Gerald L. Sauer, Founding Partner

Areas of Expertise

A Sampling of Gerald Sauer's Cases:

  • With co-counsel Amir Torkamani, obtained summary judgment in a complex action in favor of their client, who was wrongfully accused of engaging in negligent conduct and unfair business practices that resulted in the loss of millions of dollars by a lender.
  • With co-counsel Amir Torkamani, obtained a multimillion-dollar jury verdict in favor of their client, including compensatory and punitive damages, arising out of claims for breach of fiduciary duty and fraud involving the sale of assets of a limited liability company.
  • In a dispute involving an arbitration and three separate lawsuits filed in the Los Angeles Superior Court, S&W’s client prevailed at the arbitration and obtained a decree that a limited liability company (a clothing designer) had been properly dissolved and received an award of attorneys’ fees and costs. Shortly thereafter, the parties entered into a global settlement of the separate lawsuits.
  • After a three-day arbitration, obtained a defense verdict and recovery of attorneys’ fees and costs on behalf of an investor in a radio station in a dispute pursued by a co-investor for fraud and breach of fiduciary duty.
  • After three attempts at mediation, and with only minutes to go before commencing a jury trial, offered a final “take it or leave it” settlement demand for millions of dollars on behalf of his client. Opposing counsel accepted.
  • Obtained a favorable settlement on behalf of a trade association in a case involving professional negligence on the part of the association's prior attorneys.

A Sampling of Gerald Sauer's Cases:

  • After a well-known film production company was cut out of a prior settlement arising from a failed video game project involving an iconic American singer-songwriter, Sauer and co-counsel Gregory Barchie obtained a substantial settlement on behalf of the company.
  • Obtained summary judgment on behalf of the studio, distributor and producer of a major motion picture in a copyright infringement action before the U.S. District Court in Atlanta, Georgia.
  • The producer of a major motion picture that received multiple Oscar nominations and awards, including a “Best Picture” nomination, had been deprived of any recognition in connection with the film. Obtained a substantial settlement on the producer’s behalf, including compensation and a “produced by” credit.
  • When a producer was forced to litigate his rights concerning his attachment to a project that became a major motion picture, obtained a favorable settlement: an “Executive Producer” credit and compensation.
  • Negotiated a complex settlement on behalf of his client, the 50% owner of a talent management firm, that resulted in the dissolution of the business and the allocation of proceeds, numerous film and television projects, a clothing line and a potential business concept.
  • In an arbitration convened in Toronto, Canada involving claims of breach of a distribution agreement, obtained an award of compensatory damages, attorneys’ fees and costs on behalf of an Australian production company.

A Sampling of Gerald Sauer's Cases:

  • With co-counsel Amir Torkamani, after a five-day arbitration, obtained a decree of dissolution on behalf of a limited liability company (the owner of a shopping center), who was appointed to serve as the sole managing member to wind up the business affairs of the entity and received an award of attorneys’ fees and costs.
  • Obtained a favorable settlement for his client in a construction defect dispute concerning the remodel of a residence in the Hollywood Hills.
  • After a ten-day jury trial involving a real estate commission dispute, obtained damages, attorneys’ fees and costs on behalf of a residential real estate brokerage firm,
  • In a construction defect dispute concerning a well-known spa, obtained a substantial settlement for the spa’s owner against the general contractor and sixteen subcontractors.
  • After several trees on clients' property were poisoned by the adjacent homeowner, obtained a substantial settlement.
  • After a two-day arbitration, obtained compensatory damages and attorneys’ fees on behalf of a homeowner against a general contractor on claims of negligence, delay, and failure to pay subcontractors.

A Sampling of Gerald Sauer's Cases:

  • With co-counsel Amir Torkamani, defended clients in a federal jury trial involving claim for copyright infringement of legal forms and argued post-trial motions that resulted in the trial judge striking the jury’s award of damages against the individual clients.
  • In a dispute concerning a software designer’s ownership of two programs and a “work for hire” agreement, obtained a substantial settlement on the designer's behalf.
  • In a case concerning the unauthorized use of copyright-protected historical footage and ideas for a documentary, obtained a favorable settlement on behalf of his clients, documentary producers, against a television network and the producers of a well-known show.
  • For a singer/songwriter whose song was used in an adult film without her permission, obtained a favorable breach of copyright settlement.
  • When part of his client’s script was used in a major motion picture without permission, sent a demand letter that led to a substantial copyright infringement settlement.
  • In a copyright infringement case before the U.S. District Court in Atlanta, Georgia, obtained summary judgment on behalf of the studio, distributor and producer of a major motion picture.

A Sampling of Gerald Sauer's Cases:

  • The producer of a daytime television show had suffered discrimination and retaliation concerning a medical condition, and was wrongfully terminated from her job. Sent a demand letter that led to a substantial settlement on the producer's behalf.
  • After the human resources director of an aerospace company attempted to rectify a hostile work environment and was wrongfully terminated, obtained a favorable settlement on the director’s behalf through a demand letter.
  • An executive for a national chemical dependency recovery program was constructively terminated after developing a business plan for a new targeted program that his employer appropriated. Obtained a substantial settlement on the executive's behalf.
  • After a ten-day jury trial, obtained a verdict in favor of an employee of a law firm and recovered damages for breach of contract and unpaid wages.
  • After a one-day arbitration, prevailed on behalf of his client, a consulting business. The business was awarded recovery of advances made to an independent contractor, plus interest, attorneys’ fees and costs.
  • After an illness that required two separate operations and a medical leave of absence, an executive of an insurance company was wrongfully terminated. Obtained a substantial settlement on the executive’s behalf.

A Sampling of Gerald Sauer's Cases:

  • Argued before the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in a case concerning copyright infringement of a legal form and damages. Co-wrote brief with Amir Torkamani.
  • Argued before the California Supreme Court concerning the interpretation of the anti-SLAPP statute, Code of Civil Procedure §425.16, and whether the trial court can excise allegations from mixed causes of action. Co-wrote brief with Amir Torkamani.
  • Argued before the California Supreme Court in a case hinging on the question of whether private conversations between an attorney and a client for purposes of a mediation are subject to disclosure.
  • Handled approximately 25 different matters before the California Courts of Appeal, drafting briefs and appearing at oral argument.
  • Drafted briefs and appeared at oral argument before the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit as well as the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in multiple cases.

Education and Prior Experience

  • Hastings College of the Law, University of California, J.D., Case Comment Editor, Hastings Constitutional Law Quarterly
  • University of California at Los Angeles, B.A., Economics and Political Science (Double Major)
  • Former equity partner, Greenberg Glusker Fields Claman & Machtinger LLP

Leadership, Membership and Honors

  • “AV” rated by Martindale-Hubbell, the highest ranking of professional excellence by peers in the legal community.
  • Recognized for obtaining one of the Top 100 Jury Verdicts in California in 2019
  • Leader in Law 2019, Nominee, Los Angeles Business Journal
  • Recognized as one of the Southern California Super Lawyers in Los Angeles Magazine continuously since 2005
  • Member, State Bar of California, Los Angeles County Bar and American Bar Associations
  • General Counsel and Board of Directors, UCLA Alumni Association (served 2 terms)