The National Law Journal has named assistant managing partner Miles D. Scully of Gordon Rees Scully Mansukhani as one of the top trial attorneys in the U.S. in its “Winning: Profiles of Successful Attorneys and Their Strategies" report. Scully has tried more than 70 cases during his career and has been previously honored as one of the top attorneys in California. He is consistently ranked as one of the top 10 trial attorneys and top 50 attorneys overall. In 2014, he received a defense verdict of the year award for a toxic tort case.
The NLJ's "Winning" special report recognizes lawyers with at least one significant trial win in an 18 month period, January 2015-July 2016, when substantial damages were at stake, setting a large legal precedent, and/or overcoming an unfriendly jurisdiction. The 2016 report features 18 law firms, including profiles of 26 lawyers and their teams, selected by the publication’s editorial team. The list includes lawyers at Morrison & Foerster, Paul Hastings, Latham & Watkins, Fish & Richardson and many others from across the country.
Scully was profiled for his role as a lead attorney for a class action lawsuit against the firm’s client Urban Outfitters Inc. and Anthropologie, Inc. Gordon Rees Scully Mansukhani’s client was accused of violating the Song-Beverly Credit Card Act by asking customers to provide their zip codes while making a purchase in the California stores. More than $1 billion of exposure and a $288 million demand was at stake.
At trial, Scully lead his team in establishing their client had a standard series of steps employees followed when accepting credit card payments. In this standard series of steps, the registers prompted the cashier to ask the customer for their zip code after the credit card had been swiped, processed and approved, and after the customer had signed the screen indicating charges were accepted.
Through exhaustive cross-examinations of the plaintiffs’ experts, Scully and his team demonstrated the plaintiffs failed to meet their burden of proving on a classwide basis that class members used credit cards, not signature debit cards, and that zip codes were actually requested and recorded from customers, not by clerks entering the store’s zip code or random numbers to bypass the procedure.
At the end of the trial, the court ruled that “Defendants are the prevailing party under all theories” and entered a verdict against plaintiffs and class and in favor of the firm’s client.
A remarkable verdict for the defense that deviates from decisions in similar consumer credit card transaction cases: businesses having to pay out multi-million dollar judgments.
This verdict is among a series of class action wins for Scully in 2016 that include obtaining a full dismissal of two food labeling lawsuits filed against a national family-owned tea producer.
Scully holds Martindale-Hubbell’s highest possible rating (AV) for his lawyering and professionalism. Additionally, he was named one of Martindale-Hubbell's Top Rated Lawyers in Business Litigation, Mass Tort, and Energy, Environmental & Natural Resources Law.
To view the complete list of this year’s National Law Journal's "Winning" Litigators, published on December 5, please go to their website: www.nlj.com (subscription required).