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Jeff has been practicing law as a civil litigation lawyer for more than 33 years. Jeff worked in the Bay Area for many years as an associate at Alexander & Bohn (later the Alexander Law Group), several years as in-house defense counsel for a national insurance company)and then Needham, Kepner, Fish & Rickard, LLP, where he was a partner. In March of 2016, Jeff joined Habbas & Associates and with fellow trial attorney (and spouse), Lynne Coates, opened the firm’s office in the city of Rocklin, California.
Jeff has litigated all kinds of personal injury cases including wrongful death, catastrophic injury, motor vehicle, medical malpractice, dog bite, premises liability and product liability and just about any kind of claim related to personal injury. Jeff’s practice area includes all of California. He has also litigated cases in State and Federal courts in approximately 15-20 other states.
Jeff’s legal accomplishments include being named Trial Lawyer of the Year by the Santa Clara County Trial Lawyers Associate in 2008 for his part in securing a verdict in excess of $10 million, in 2011 for his exemplary work on a case that settled for $6 million, and again in 2014, for his part in a case involving an catastrophically-injured bicyclist because of a dangerous road design; the case settled for a substantial confidential amount.
Jeff’s professional activities have included serving as early neutral evaluator, arbitrator and private mediator. Jeff was also a longtime member of The Santa Clara County Bar Association and Santa Clara County Trial Lawyers Association where he served on the board before relocating to the Rocklin area. Jeff has been rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell since 2011, a rating that is obtained by peer reviews.
There is no question that Jeff thoroughly enjoys and works hard at resolving his clients’ cases by way of litigation or successful negotiation. His track record of relentlessly pursuing maximum recoveries for each of his clients is very strong. He has settled many cases for one million dollars or more and has collaborated with other firms in litigating class actions or mass tort claims that resulted in tons of millions of dollars being awarded to his clients. Having worked as both plaintiffs’ counsel and defense counsel, Jeff has a keen sense for what the value of a claim is and he knows how to get claims resolved.
When Jeff is not working for his clients, he enjoys time with his wife where they reside in the Sierra Foothills. His hobbies include bass and deep sea fishing and taking care of the property where he lives, a job all by itself.
Jeff earned his J.D at Santa Clara University in 1985. He is licensed to practice in all of the courts of the State of California including the California Supreme Court. He has also been admitted to practice in the Northern, Eastern and Central Districts of California, the U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit and the United States Supreme Court.