December 13, 2018, Chico, California – – Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., the California law firm of Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman and the California Guild will host a town hall meeting and workshop for Camp wildfire victims this Sunday, December 16, 2018, at 1:00 p.m. at the Chico Guild Hall. The public is encouraged to attend this free event.
“PG&E has a long history of lining its pockets while ignoring the safety of its California consumers,” says Mr. Kennedy, who is co-counsel with Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman in the California wildfire litigation. “If we fail to hold PG&E accountable for its negligence and mismanagement, the company has no incentive to change its behavior and will continue to ignite California wildfires. If PG&E had devoted half the attention to fire prevention that it spends on arguing for rate hikes, Californians would have been spared enormous costs in death and destruction.”
The Camp wildfire was not an isolated incident. Since 1981, PG&E’s safety lapses have contributed to at least 18 other wildfires, gas explosions, and electrical fires. Some of these disasters caused deaths and injuries to California residents. All of these disasters destroyed or damaged property, resulting in billions of dollars in losses.
On Dec. 11, PG&E acknowledged in preliminary findings that electrical equipment near the site of the Camp Fire malfunctioned minutes before the deadliest wildfire in California history ignited. In a letter to the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), PG&E said a transmission line in the area “relayed and deenergized.” Shortly thereafter, a PG&E employee observed fire in the vicinity of one of its towers.
Flying over the Campfire, PG&E employees discovered that “a suspension insulator supporting a transposition jumper had separated from an arm on the tower.” Notably, “PG&E observed a broken C-hook” and a flash mark “near where the transposition jumper was suspended and damage to the transposition jumper and suspension insulator.” NBC Bay Area reported that the Camp Fire started “with the fracturing of a steel hook that holds up the insulators” on a nearly 100-year-old transmission tower.
“By latest count, 43 Guild families have lost their homes and hundreds of others are displaced,” says Bob McFarland, President of the California Guild. “We also lost two Guildhalls. Our goal for this event is to provide the community with information and answers to help them move forward.”
- How to handle insurance adjusters and claims to maximize your benefits
- Why a bad faith claim against your insurance company may become your backup plan
- How a civil lawsuit against PG&E can recover damages that exceed your insurance coverage
Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman is a top-rated California law firm with decades of experience handling complex, large scale consumer litigation. In addition to our main office in Los Angeles, they have satellite offices in Sacramento, San Francisco, Bakersfield, Ontario, and San Diego. They have assembled a highly experienced team of lawyers and law firms to protect the rights of people impacted by the Camp Fire. Their firm obtained the huge verdict in August in the first Roundup weed killer cancer trial against Monsanto. *
Diane is a board-certified civil trial advocate and one of the most experienced fire trial lawyers in the country. As Chief Deputy Arson Prosecutor in Indiana, Diane worked closely with fire investigation units, the ATF, various State Fire Marshals, and multiple cities and county fire departments to investigate and determine the causes of fires. In her 40+ years of practicing law, she has tried dozens of fire cases.
Cara has decades of experience litigating catastrophic injury and wrongful death cases stemming from mass disasters. Before she became an attorney, Cara worked in the insurance industry. This experience gives Cara the ability to communicate effectively with counsel for the defense and their insurance adjusters in complex cases.
Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman is helping Camp Fire victims in the following ways:
- Preparing and filing of insurance and FEMA claims for free (pro bono). Our team will help ensure that your policy claims are properly and thoroughly prepared, giving your insurance company or FEMA a clear path to honestly and in good faith process your claim.
- No fees on insurance payments that do not require litigation. If an insurance payment, satisfactory to you, is achieved without the need for litigation, there will be no attorneys’ fees charged against that payment. If your property insurance claims become disputed and require mediation, arbitration, or litigation, we will represent you for a contingent fee. We are prepared to litigate against insurance companies that dishonestly deny property claims or refuse to fulfill their legal obligations.
- We are preparing lawsuits as part of mass action against the entities that caused, or contributed to, the fire. Even if a homeowner’s insurance policy covers wildfires, the policy may not cover the entire scope of damages sustained because of the Camp Fire, including evacuation costs, medical costs, permanent injury, wrongful death, loss of animals or pets, temporary housing, and lost income, among many others. For many, filing a lawsuit is the only way victims will be able to recover for the entirety of their losses. There are no out-of-pocket or upfront costs or fees to clients. Our team only gets a percentage of the final award.
- We conduct our own on-the-ground investigation to be sure to trace back to each entity responsible for causing the fire. If any other party, other than PG&E, is responsible, we will endeavor to also hold them accountable. We will also assess the damage to each of our client’s property. On our team are two of our country’s top Certified Fire Investigators. They will, as part of the investigation, independently investigate the fire causes and origin, fly drones over the damaged properties, and collect other evidence appropriate to each individual’s needs in the litigation.
What: Town Hall and Workshop for Camp Fire Victims. Attorneys RFK, Jr., Diane Marger Moore, and Cara Luther will be available for press interviews before and after the event.
Who: Hosted by Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., the national law firm of Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman, and the California Guild.
When: Sunday, December 16th, 1:00 p.m.
*Past performance is not a guarantee or prediction of future results. If there is no recovery, then no attorneys’ fees or costs advanced shall be owed to Baum Hedlund or its associated law firms. The State Bar of California may consider this an advertisement.