“worth the money”

I contacted Mr. Sterns in regards to an ongoing issue, he was helpful and professional and although I was not able to hire this attorney he was still helpful and professional. If my situation continues I will find a way to hire this attorney as he is a person that I can trust to get the job done.

“exceptional & experienced attorney”

I have had the privilege and honor to work with Jerry Sterns on several matters over the years. He is not only an exceptionally skilled attorney, but has enormous judgment and sensitivity, which have lead to a long history of outstanding results for his clients. He is uniformly respected and admired by clients, judges, and other lawyers. I strongly endorse and recommend Jerry to anyone in need of a top rate, experienced attorney in personal injury or wrongful death cases.

“Our case was unique and challenging”

I am an intellectual property lawyer and I spoke with many persons and reviewed the bios of many potential lawyers before deciding on the representation of Mr. Sterns.

Our case was unique and challenging as the injury to our mother-on-law occurred midway on her journey from New Delhi to San Francisco. Hence, this became a challenging case because complex legal issues are raised under whats known as the Warsaw Convention. I can personally tell that very few attorneys are so knowledgeable in the nuances of this complex convention and the opposing counsel raised many arguments to limit our liability. Because of Mr. Sterns thorough knowledge of the doctrine he was able to properly advise us on the fallacies of the airline counsels arguments which frankly to a lay person as myself came across as somewhat convincing.

Mr. Sterns guided us through the case, assisted my 82 year old mother in law with her deposition and arranged and helped us through the mediation. Mr. Sterns is extremely well known in the aviation law circles and considered one of the most brilliant practitioners in this area of the law.

If it was not for Mr. Sterns’ pre-eminent legal standing, his careful preparation and due diligence, we would not have arrived at such a good settlement. Finally, his fees and costs are very fair and we recommend his services, in our opinion he was one of the very best lawyers we have had the privilege to encounter.
Aditya and Shakti

“He was just not the finest lawyer I have ever seen; a master in the courtroom, but a real friend who was supportive all the way.”

It is my privilege to write a brief note about Gerald Sterns of Oakland, California. A brilliant and caring lawyer who took over my case when it was about to slip away in an early “settlement,” that I did not understand or approve. In addition to suing the airline responsible for hitting me, I was in federal workers comp; the Department of Labor was controlling my medical case, and would be asserting a big lien. Mr. Sterns, who prefers to be called “Jerry,” took over my case, and worked diligently for over two years, resulting in a far different ending for me.

Let me outline the case. I was in my early thirties, high school education, some college, worked at Target and a Reno casino ticket sales for shows. When 09/11 happened, I had an opportunity to apply for, and was lucky to obtain a position as a TSA security officer. It was a demanding but rewarding job, with far better benefits and pay than anything comparable at that time in the private sector. Also opportunities to advance to other federal positions. I had hoped to move on to Air Marshall and then maybe even FBI.

All that came to a disastrous halt on January 2, 2010, when, on duty for final baggage security check at Oakland Airport, I was struck from behind by a runaway 1400 pound baggage cart, and pinned against a steel wall. I was lucky not to lose my leg, but the injury from the impact proved to be very serious. It required two surgeries, a lot of medical care, and a long and painful recovery. I also developed depression and PTSD. Even if I recovered from the physical injuries enough to return to work, I could not handle anything mechanical and noisy that would be coming up behind me.

But I did not know initially that my problems were much more serious. In order to return to or maintain my security job with TSA, I had to be able to demonstrate physical strength and ability to be able to rotate through eight TSA positions. Some had strict requirements: to deal lifting objects up to 70 pounds, undertake long periods of standing and walking; be able to climb stairs, bend, stoop and so on. I could not meet the demands of at least four of these positions. TSA could not accommodate me in “light duty” and I was eventually terminated from that service after nine years. My career was destroyed. And I had come out of this with probably permanent issues with loss of feeling in the right foot; weakened leg overall, and back issues, from an impaired gait.

On the legal side, my first lawyers had tried to settle the case early, even before my first surgery. The insurance company for airlines whose cart had struck me knew they had a bargain. Fortunately for me, it was not closed. But that put the “Mark of Cain” on my case. The insurance file flagged me as one who “reneged” on a settlement, and they hunkered down and fought me every which way for the next two years.

But Mr. Sterns persevered on my case; found the best experts available to document the link between the initial hit and all the ensuing problems, including PTSD and anxiety; all orthopedic complications, including the back and limp; significant problems and loss of earning power that would face my trying to reenter a competitive job market after being on disability for four plus years; showing my true economic loss; and most importantly, he somehow got though the double bureaucracies of TSA and the US Department of Labor to get a key deposition from the TSA HR, proving my limitations indeed precluded any return to TSA employment. Such federal employees normally will not be allowed to come to court and give testimony, and the insurance lawyers had bet heavily on their employment and rehab expert to prove that I should have long since been back in the job market, but earning just about the same as TSA. And as early as just 13 months following the original injury’.

Even after a year of hard work by Mr. Sterns, and the insurers budged up a little bit, we still could not settle the case. The insurers were still determined to show I was a “welcher” by not taking the early offer. And that I was a malingerer, And that most of my problems were due to early teenage issues. We went to trial. Case lasted three weeks. He presented a number of impressive, qualified experts, persuasive to the jury. And best of all, we learned later form the jury, literally destroyed the credibility of the defense “economic” and “rehab” experts. He commanded the courtroom, bonded with the jury; argued deferentially, but persuasively and successfully with the judge.

The jury awarded me two and a half times what had been the final and highest offer from the insurers, and four times more than what I had been pressured to take with the earlier lawyer. And Jerry Sterns continues to be there for me, post-trial. Arranged an very favorable tax free annuity with life income to give me long term financial security, allowed me purchase my own house first time in my life, money to maybe start my own craft and jewelry business and deal with the claims of the Labor department as well as my former lawyers. He was just not the finest lawyer I have ever seen; a master in the courtroom, but a real friend who was supportive all the way. He was my hero, and changed my life completely for the better.

Thank you,