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Francis E. Fernandez

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Partner

Asbestos Attorney Frank FernandezAfter graduating from law school, partner Francis E. Fernandez worked for several years as a labor lawyer for the California Agricultural Labor Relations Board, United Farm Workers of America, AFL-CIO, and the California Department of Occupational Health & Safety (Cal-OSHA.) During the next six years he represented the most powerless and unorganized segment of our community–criminal defendants– in dozens of trials.

At Kazan Law Mr. Fernandez represents workers who are seriously ill as a result of exposure to asbestos and other toxins. He advocates for persons against powerful defendants who refuse to compensate his clients for injuring them. Mr. Fernandez’s labor, occupational health and safety experience, and trial skills help him obtain substantial recoveries for clients.

One of the trial verdicts about which he is most proud involved an 80 year old widower who was diagnosed with mesothelioma. His case was resolved before trial with all defendants except one. Mr. Fernandez felt he did not have a strong, triable case against this defendant and offered to dismiss it in exchange for a waiver of costs. The company stubbornly refused our offer and Mr. Fernandez therefore tried the case, rallying together the best evidence he could. The jury awarded his client damages of $905,000.

In addition to his work at Kazan Law, Mr. Fernandez serves on the Board of a number of non-profit community organizations in the San Francisco Bay Area which help people who are having difficulty obtaining food, shelter, clothing and basic human rights.

Education

  • Boalt Hall School of Law, University of California at Berkeley (J.D., 1975)
  • San Francisco State University (B.S., 1971)

Bar and Court Admissions

  • California Bar (1975)

Organizations

  • Hispanic National Bar Association
  • American Association for Justice
  • Alameda-Contra Costa Trial Lawyers Association
  • Consumer Attorneys of California
  • San Francisco Bar Association
  • San Francisco La Raza Lawyers Association
  • California State Bar Association Legal Services Trust Fund Commission (1990-1994)
STEVEN KAZAN, Founding, Senior and Managing Principal
STEVEN KAZAN, Founding, Senior and Managing Principal

    Steven Kazan has played a significant role in asbestos litigation for nearly four decades. Mr. Kazan filed his first case on behalf of an asbestos victim in 1974 and since then has represented thousands of injured workers and their family members in court cases. He has dedicated the majority of his practice to […]

DAVID McCLAIN, Principal
DAVID McCLAIN, Principal

David McClain, an attorney at Kazan Law since 1983, graduated from the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) in 1969 and University of California Hastings School of Law in 1972. Mr. McClain has tried mesothelioma cases in each of the last four decades. He has never lost a trial—criminal or civil. Mr. McClain set a […]

JOSEPH SATTERLEY, Principal
JOSEPH SATTERLEY, Principal

Joseph D. Satterley has always been attracted to the practice of law. He firmly believes that everyone deserves to have quality legal representation and fights to the bitter end when his clients are facing tough opposition. He has provided compassionate yet aggressive assistance to clients for 15 years. Mr. Satterley is one of the most […]

GORDON GREENWOOD, Principal
GORDON GREENWOOD, Principal

Gordon Greenwood has made a career of representing real people. He began working as an Associate at Kazan Law in 1998. For more than a decade, he has represented hundreds of persons who either worked with or around asbestos containing products, or whose families worked with these toxins. Mr. Greenwood has also prosecuted claims on […]

JUSTIN BOSL, Partner
JUSTIN BOSL, Partner

Justin Bosl joined Kazan Law as a law clerk in June 2004 and accepted an associate position in February 2006. In January 2013 he became a partner. Mr. Bosl has been responsible for numerous cases, every phase of litigation, from initial client interview through trial. In addition to his practice in the Bay Area, he […]

DENISE ABRAMS, Partner
DENISE ABRAMS, Partner

Denise Abrams spent 18 years as a principal at Kazan Law until deciding to devote a majority of her time to pro bono practice from 2009-2012. Ms. Abrams remained involved in asbestos litigation on the firm’s behalf, and in January 2013, fully resumed her asbestos practice. She has been a mentor to Kazan Law attorneys […]

TED W. PELLETIER, Of Counsel
TED W. PELLETIER, Of Counsel

Ted Pelletier joined Kazan Law in September 2013 to run the firm’s appellate and motion department. Mr. Pelletier brings 17 years of experience in the trial and appellate courts representing injured consumers, including many cases on behalf of asbestos victims. Mr. Pelletier graduated with honors in 1994 from Hastings College of the Law, where he […]

FRANCES SCHREIBERG, Of Counsel
FRANCES SCHREIBERG, Of Counsel

Fran became a lawyer in order to help defend many forms of resistance during the height of the Vietnam anti-war movement. After practicing as a criminal defense attorney with a number of public defender offices, she taught juvenile law and supervised a criminal law clinic at the University of San Francisco School of Law. Having […]

ANDREA HUSTON, Associate
ANDREA HUSTON, Associate

Andrea Huston has worked in asbestos litigation since 1995, yet never ceases to be amazed at the terrible injustice visited upon asbestos victims and their families. She feels her purpose is to help these people in any way that she can. Ms. Huston was taught as a child that inequity was not only wrong, but […]

PETRA DeJESUS, Associate
PETRA DeJESUS, Associate

After graduating from law school, Petra DeJesus focused most of her legal career in public interest law. She represented low income individuals at California Rural Legal Assistance, Mission Community Legal Defense, and the San Francisco Public Defender’s office. As a senior Public Defender trial attorney, she has experience in all aspects of criminal litigation and […]

IAN RIVAMONTE, Associate
IAN RIVAMONTE, Associate

Ever since he was an undergraduate, Ian Rivamonte has devoted his legal volunteer, clerkship and externship work in public service. From non-profit organizations to local and federal government agencies, his experiences in each of these positions assured him that his calling in life is to help others in need. He views his work at Kazan […]

MATTHEW THIEL, Associate
MATTHEW THIEL, Associate

Education Golden Gate University School of Law (J.D., 2005) UC, Berkeley, (B.A., History, 1990) Bar Admissions California (2005)

MICHAEL T. STEWART, Associate
MICHAEL T. STEWART, Associate

Michael Stewart joined the firm in 2006. He mainly works on large writing projects in the trial and appellate courts. In recognition of Michael’s skill and professionalism, he was selected to Super Lawyers – Rising Stars Edition in 2013 and 2014. A recent victory to which Michael contributed is Scott v. Ford Motor Company (2014) […]

WILLIAM F. RUIZ, Associate
WILLIAM F. RUIZ, Associate

Education Loyola Law School, Los Angeles (J.D., 2005) Claremont McKenna College (B.A., Economics and Government, 2002) Bar Admissions California (2006)

MARK SWANSON, Associate
MARK SWANSON, Associate

Mark Swanson joined Kazan Law in 2012 and is grateful for the opportunity to continue to work on behalf of asbestos victims with a firm that has a long record of success. As an attorney, he has long represented people who suffer injustice or are otherwise disadvantaged. While attending law school he worked with organizations […]

AUTUMN MESA, Associate
AUTUMN MESA, Associate

In 2001, Autumn joined Kazan Law as a law clerk after she completed her first year of law school. Autumn’s time spent as a law clerk supervised by the dynamic senior attorneys with this firm helped to guide her way and mold her into the lawyer she wanted to become. Autumn knew she wanted to […]

JOSEPH NICHOLSON, Associate
JOSEPH NICHOLSON, Associate

Joseph Nicholson joined the firm in April 2011 as a law clerk. He received a J.D. from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law in San Francisco. Joe’s student note on civil procedure in the era of cloud-computing was published in the Winter 2012 issue of Hastings Business Law Journal. During law school, […]

RYAN HARRIS, Associate
RYAN HARRIS, Associate

Ryan joined the Kazan firm in 2012 after graduating magna cum laude from UC Hastings College of the Law, where he was an editor of the Hastings Law Journal and an active member of the National Lawyers Guild. While at Hastings, he worked with the American Civil Liberties Union and the Federal Public Defender to […]

CAROLE BOSCH, Associate
CAROLE BOSCH, Associate

Carole found her niche as a civil litigator, first at Hersh & Hersh in San Francisco, then at Paul & Hanley LLP and the Farrise Law Firm before joining Kazan McClain in 2013. Carole also has extensive experience working for the courts, as an intern for the Honorable Claudia Wilkin at the United States District […]

IRENA KIN, Associate
IRENA KIN, Associate

Irena joined the Kazan firm in 2014 after relocating to the Bay Area. Irena graduated cum laude from the Chicago-Kent College of Law in 2013, where she was a senior member of the Moot Court Honor Society. She graduated summa cum laude from DePaul University in 2010 with a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies. […]

STEPHANIE WARGO-WILSON, Associate
STEPHANIE WARGO-WILSON, Associate

Stephanie Wargo-Wilson comes to Kazan Law from the San Francisco Public Defender’s office where she served as a Deputy Public Defender since 2002. As San Francisco Deputy Public Defender, Stephanie helped defend thousands of people who could not otherwise afford an attorney. Stephanie graduated from the UCLA School of Law in 2001 with outstanding grades. […]

RACHEL BERKNESS, Associate
RACHEL BERKNESS, Associate

Rachel Berkness joined Kazan in 2014 after graduating from University of California, Berkeley School of Law. There, she was a member of the Boalt Hall Moot Court Team and President of the Consumer Advocacy and Protection Society. A former lead vocalist and front person for a well-established band based in her home state of Minnesota, […]

PHILIP A. HARLEY, 1947-2009 In Memoriam
PHILIP A. HARLEY, 1947-2009 In Memoriam

Our beloved friend and partner, Philip A. “Phil” Harley, passed away peacefully on Thursday July 2, 2009. Phil spent his last moments at home, in the company of his loved ones, his husband Mark Kalend, their daughters, Sara and True, and Phil’s mother and brothers. Philip A. Harley was a nationally recognized and certified civil […]