The Court of Appeal reversed and remanded, holding that the requirement that foreign corporations hold a certificate of authority to qualify as a "resident of Iowa," as it pertained to national banks, was preempted by the National Bank Act because it infringed upon the power of a national bank to sue as fully as natural persons. The Court further held that the Iowa statute, as interpreted by the lower court, would impermissibly discriminate against national banks in favor of local banks, again in violation of the National Bank Act. The California Court of Appeals reversed the superior court and ordered that Judgment be entered in favor of Wells Fargo for $998, BAR ADMISSIONS California, 2006 U.S. District Court Central District of California U.S. District Court Southern District of California U.S. District Court Eastern District of California U.S. District Court Northern District of California PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS AND MEMBERSHIPS Super Lawyers Rising Stars: Super Lawyers Rising Stars Southern California 2015 Top 100 Defense Research Institute Trucking Law Committee Defense Research Institute New to Trucking / Young Lawyers Specialized Litigation Group (Chair) American Bar Association Commercial Transportation Litigation Committee (Vice-Chair) The Transportation & Logistics Council Trucking Industry Defense Association Transportation Lawyers Association California Moving & Storage Association American Bankruptcy Institute Los Angeles County Bar Association Association of Southern California Defense Counsel Publications 2015 DRI Trucking Committee New to Trucking Primer: "Assembling and Disassembling the Deposition of a Vocational Rehabilitation Expert." ALFA International TRANSPORTATION UPDATE Volume 2010, Issue 2 (SPRING): "CSA 2010: The Good, The Bad, The Unknown"
6 Speaking Engagements 2015 DRI Trucking Committee New to Trucking Primer: "Assembling and Disassembling the Deposition of a Vocational Rehabilitation Expert." 2015 American Moving & Storage Association's 96th Annual Education Conference & Expo: "Responding to Catastrophic Accidents" American Moving and Storage Association Webinar: "Responding to Catastrophic Accidents & Natural Disasters" 2014 American Moving & Storage Association's National Safety & Operations Conference: "Serious Injury / Fatality Accidents" Vanliner Insurance Company Loss Prevention & Cost Containment Seminar: Panel Speaker on Defending Bodily Injury and Property Damage Claims
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