Edwin W. Duncan
Of Counsel - Ventura County
Mr. Duncan is of counsel in the firm and a member of the firm’s Litigation, and Real Estate & Business Law practice groups. Mr. Duncan has extensive trial experience-both jury and non-jury-in the California Superior Court and the United States District Court.
Mr. Duncan has been involved with California Lutheran University as a facilitator for the Mathews Leadership Conference. In addition, he has been involved in the promotion and development of the sport of competitive swimming in Southern California and nationally. Locally, he was a member of the Board of Directors of Southern California Swimming from 1981 to 2005, and has served as General Chair and Treasurer. Nationally, he was a member of the Counselors Committee for USA Swimming from 1985 to 2005 and was the Committee Chair from 1994 to 2005. Mr. Duncan is the announcer for the University of Southern California NCAA swimming teams, a position he has held since 1994, and is the announcer for the Pacific 10 Conference Women and Men Swimming Championships, a position he has held since 1995.
Mr. Duncan published an article in the December 2001 issue of the National Law Journal concerning the use of litigation budgets in managing complex business and commercial litigation. He authored a monograph entitled “Products Liability In California,” published by Arter & Hadden. Mr. Duncan has also published a handbook disseminated by USA Swimming concerning the formation and operation of nonprofit corporations for youth activities. From 1981-1985, Mr. Duncan appeared on several panels before the American Land Developers Association concerning the use and operation of trusts for land subdivisions and resort timesharing projects.
Mr. Duncan’s experience includes:
- Served as outside counsel for the Subdivision Trust Department of The Bank of California (now Union Bank of California).
- Served as lead Litigation Counsel in a large number of cases and has conducted more than forty trials, both jury and non-jury.
- Represented the manufacturer and seller of power tools such as compound saws and pneumatic nail guns in product liability cases brought in the United States.
- Represented the manufacturer of smoke and fire alarms in litigation arising from personal injuries suffered in a residential fire.
- Represented a petroleum company doing business outside of the United States in cases arising from the employment of California residents, accidents involving California residents occurring outside the United States and transactional issues with contractors located in the United States
- Represented the majority shareholder (a parent) in a corporate governance dispute with the minority shareholders (the children of the majority shareholder) to whom the shares had been given as gifts.
- Represented a manufacturing company in a lease dispute with its landlord in which the threatened eviction would have caused the company to go out of business.
- Represented the producer and seller of physical natural gas and financial derivatives related to natural gas who were the defendants in a horizontal price fixing case brought under the Sherman Act and the Cartwright Act.
- Represented the class representatives in a class action against an insurance carrier which fraudulently induced a class of approximately 780 California physicians to terminate an inter-indemnity trust. This case was settled after the jury returned a verdict in favor of the class for more than $150 million dollars.
- Represented a California Indian Tribe in litigation related to Indian gaming under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act and in litigation which attacked the constitutionality of Proposition 5 and Proposition 1A.
- Represented two Colorado public trusts in litigation arising from the failure of Institutional Treasury Management and secured the release of approximately $250 million in assets frozen by the SEC.
- Represented a California Conservation District in litigation attacking its acquisition of a privately owned water company by means of eminent domain. The court upheld the exercise of the power of eminent domain by the Conservation District and further held that the increase in water fees to finance the $25 million acquisition was not a tax subject to the provisions of Proposition 13 or Proposition 218.
- Represented a private water company in litigation with sod growers related to the dumping of excess irrigation water on adjacent land.
- Represented a food supplement company in an action before the Patent and Trademark Office to cancel its trade mark for a weight loss product and a companion action in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York seeking damages for infringement.
- Represented the FDIC and FSLIC as the receiver of a failed financial institution resulting in the recovery of assets from third parties in excess of $15 million and judgments against officers and directors of approximately $12 million.
- Represented a bank in litigation arising from loans and litigation related to resort timesharing trusts and recreational land subdivision trusts.
- Represented a bank in the subdivision of land and the hypothecation of consumer contracts to raise capital.
- Represented a securitizer of consumer loans in litigation related to consumer loans used in REMIC trusts to raise capital.
- Represented an insured in coverage litigation resulting in a favorable decision by the Ninth Circuit (unpublished) in 2008.
- Represented a sales company in an appeal which resulted in a favorable decision by the California Court of Appeal, Second District (unpublished), in February 2009 which will result in the recovery of $6-$8 million for the client.
- Represented an insured in coverage litigation resulting in a jury verdict in favor of the insured in the sum of $1,000,000 for compensatory damages in July 2009 and $3,000,000 for punitive damages in August 2009.
- Represented a sales company as the respondent in an appeal in which the Court of Appeal, Second District, in April 2010 granted his motion to dismiss the appeal of the other side as frivolous in a case in which the other side was represented by two national law firms and a retired Justice from the Court of Appeal.
- Obtained an award of attorneys' fees and costs in excess of $845,000 for a client in February 2011.
While attending the University of California, Hastings, Mr. Duncan was a member of the Editorial Board of the Hastings Law Journal and of the Thurston Honor Society, and was awarded Order of the Coif.