Litigation Skills

Chairs: 
Nick Mattison
Nick Mattison
Casey Nash

New to consumer law? Not ready to try a case in the courtroom? Whether you have a case you are preparing for trial or not, we encourage you to attend the Trial Skills Workshop, which will teach you to effectively cross-examine witnesses to build your case. You can use these skills in depositions and in the courtroom. Learn more about the pre-training workshops on our website.

Why You Should Attend: 

A successful consumer practice requires not only knowledge of the law, but also the ability to handle the litigation challenges that arise throughout the life cycle of your case. From case selection to settlement, you need the right supports and systems in place to find and evaluate clients and claims, create a cost-effective discovery strategy, and prepare from the outset to argue your case in arbitration or trial. Investing your time in creating a systematic approach to your litigation strategy will help you achieve maximum success for you and your clients.

“NACA’s new Litigation Skills track offers consumer lawyers of all experience levels an opportunity to sharpen their litigation abilities. We plan to offer in-depth looks at the nuts and bolts of litigation, from the initial filing stage through trial. Attendees will leave with new skills to put to work immediately in their practices.” - Nick Mattison

What You Will Learn: 
  • How to determine whether the client and his or her legal problems are a good fit for your firm
  • How to create a cost-effective discovery plan to litigate your cases

Agenda:

Thursday, April 30, 2020 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm

Find clients and prepare your practice and business to fit your budget and caseload

Speakers

Lynn Drysdale of Jacksonville Area Legal Aid, Inc. engages in litigation and legislative advocacy relating to a variety of consumer finance issues. She was co-chairman of the NACA Board and chairman of the Florida Bar Consumer Protection Law Committee. She has been a contributing writer for the NCLC practice manuals. She co-authored a law review article relating to the two-tiered consumer financial marketplace with Kathleen Keest for the South Carolina Law Review. She has been asked to testify twice before the United States Senate on matters relating to consumer protections. She was vice-chair and rising chair of the Consumer Advisory Board of the CFPB until fired by the present administration. At the time of the firing, she was chair of its Small Business Lending Markets and Mortgage subcommittee. She has also been an adjunct consumer law professor for ten years at the University of Florida.

Kristi C. Kelly specializes in assisting consumers with credit reporting and employment background check mistakes, mortgage servicing errors, and predatory lending. She has successfully litigated hundreds of individual and class action cases in state and federal courts in Virginia, Maryland, and the District of Columbia. Prior to starting Kelly Guzzo, PLC, Kristi was a shareholder at Surovell Isaacs Petersen & Levy and worked for legal aid. She is a Board Member of the Legal Aid Justice Center, Virginia Poverty Law Center, and National Association of Consumer Advocates. She is also on the Partner’s Council of the National Consumer Law Center.

John Steinkamp

Monday, May 18, 2020 - 1:15pm to 2:15pm

Improve your ability to write persuasive legal documents

Speakers

Ronald Burdge

John Cole Gayle, Jr. founded his law firm, The Consumer Law Group, P.C., of Richmond, VA, in 2001. He has concentrated his practice in consumer law for over twenty-five years. His practice primarily involves lemon law, fraudulent contracts, and consumer credit problems. He is the chair of the Virginia Trial Lawyers Association legislative subcommittee on consumer law and is the past NACA state chair of Virginia.

Monday, May 18, 2020 - 3:15pm to 4:15pm

Draft and use dispositive motions to further your case goals

Speakers

Brian L. Bromberg is the owner of the Bromberg Law Office, P.C. in New York City. Mr. Bromberg is a member of the Board of Directors of the National Association of Consumer Advocates. He has prosecuted numerous consumer protection and fraud cases against debt collectors, banks, credit card companies, and automobile dealers.

Andrew Guzzo’s practice focuses exclusively on representing consumers, with an emphasis on litigation against internet lenders, credit reporting agencies, and debt collectors. His peers have recognized him as a Rising Star for the past three years, and he serves as the state chair for Hawaii for NACA.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020 - 3:15pm to 4:15pm

Create a formal and informal discovery plan to obtain documents and information you need to litigate your case

Speaker

Matthew Loker is the founder of Loker Law, APC and is Professor of Contracts at the San Luis Obispo College of Law. Prior to moving to California, Matthew attended the University of Toledo in Ohio where he received a Bachelor of Arts in Law and Social Thought with a concentration in Spanish. Immediately after obtaining his undergraduate degree, Matthew went to law school at California Western School of Law. While there, Matthew served as the President of the Entertainment & Sports Law Society as well as Vice President of the Alternative Dispute Resolution Society. In practice, 100% of the cases handled by Loker Law, APC are consumer related. Said cases range from defending consumers that have been sued by creditors or debt collectors to large Multi-District Class Actions. Specifically, a majority of Matthew’s practice focuses on the FDCPA, the FCRA, the TCPA, California’s Identity Theft Act, and false advertising claims.

Aaron M. Swift was born in St. Petersburg, FL and raised in Mechanicsburg, PA. In 2007, Aaron graduated cum laude from Dickinson College in Carlisle, PA, and then attended Stetson University College of Law. In 2012, Aaron accepted a position at LeavenLaw in St. Petersburg, FL, where he managed the Consumer Law department. In October 2017, Aaron decided to hang a shingle of his own, and Swift, Isringhaus & Dubbeld, P.A. has grown to four attorneys representing consumers throughout Florida. Swift Law is dedicated to fighting debt collectors and credit reporting agencies as well as mortgage, credit card, and timeshare companies. 

Wednesday, May 20, 2020 - 1:15pm to 2:15pm

Set up your case from the start to be ready to be tried in the courtroom

Speakers

Justin Baxter’s practice in Portland, OR focuses on consumer litigation with an emphasis on credit reporting and unlawful debt collection cases.

Lois Ragsdale has provided legal services to indigent individuals throughout her legal career in both the civil and criminal arena. Her career has spanned from juvenile dependency/delinquency work in New Orleans, to disability litigation in Richmond, VA, to a broad range of civil and criminal law in Jacksonville, FL. Since settling in Jacksonville, she has worked with Jacksonville Area Legal Aid (JALA) (currently as the Director of Advocacy and Litigation), the Fourth Judicial Circuit, Office of the Public Defender, and as a professor at Florida Coastal School of Law in the Experiential Learning Department. She is a past recipient of JALA’s Equal Justice Award (2001, 2013), JALA’s Pro Bono Award (2015), and JWLA’s Woman Lawyer of the Year (2006). She maintains her associates’ status for the Virginia and Louisiana bars. 

Wednesday, May 20, 2020 - 3:15pm to 4:15pm

Prepare your case to be tried in arbitration 

Speakers

William Peerce Howard

John Hendrickson is a northern California Consumer Law Attorney focusing on auto dealer disputes and warranty violations. After graduating from UC Hastings in 2001, he accepted an executive position within a large auto dealership group where he spent seven years. Entering the recession, he left that position to form his own consumer practice firm, using his knowledge of the inner workings of the car business for the benefit of consumers throughout the state, and has been being called as an expert witness by the San Diego District Attorney. He has initiated hundreds of arbitration cases on behalf of consumers.

David Ricci has dedicated his practice to consumer protection. His practice is primarily devoted to representing consumers in both individual and class action cases involving automobile disputes and abusive debt collection. He also represents clients in cases involving wrongful repossession, home improvement disputes, warranty fraud, and many other consumer areas. His cases typically involve violations of both state and federal consumer protection laws, and the UCC. He is currently the 2019–2020 Chair of the Consumer Protection Law Special Committee of the New Jersey State Bar Association. Mr. Ricci is also a volunteer attorney for New Jersey Legal Services organizations.

Tuesday, June 2, 2020 - 1:15pm to 2:15pm

Conduct an effective intake that determines liability, damages and workflow to bring litigable claims

Speakers

David Chami is a trial attorney and managing partner of the consumer litigation department at the Price Law Group. Between 2013 and 2015, David sat first chair in fifteen trials. Since 2015, David has either directly or indirectly managed the filing of over 250 consumer litigation cases. Nearly 50% of the firm's practice is dedicated to the FCRA.

John Goolsby has practiced consumer law since 2002 and has maintained a solo practice since 2006. His primary focus is on individual FCRA cases. Other practice areas include FDCPA, ECOA, RESPA, banking law, scams targeting seniors, and moving company scams. John works and lives in Saint Paul, MN

Daniel Vedra is a sole practitioner in Denver, CO. He has run a small or solo practice for seven years. He works primarily on FDCPA individual and class cases, medical debt, and general consumer litigation, including auto fraud and deceptive trade practice cases. 

Tuesday, June 2, 2020 - 3:15pm to 4:15pm

Determine reasonable search parameters for ESI discovery

Speakers

E. Michelle Drake is a Shareholder at Berger Montague PC, where she supervises the Firm’s Minneapolis office. Ms. Drake focuses her practice on consumer protection, improper credit reporting, and financial services class actions. Ms. Drake serves on the NACA Board and the Board of Governors for the Minnesota Association of Justice, is a member of the Partners’ Council of the National Consumer Law Center, and is an at-large council member for the Consumer Litigation Section of the Minnesota State Bar Association. She is a frequent speaker and author of continuing legal education seminars and materials related to her practice areas and has been repeatedly recognized as a Super Lawyer.

Michael Reese

Wednesday, June 3, 2020 - 1:15pm to 2:15pm

Determine the value of your case

Speakers

Amy Beth Clark meant to grow up to be an artist, but she was born prone to insisting on logic, facts, and fairness. Her daddy told her “You would argue with Jesus Christ!,” so she went to USC Gould School of Law. After passing the bar in 2002, she learned to beat up bullies in depositions instead of on the school bus, although she takes her lumps in court and arbitration as well. From 2006 to 2019, Amy Clark Law assisted consumers with debt and fraud issues in Southern California and across Texas. Amy is grateful and proud to be the new Team Manager of the Consumer Protection Team at Texas RioGrande Legal Aid.

Craig Friedberg opened his own law office in 1999. His firm emphasizes consumer protection law (debt collection and credit reporting abuses, automobile fraud, and TCPA), civil litigation, intellectual property (trademark, trade dress, and copyright infringement), arbitration, and mediation. He has participated in over thirty trials and more than 200 arbitrations.

James A. Kowalski, Jr. is the CEO of Jacksonville Area Legal Aid and is an AV-rated civil trial attorney and former prosecutor. He has presented numerous lectures in the area of consumer litigation and was named Consumer Protection Lawyer of the Year by the Florida Bar in 2011. Mr. Kowalski is a member of Florida’s Commission on Access to Civil Justice.

Wednesday, June 3, 2020 - 3:15pm to 4:15pm

Overcome common obstacles to obtain discovery you need for your case

Speakers

Nicholas Mattison is a partner at Feferman, Warren & Mattison, a consumer law firm in Albuquerque, NM. His practice includes individual cases and class actions against fraudulent car dealers, predatory lenders, abusive debt collectors, and other businesses that rip off consumers. Mr. Mattison has won judgments for his clients at trial and in arbitration. In 2017, he won a $7.3 million judgment against a payday lender. In 2016, he won a $10 million dollar verdict against an abusive debt collector. Mr. Mattison is a 2008 graduate of Harvard Law School. Prior to joining his firm, Mr. Mattison clerked for the Honorable Edward L. Chavez on the New Mexico Supreme Court and worked for four years in the Window Rock office of DNA-People’s Legal Services, where he fought for the rights of people living in poverty in the four corners region.

Casey Nash is a consumer attorney who represents consumers in a variety of matters, including credit reporting issues, inaccurate or misleading employment background reports, abusive debt collection, mortgage servicing issues, predatory lending, and TCPA issues. Her practice includes both individual and class action cases, and she has litigated over 100 consumer cases in federal court. Ms. Nash was named as a Rising Star by Super Lawyers Magazine in 2015, 2016, and 2017.

Emanwel Turnbull earned his law degree at St Hugh’s College, Oxford University, and a post-graduate diploma in Legal Practice from the College of Law in London. In 2011, Emanwel was among the first students to enroll in the University of Maryland School of Law’s graduate program, where he focused his studies on Consumer Law. In the course of earning his LL.M., Emanwel published articles in the Widener Law Review about consumer arbitration, and in the Vermont Law Review about the use of the “account stated” doctrine in consumer debt collection actions. In addition to his practice, Emanwel teaches law and legal history in the Legal, Ethical and Historical Studies division at the University of Baltimore. He is also active in the legal technology field, volunteering his time to help the Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service to build, maintain, and analyze a database of millions Maryland court records, in the Client Legal Utility Engine project.

Thursday, June 4, 2020 - 3:15pm to 4:15pm

Establish a good working relationship with your clients that is built upon achievable expectations and goals

Speakers

Bryant Dunivan

Heidi Miller is a solo practitioner whose practice area focuses on consumer protection issues, including illegal car repossessions, illegal debt collection activity, errors on credit reports, and student loans. Heidi is licensed in California and Wisconsin, as well as multiple federal district courts and the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. She is the current Wisconsin state chair for NACA.

Friday, June 5, 2020 - 1:15pm to 2:15pm

Prepare you case for appellate court

Speaker

F. Paul Bland, Jr. is Executive Director of Public Justice, overseeing its advocacy and litigation of consumer, environmental and civil rights cases, and other operations. He has argued and won more than forty reported decisions, including at least one case in the U.S. Supreme Court, six of the federal Circuit Courts of Appeal, and ten different state high courts. He has been counsel in cases which have obtained injunctive and/or cash relief of more than $1 billion for consumers. He has received a number of honors, including the Vern Countryman Award from the National Consumer Law Center.