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James R. Robie

  James R. Robie

Daily Journal - In Wake of Katrina, High Stakes Legal Storm
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James Robie (1949-2011) leaves the firm he founded with a long and strong reputation in the field of insurance litigation. From the time of his work on the seminal case of Austero v. National Casualty in 1976 to his work for State Farm on the litigation arising out of Hurricane Katrina, which was ongoing at the time of his death, Jim Robie was driven by his conviction that policy holders should be treated fairly, but should not be able to demonize an insurance carrier to unfairly collect more than they were due. His appellate work resulted in numerous published decisions, which established critical precedent for the insurance industry. He was a fierce, but always fair, advocate in trial, able to demolish a witness on cross-examination, when deserved, and always charming the jury with his ready smile. He was recognized as a leader of the bar, serving as Chair of the Litigation Section of the Los Angeles County Bar and as President of the Association of Southern California Defense Counsel.

Although he is no longer with us, his spirit remains; the lawyers of Robie & Matthai are all determined to meet the high standards set by James Robie.

The Los Angeles County Bar Association said it best in the proclamation adopted on January 26, 2011:

WHEREAS, James R. Robie was a widely respected member of the Los Angeles legal community; and,

WHEREAS, in his successful thirty-four year career as an eminent trial lawyer dealing with complex litigation, he earned the respect and friendship of judicial officers, opposing counsel, clients, and colleagues alike; and

WHEREAS, his leadership roles in the Los Angeles County Bar Association, where he had been a member since his admission to the bar, includes service as a member of the Board of Trustees, Chair of the Litigation Section, and Vice Chair of the Judicial Elections Evaluation Committee, which provides one of the most important legal and public community service functions of LACBA; and

WHEREAS, he was also an active and long standing member of the American Board of Trial Advocates, Federation of Defense and Coverage Counsel, Los Angeles Superior Court Arbitration Panel, and Association of Southern California Defense Counsel, where he was completing his term as President; and

WHEREAS, he exuded wisdom, intelligence, consideration, humility, kindness, inclusivity, charm and humor in everything he was involved in: work, play, time with friends and activities with his cherished family;

NOW, THEREFORE, be it resolved that, upon his sudden and all too untimely passing, the Los Angeles County Bar Association honors the memory and distinguished career of our friend and cherished colleague, James R. Robie.

 


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