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Greenspan Adjusters Int. Loses Attempt to Disqualify Gary Johnson's Law Firm, Peretz & Associates Allowing His Litigation to Continue

·5-min read

Peretz & Associates announced today that The Greenspan Co./Adjusters International ("Greenspan"), a California public adjusting firm operating in various states, was recently struck a major blow by the Court in a denial of its motion to stall Mr. Johnson’s efforts to seek justice for wrongdoing by Greenspan and its directors/shareholders Gordon Scott, Paul Migdal, Steve Severaid, Clay Gibson, Drew Lucurell, Chris Lucurell, and James Warren. (the "Individual Defendants"). Greenspan and the Individual Defendants wrongfully attempted to disqualify Mr. Johnson’s attorneys, Yosef Peretz and his firm Peretz & Associates, from representing him in his whistleblower lawsuit of improper conduct, wrongful termination, discrimination, breach of fiduciary duties, and other corporate malfeasance. Greenspan lost its attempt to deprive Mr. Johnson adequate representation in the pursuit of his claims.

Mr. Johnson’s lawsuit alleges that following a major near-fatal automobile accident requiring a three-month hospitalization, nine surgeries and a lengthy recovery, Greenspan and its directors, including Chief Operating Officer Gordon Scott and General Counsel Paul Migdal, began to view Mr. Johnson as to old and physically infirm to continue working for the firm altogether, and acted in concert with other directors to wrongfully force him out. Greenspan promoted younger employees ahead of Mr. Johnson, including Mark Fratkin, an individual previously convicted of numerous felonies involving crimes of dishonesty and moral turpitude rendering him ineligible to practice public adjusting on Greenspan’s behalf.

Mr. Johnson claims that Greenspan breached its fiduciary duties, improperly misappropriated corporate funds, and committed other corporate malfeasance such as engaging in or sanctioning corporate monies for sex, strippers, and other illicit acts. Mr. Johnson believes that Greenspan and its directors maliciously retaliated against him after reporting a fellow employee, Eric Metz, for engaging in sexual harassment of other employees and inappropriate conduct against other subordinates. Mr. Johnson alleges that Greenspan’s directors dismissed his complaints and instead undertook a sham investigation that targeted Mr. Johnson instead of Mr. Metz to fulfill their goal of wrongfully terminating Mr. Johnson. Greenspan and its directors have been sued by another employee in a whistleblower lawsuit for wrongful termination due to hostile work conditions, racial and ethnic slurs, improper harassment, and other discrimination, and illegal conduct by Mark Fratkin that Greenspan wrongfully permitted to engage in unlicensed practice of public adjusting and unethical misconduct.

Greenspan argued in its motion that Mr. Peretz and his firm could not represent Mr. Johnson because allegedly Greenspan’s prior Vice President, who has also pursued his own claims of wrongful conduct by Greenspan, disclosed information protected by the attorney-client privilege to Mr. Peretz, which has no basis. Greenspan, Mr. Johnson contends, allowed Mr. Fratkin’s illegal activity to continue unfettered. Mr. Johnson’s lawsuit can be found HERE — Case No. CGC-20-583239.

Greenspan lost its attempt to deny Mr. Johnson representation by his attorneys. In his ruling, San Francisco Superior Court Judge Schulman disagreed with Greenspan and found that Greenspan provided "no significant evidence to show that [Greenspan’s Vice President] has confidential information or provided confidential information that is material to Johnson's lawsuit against Greenspan." Greenspan failed to establish that any confidential or privileged information to which he had access was material to the claims and allegations in the instant case" filed by Mr. Johnson. The Court denied Greenspan’s efforts to stall the litigation and stated that "[t]he mere fact that counsel is representing one of defendants' former in-house counsel does not constitute grounds for disqualification, nor does it meet defendants' burden to show that counsel has acquired confidential or privileged information material to the present litigation," the Court ruled. A copy of the Court’s full ruling can be found HERE. Greenspan’s attempts to hide its wrongdoing failed and its claims to deep-six the damaging facts was rejected by the Court.

Mr. Johnson’s lawsuit of discrimination and wrongful termination and other wrongdoing against Greenspan Adjusters International and the Individual Defendants is not over. Recently, Mr. Johnson dismissed from his lawsuit a portion of his claims against Greenspan alleging violations of California employment discrimination laws, after the Court ordered that those claims were required to proceed to private arbitration. Mr. Johnson preserved his non-employment related claims against Greenspan in his lawsuit that alleges violations of fiduciary duties owed to him or others as a shareholder of Greenspan.

These allegations include the claim that Greenspan’s employment of Mr. Fratkin as a de facto officer and director of sales and operations was illegal and tantamount to the unauthorized practice of public adjusting due to his prior felony convictions for crimes of dishonesty and moral turpitude. Mr. Johnson also alleged that Greenspan’s directors misappropriated significant sums from the company for their own purposes, including "funding personal trips, purchasing prostitutes, [and] holding extravagant parties in strip clubs during which lap dances and other sexual acts were paid for with corporate funds." These and other claims of corporate and individual wrongdoing will continue to be vigorously litigated in the San Francisco Superior Court.

Separately, Mr. Johnson’s employment claims will continue in private arbitration. The arbitration will encompass Mr. Johnson’s allegations that he was wrongfully terminated from Greenspan due to his age and disability and whistleblower activities. They will also address Mr. Johnson’s claims that Greenspan retaliated against him and deliberately refused to pay him millions in commissions and bonuses rightfully earned, among other large payments; and failed to reimburse him for expenses that Greenspan was required to do so under California law. Peretz & Associates intends to vigorously advocate and seek justice for its clients against Greenspan Adjusters International’s bullying tactics, wrongdoing, and unethical conduct.

For more information concerning these lawsuits, contact Yosef Peretz at (415) 732-3777 or via email at yperetz@peretzlaw.com.

View source version on businesswire.com: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20210126005967/en/

Contacts

Yosef Peretz
(415) 732-3777
yperetz@peretzlaw.com