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Rex Heeseman

Hon. Rex Heeseman (Ret.)

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Case Manager
Matthew Levington
T: 213-253-9796
F: 213-620-0100
555 W. 5th St. , 32nd Floor , Los Angeles , CA 90013

Hon. Rex Heeseman (Ret.) is an established ADR professional who has led a distinguished career as a litigator and a judge. Prior to his appointment to the Los Angeles Superior Court in 2005, he represented clients in a wide variety of civil litigation matters for more than three decades. Until his retirement from the court in 2014, he presided at 93 jury trials, adjudicated in excess of 100 bench trials, and ruled on countless motions. His judicial experience gives him a unique perspective on likely judicial rulings and jury verdicts. He is attuned to the vicissitudes of litigation.

Judge Heeseman has conducted hundreds of mandatory settlement conferences, has chaired the Court’s ADR operations, and has a long history of resolving disputes either by settlement or ruling. He co-authors a leading insurance treatise, was for thirteen years an adjunct professor of law, and has been since the mid-1980s a legal commentator and MCLE speaker, bringing an academic, judicial, and practical perspective to any dispute.

ADR Experience and Qualifications

  • Mandatory Settlement Conference Judge
  • 34 years as a civil litigator in numerous courthouses
  • Responsibility for extensive civil court calendars
  • Pepperdine School of Law, “Mediating the Litigated Case” and other seminars

Representative Matters

  • Arbitration
    • JAMS arbitrations, completed with an award, with respect to:
      • earn-out distribution re: multi-million dollar transfer of intellectual property
      • allocation of monies concerning real estate partnership, which remodeled and sold high-end residences
      • claim against surety regarding construction of seven buildings on military base
      • purchase of partner’s share of insurance brokerage business
      • violation of certified pre-owned vehicle standards
      • appeals from single arbitrator decisions
      • Additional monies for theater completion
      • Large wage-and-hour demand by real estate salesperson
      • Law firm's demand for sizeable unpaid invoices
      • Legal malpractice claim against well-known entertainment company
      • Start-up dispute between founder and terminated CEO
    • As an attorney, service on tripartite panels involving foreign reinsurer’s funding of motion pictures, sales of toys, and claims for insurance coverage
    • Adjudication of 100 plus bench trials as a judge
    • Rulings on motions to compel arbitration and to enforce arbitration award
  • Business/Commercial
    • Dissolution of firms, partnerships, joint ventures, or LLCs
      • including assertions of self–dealing and mismanagement
    • Improper transfers of money or schemes to defraud
    • Agreements to start or to share a business
    • Business interruption claims
    • Misuse or taking of corporate assets
    • Mergers and acquisitions
      • including claims by or against directors and officers
    • Improper activities by agents or brokers
    • Tortious interference with economic relationship or prospective business advantage
  • Construction
    • Construction defect claims, as both a judge and a neutral
    • Supervision of Right to Repair procedures
    • Extensive alterations to large wooden gym floor
    • Modification of school buildings
    • Converting property to restaurant
      • including impact of delays
    • Conversion of warehouse into lofts
    • Shear wall effects on multi-million dollar residence
    • Water intrusion at high-end condominiums
    • Waterproofing of retaining walls
    • Indemnity disputes
  • Employment
    • Supervision of and judicial participation in CRASH I, II and III
    • Statutory violations (e.g., FEHA)
    • Wage and hour and related class allegations
    • Failures to accommodate
    • "Whistleblower"
    • Retaliation
    • Disparate treatment
    • Sexual harassment
    • Discrimination due to age, disability, gender, or race
    • Pregnancy claims
    • Awards of attorney fees and costs
    • Employment disputes with related insurance topics
  • Health Care
    • Hospital seeking reimbursement for its care of another’s policyholder
    • Responsibility for payment of policyholder’s medical claims
    • Computerized system for adjudication of pharmacy services
    • Insurer’s challenges regarding analysis of medical provider services
    • Mediation between dentists regarding buyout agreement
    • Arbitration for doctor’s claims regarding value of business at retirement
  • Insurance
    • Bad faith litigation and genuine dispute assertions
    • Extra-contractual damages, including “multiplier” challenges
    • Property, life, health, disability, and fidelity insurance
    • General liability, CGL, D&O, and E&O coverage
    • Auto, UM, and UIM matters
    • Contribution and/or other claims between insurers
    • Allocation among primary, excess, and umbrella insurers
    • Surplus lines disputes
    • Duty to defend controversies, including stipulated judgments
    • Topics related to Cumis counsel, including appropriate fee arrangements
    • Health insurers’ misleading advertisements
    • Broker malpractice
    • Agent and agency improper sales
    • Coverage for extensive petroleum leaks
    • Vanishing premium policies and other annuities
  • Personal Injury/Torts
    • Children’s monetary claims due to father’s fraud
    • Personal injuries at home of well-known actress
    • Medical and legal malpractice
    • Civil rights violations, including excessive force
    • Failure to properly train personnel, resulting in sexual abuse
    • Tire separation, resulting in deaths and major injuries
    • Extent of burn or brain injuries
    • Breach of fiduciary duty, defamation, and libel allegations
    • Tort claims with related insurance disputes
  • Real Property
    • Partnership regarding purchasing and upgrading of high-end residences
    • Dispute with surety relating to construction on military base
    • Extensive water damage due to city’s negligence
    • Fraudulent sales, often involving broker misfeasance
    • Foreclosure and mortgage lawsuits
    • Partition of real estate
    • Beachfront dispute regarding rebuilding of residence
    • Inverse condemnation due to electrical lines 
    • Improper removal of or failure to trim trees
    • Real property disputes with related insurance issues
  • Special Master / Referee / Neutral Analysis
    • Special Master for attorney fee recommendation after Superior Court's finding of contractual liability and "prevailing party"
    • During governance arbitration, evaluation of ordering the corporation's advancement of attorney fees for principal shareholder's "defensive" activities
    • Referee for monitoring of depositions in contentious personal injury litigation
    • Referee appointment by Superior Court to address various discovery matters (e.g., document productions) related to employment litigation
    • Served as Mock Judge in preparation for Ninth Circuit oral argument related to defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment
    • Analysis of tenant's claims in soon-to-be-filed lawsuit against the landlord
  • Recognized by Best Lawyers in America and as a Super Lawyer of Southern California
  • Attorney-Member, State of California’s Judicial Council
  • Adjunct Professor of Law, Loyola Law School, 2002-2015
  • Lecturer, UCLA Law School, 2002
  • Member, Ninth Circuit’s Advisory Committee
  • President, Chancery Club of Los Angeles  
  • Los Angeles County Bar Association
    • Chair, Judicial Appointments Committee
    • Chair, Litigation Section
  • "Natural Progression," ADR Profile, Daily Journal, January 8, 2016

Publications

  • Author, “Insurance Litigation,” The Rutter Group’s California Practice Guide
  • Author, "Do You Know If Insurance Covers Employment Claims?Daily Journal, July 15, 2015
  • Legal Columnist, Los Angeles Daily Journal
    • “Business Torts”
    • “Punitive Damages”
    • “Insurance Law”
  • “Good Faith Duties and Tort Remedies in Lender Liability,” 15 W. St. Rev. 617
  • “The Special Relationship Requirement for Bad Faith,” Los Angeles Lawyer

Speaking Engagements

  • California Center for Judicial Education and Research (CJER)
    • “Insurance” (4 times)
  • The Rutter Group
    • “Insurance Litigation Update” (annually, since 1991)
    • “Anatomy of an Insurance Policy” (5 times)
    • “Critical Coverage Topics” (3 times)
    • “Shernoff Bad Faith Seminar” (5 times)
  • California Judges Association/The Rutter Group
    • “Critical Issues in Insurance Litigation”
    • “Coverage for Employment Matters”
    • “Coverage for Torts”
  • Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles (CAALA)
    • “Trial of Bad Faith Case”
    • “Premises Liability”
    • “Government Tort Liability”
  • West Coast Casualty (WCC) Seminar
    • “Working Smarter Not Harder”
    • “Coverage for CD Litigation” ABA
  • MC Seminar
    • “Coverage Issues in California”
    • “Judicial Perspective on CD Litigation”
  • ABA Litigation Section
    • “Trial of a Lending Practices Case”
    • “Appellate Analysis of Emerging Business Torts”
  • Judge, Los Angeles Superior Court, 2005-2014
    • Chair, ADR Committee, 2009-2013
    • Assistant Supervising Judge, Civil, 2007-2009
  • Justice Pro-Tem, Second District Court of Appeal (Division 3), 2013
  • Partner, Luce Forward Hamilton & Scripps, LLP, 1994-2005
  • Partner and Associate, Adams Duque & Hazeltine, 1975-1994
  • Assistant and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney, 1971-1975
  • J.D., Stanford Law School
  • B.A., Claremont McKenna College
  • Captain, U.S. Army

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