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BB&L Attorneys Recognized 2021 Best Lawyers in America© & Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch
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August 20, 2020 – BB&L is pleased to congratulate our attorneys who have been recognized in The Best Lawyers in America© 2021, an award based entirely on peer-review. This year marks the inaugural year of Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch award.  Those recognized as Ones to Watch are at a stage in their legal careers that warrant recognition for outstanding professional excellence in private practice. All of our attorneys, together with our talented legal support and administrative professionals, have done an excellent job representing BB&L’s clients and overall practice. Congratulations to the following BB&L attorneys on their recognition:

2021 Best Lawyers®:

Jennifer Crisera
Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants
Elizabeth A. Leedom
Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants
William J. Leedom
Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants
Michael Madden
Appellate Practice
Litigation – Health Care
Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants
Amy M. Magnano
Health Care Law
Litigation – Health Care
Bruce W. Megard, Jr.
Litigation – Health Care
Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants
Caroline E. Greene
Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants

2021 Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch

Jenny M. Churas
Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants
Product Liability Litigation – Defendants
Amy J. DeLisa
Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants
Jonathan S. Litner
Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants
Michael J. Madderra
Product Liability Litigation – Defendants
Eric R. Byrd
Insurance Law
Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants

BB&L Attorneys Recognized as 2020 Super Lawyers and Rising Stars
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July 16, 2020 – BB&L extends sincere congratulations to its attorneys selected as 2020 Super Lawyers® and Rising Stars®. We want to especially recognize Elizabeth Leedom, who was also named a Top 100 Lawyer and, for the fourteenth time, Top 50 Women Lawyer. All of our attorneys, together with our talented legal support and administrative professionals, have done an excellent job representing BB&L’s clients and overall practice. The following BB&L lawyers were recognized:

2020 Super Lawyers®: Jennifer Crisera, Amy Forbis, Rhianna Fronapfel, Elizabeth Leedom, William Leedom, Mike Madden, Amy Magnano, Bruce Megard, Jennifer Moore, Carol Sue Janes, Jenny Churas, David Norman

2020 Rising Stars®: Lauren Martin, Erin Seeberger

Elizabeth Leedom Receives 2020 Industry Defender Award
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On May 11, 2020, Elizabeth Leedom was named a recipient of the 2020 Industry Defender Award (IDA) by the Board of Directors of the Medical Professional Liability (MPL) Association. This award is presented to individual defense attorneys who have made outstanding lifelong contributions to defending physicians, other healthcare professionals, hospitals, and clinics, and their exceptional work on behalf of medical liability insurers.

Liz was nominated for this award by Physicians Insurance for her years of stellar representation of its insureds, its knowledge of the work she has done throughout the legal community, and its overall respect for her.

Brian K. Atchinson, President and CEO of the MPL Association, released a statement acknowledging this year’s IDA recipients. “Our legal colleagues play a key role in the defense of care delivery. Through their work with medical professional liability companies and indemnifiers, [they] have been valuable partners through their effective representation of physicians, healthcare practices, and hospitals. Both recipients personify excellence in the field.”

Bennett Bigelow & Leedom is please to congratulate Liz on this well-deserved recognition.

 

The full press release from the MPL Association is available here.

Plaintiff v. Physician Group
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November 1, 2019 – Congratulations to Jennifer Crisera, Sarah Silverman, and the rest of the BB&L team for a defense verdict in favor of their client, a defendant surgeon group. The case centered on an allegation that the surgeon failed to appropriately repair a portion of a patient’s injury, causing incontinence and an additional surgery. After a two-week trial, the jury returned a unanimous verdict in favor of defendant. (Pierce County Superior Court, Case No. 17-2-13831-8).

Plaintiffs v. Health Organization
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October 23, 2019 – Congratulations to Bruce W. Megard, Erin C. Seeberger and the rest of the BB&L team for a defense verdict in favor of their client, a defendant health organization. The case centered on allegations that a surgeon negligently performed a hiatal hernia repair and Nissen fundoplication surgery, as well as a revision procedure, leading to severe and permanent injuries. After nearly three weeks in trial, the jury returned a unanimous verdict in favor of defendant. (King County Superior Court, Case No. 17-2-11862-1 SEA)

Jennifer G. Crisera Receives WDTL’s 2019 Community Leadership Award
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October 22, 2019 – Congratulations to Jennifer Crisera for receiving the 2019 Washington Defense Trial Lawyers’ Community Leadership Award.  This award recognizes an individual who has provided substantial support and benefit to our community through volunteerism or pro bono efforts while embodying outstanding professionalism, ethics, and civic virtue.  Jen received this award for her generous contributions to her community.  In addition to being a trial lawyer and shareholder at Bennett Bigelow & Leedom, Jen has been teaching an eight week legal class to high school juniors and seniors for the past two years which culminates in a mock trial.  Jen puts substantial effort and time into not just teaching the class, but also preparing for class and coming up with creative ways to make the law interesting to youth.  In addition to her volunteering with high school students, Jen also does significant volunteer work with her own kids’ extracurriculars.  She is the co-team parent for her children’s swim team and acted as her daughter’s Girl Scout Troop co-leader for four years.  She also volunteers at her kids’ school.  Jen says that receiving this award has inspired her to do even more in her community.

BB&L Attorneys Recognized as 2019 Super Lawyers and Rising Stars, 2020 Best Lawyers
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August 15, 2019 – BB&L is again pleased to announce and congratulate its attorneys selected as 2019 Super Lawyers®, and Rising Stars, and to the 2020 Best Lawyers in America©.  We want to especially recognize Michael Madden, who was named the 2020 Best Lawyers® “Lawyer of the Year” Medical Malpractice Law- Defendants in Seattle and Elizabeth Leedom, who for the thirteenth time, was named one of the Top 50 Women Super Lawyers®.  All of our attorneys, coupled with talented legal support and administrative professionals, have done an excellent job representing BB&L’s clients and overall practice.  The following BB&L lawyers were recognized:

2019 Super Lawyers®: Jennifer Crisera, Amy Forbis, Carol Sue Janes, Elizabeth Leedom, William Leedom, Michael Madden, Amy Magnano, Bruce Megard, and Jennifer Moore.

2019 Rising Stars®: Lauren Martin and Erin Seeberger.

2020 Best Lawyers®: Jennifer Crisera (Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants), William Leedom (Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants), Elizabeth Leedom (Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants), Michael Madden (Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants, Appellate Practice and Litigation – Health Care), Amy Magnano (Health Care Law), and Bruce W. Megard (Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants).

Lauren M. Martin and Sarah S. Silverman Elected to Washington Healthcare Risk Management Society’s Board of Directors
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June 2019 – Congratulations to Lauren M. Martin and Sarah S. Silverman, who were recently elected to serve on the Board of Directors for the Washington Healthcare Risk Management Society (WHCRMS).  Lauren will serve as one of WHCRMS’ Western Washington Trustees and Sarah will serve as the Board Secretary.  Both Lauren’s and Sarah’s’ legal practices focus on medical malpractice defense.

WHCRMS initially organized in 1983 as a forum for risk managers and others within the healthcare industry whose professional practice contributes to the identification, assessment, prevention, and control of risk.  Bennett Bigelow & Leedom has been a long time supporter of WHCRMS’ core mission to “promote and enhance the professional practice of healthcare risk management through education, collaboration and member services”.  As a firm that practices in healthcare, we are pleased that two of our attorneys are giving back by serving on WHCRMS’ Board of Directors.

Plaintiff v. Physician
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May 10, 2019 – Congratulations to Amy DeLisa, Amy Forbis and the rest of the BB&L team for a defense verdict in favor of their clients, a physician and his practice group.  The case centered on an allegation that the defendant anesthesiologist failed to appropriately assess and manage the patient’s aspiration risk, resulting in her death.  After a one and one-half week trial, the jury returned a verdict in favor of the defendants.  (Clark County Superior Court, Case No. 17-2-02162-1).

Rhianna M. Fronapfel has been elected to membership in the Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel
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May 9, 2019 – Congratulations to Rhianna Fronapfel for being recently elected to join the Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel (FDCC).  FDCC Membership is limited, selective, and by nomination only.  There are slightly over 1400 members and includes members from each of the United States, Puerto Rico, Australia, Canada, and Europe.  FDCC is an organization comprised of “recognized leaders in the legal community who have achieved professional distinction, is dedicated to promoting knowledge, fellowship and professionalism of its members as they pursue the course of a balanced justice system and represent those in need of a defense in civil lawsuits”.  Rhianna joins William “Bill” Leedom who has been an FDCC member for over 30 years.

Elizabeth A. Leedom has been invited to serve on The University of Washington, Department of Medicine’s Oversight Committee for the Collaborative Accountability & Improvement
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March 8, 2019 – We are pleased to announce that Dr. Virginia Broudy, Professor and Interim Chair, Department of Medicine, University of Washington, has invited Elizabeth Leedom to serve on UW Medicine’s Oversight Committee for the Collaborative for Accountability and Improvement.  The Collaborative, led by Dr. Thomas H. Gallagher, is recognized as a formal program of UW Medicine.  Its mission is to accelerate the spread of Communication and Resolution Programs (CRPs) to healthcare institutions everywhere.  The Collaborative brings together CRP innovators and respected leaders in healthcare, law and patient advocacy to support effective implementation and ongoing improvement of CRPs through training, shared learning and advocacy.  Committee Members were invited to join because of their familiarity with the Collaborative and the CRP concept and because of their key leadership roles within UW Medicine.  Elizabeth was invited due to her deep content knowledge of CRPs, her long history of defending UW Medicine in professional liability claims, reputation in the legal community, and her external perspective.

Jennifer L. Moore Inducted as a Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America
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May 7, 2018 – This past weekend, Jennifer Moore was inducted into the Litigation Counsel of America (LCA).  LCA is an invitation only honorary society established to reflect the new face of the American bar.  Fellows of the LCA are evaluated for their effectiveness and accomplishment in litigation, trial work, and overall ethical reputation.  LCA’s membership represent one-half of one percent of American lawyers with its limited membership held at 3,500 members.  Jennifer joins three of BB&L Shareholders as LCA Fellows: Amy Forbis, Elizabeth Leedom, and William Leedom.  We are very fortunate to have leading trial lawyers serving our clients.  As a firm with a majority of women lawyers, we take seriously our responsibility to mentor the next generation of diverse and inclusive trial lawyers.

Plaintiff v. Medical Center
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January 25, 2019 – Congratulations to Bruce W. Megard, Eric R. Byrd and the rest of the BB&L team for a defense verdict in favor of their client, a defendant medical center.  The case centered around a claim of medical negligence for the acts of the medical center’s emergency department physician and physicians assistant for treatment rendered to a patient on two separate dates. Plaintiff, the executor of the patient’s estate, alleged that the medical center, by and through its employees, failed to diagnose the patient’s meningeal infection and treat with admission, intravenous antibiotics and surgical intervention, which caused her death.  After a three-week trial, the jury returned a verdict in favor of the medical center. (Spokane County Superior Court, Case No. 12-2-00325-9)

Rhianna Fronapfel Has Joined BB&L’s Shareholders
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January 3, 2019 – The Shareholders of Bennett Bigelow & Leedom P.S. are proud to announce the election of Rhianna M. Fronapfel as a Shareholder.

Effective January 1, 2019, Rhianna Fronapfel is a new Shareholder at BB&L.  Rhianna joined the firm in 2012 as an Associate Attorney, and has since developed a practice focused on the defense of healthcare providers and facilities in medical liability litigation.  She has not only an active trial practice but a growing appellate practice as well.  She has argued cases a number of times before the Washington Court of Appeals, and has briefed matters on behalf of her clients, and on behalf of amicus parties, before the Washington Supreme Court.  Rhianna is also privileged to teach the medical malpractice course at the University of Washington School of Law, and frequently presents to provider and administrator groups on topics related to medical liability.  Before joining the firm, Rhianna served as a Law Clerk for The Honorable Stephen J. Dwyer, Washington Court of Appeals, Division I, and was employed for several years at another litigation firm in Seattle, working on various complex trial and appellate matters related to personal injury, education, employment, and constitutional law.  Rhianna earned her J.D. from the University of Washington School of Law in 2006.  Rhianna’s addition as a Shareholder will continue the firm’s ability to serve our clients.

Plaintiff v. Hospital and Providers
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July 2, 2018 – BB&L Shareholder Amy Forbis with Associate Attorney Jenny Churas defended a medical institution in a medical negligence case involving allegations against the obstetrics providers and the hospital claiming a failure to meet the standard of care with a Trial of Labor After Cesarean Section delivery and failure to obtain informed consent for the treatment plan, which resulted in injury to the baby during the delivery.  After a multi-week jury trial, the jury returned with a verdict in favor of both the providers and the hospital. (Pierce County Sup. Ct. No. 16-2-07212-2)

Plaintiff v. Medical Center
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October 18, 2018 – Congratulations to Bruce Megard, David Norman, and the rest of the BB&L team for their defense verdict in favor of their client, a defendant medical center.  The case centered around a claim of medical negligence based on the alleged failure to deflate a Foley catheter balloon before withdrawing the catheter from a patient.  Plaintiff, the executor of the patient’s estate, alleged that the removal caused permanent urethral injury, permanent neurogenic bladder, and sexual dysfunction in the patient. (King County Sup Ct. No. 17-2-18430-6 SEA)

Elizabeth A. Leedom receives Washington Defense Trial Lawyer’s Outstanding Defense Trial Lawyer Award
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October 9, 2018 – Congratulations to Elizabeth “Liz” Leedom, who was presented with Washington Defense Trial Lawyer’s (WDTL) Outstanding Defense Trial Lawyer Award presented at their 2018 event that honors the Judges of Washington for their significant contributions to the legal community.  In receiving this award, Liz was recognized for promoting the highest professional and ethical standards for Washington civil defense attorneys and is viewed as an individual who promotes collegiality, professional decorum and the utmost ethical standards while practicing supreme advocacy for her clients.

Plaintiff v. Medical Center
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September 5, 2018 – Congratulations to William Leedom and David Norman, and the rest of the BB&L team, for their defense verdict in favor of their client, a defendant medical center.  The case centered around a claim of medical negligence against a board certified cardiac surgeon for temporarily losing a small surgical needle in the patient during a successful and complex multi-hour heart operation in December 2014.  The needle was discovered to be in the patient during the operation, but it could not be retrieved by the surgeons.  The medical consensus from the patient’s providers, including specialists providing second opinions, was that the risks of surgical intervention to remove the needle far outweighed any potential benefit of removing the needle, and that the needle was not going to change position or cause any physical harm to the patient.

 

Trial began August 27, 2018 before the Honorable Mary Roberts in King County Superior Court.  The jury returned a verdict for the defendant medical center on September 5, 2018, concluding that the defendant met the standard of care. (King County Sup. Ct. No. 27-2-08438-7 SEA)

Plaintiff v. Medical Center
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August 20, 2018 – Congratulations to Bruce Megard, David Norman, and the rest of the BB&L team for their judgment as a matter of law in favor of their client, a defendant medical center.  The case centered around a claim of medical negligence against a board-certified Otolaryngologist for allegedly negligently transecting the patient’s facial nerve during a complicated revision neck dissection for recurrent papillary thyroid carcinoma.

 

Trial began August 13, 2018 before the Honorable Karen Donohue in King County Superior Court   After the plaintiff rested, Bruce and David’s client moved for judgment as a matter of law on the basis that plaintiff’s expert failed to provide sufficient evidence upon which a reasonable jury could find liability against defendant.   Judge Donohue agreed with Bruce and David, and granted the motion on August 20, 2018, dismissing plaintiff’s claim. (King County Sup. Ct. No. 17-2-13370-1 SEA)

Plaintiff v. Hospital
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April 6, 2018 – BB&L shareholder Bruce Megard defended a local hospital in a medical negligence case involving allegations against the emergency department provider and the hospital claiming that there was a failure to diagnose a pulmonary embolism, which resulted in the patient’s death.  After a multi-week jury trial, the jury returned with a verdict in favor of both the provider and the hospital. (King County Sup. Ct. No. 16-2-09432-5 KNT)

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