Business Insolvency & Creditors’ Rights

View alphabetical listings of Seltzer Caplan McMahon Vitek attorneys practicing in Business Insolvency & Creditors’ Rights below:

Christine M. LaPinta Shareholder

Ms. LaPinta is a shareholder with the firm. Her practice areas generally include defense of complex business litigation, construction defect, real and intellectual property, consumer protection, employment and bankruptcy matters. Ms. LaPinta also assists the trust and estates practice area in litigation arising out of those matters.

Education

In 1999, while serving in the United States Air Force in Okinawa, Japan, Ms. LaPinta received her Bachelor of Science from the University of Maryland University College, Asian Division. Ms. LaPinta received her Juris Doctorate from California Western School of Law in 2003.

Representative Matters

  • Represent various entities regarding trademark and intellectual property disputes
  • Represent multiple national retailers in cases arising out of the consumer protection laws, including the Federal and State Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, the Karnette Act, the Telephone Consumer Protection Act
    • In 2011, obtained defense verdict after jury trial on Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and Karnette Act and obtained award of all damages sought, including punitive damages on cross-complaint
  • Represents employee benefit plan of luxury hotel in ERISA litigation
  • Represents local developers, design construction managers and lenders in various matters involving litigation over property and development rights, contract disputes, construction defect claims and insurance matters
  • Represent clients in all manner of contract disputes, from complex multi-party business disputes to simple commercial contract actions and arbitrationsRepresents both debtor and creditor clients in various Chapter 11 proceedings
  • Represents employers in various types of employment litigation, including: discrimination, wrongful termination, retaliation, harassment, and benefit proceedings and disputes
  • Represent individuals and entities in trust and estates and probate litigation

Professional Affiliations & Admissions

  • Admitted to State Bar of California, 2003
  • United States District Court, Northern, Southern and Central Districts of California
  • United States Bankruptcy Court, Northern, Central and Southern Districts of California
  • United States District Court of Northern District of Oklahoma
  • United States Bankruptcy Court, Northern District of Oklahoma
  • Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal
  • San Diego County Bar Association
  • Association of Business Trial Lawyers, San Diego Chapter (Board Member 2013-present; Member of Leadership Development Committee 2011-2013)
  • American Inns of Court, Louis M. Welsh San Diego Chapter (Associate 2006-2007)

Personal

Ms. LaPinta served as a Communications System Operator aboard the E-3 Sentry in the United States Air Force. She also worked as a Case Manager for Big Brothers Big Sister.

Jacob T. Spaid Associate

Mr. Spaid is an associate of the firm in the litigation department.  Mr. Spaid represents clients in state and federal courts primarily in the areas of insurance, real and intellectual property, consumer protection, employment and corporate litigation, contractual disputes and general civil litigation.  Mr. Spaid also assists in probate litigation and other matters involving trusts and estates.  Mr. Spaid’s primary focus is developing creative, strategic solutions tailored to accomplish his clients’ specific goals.

Education

Mr. Spaid graduated from San Diego State University with a Bachelor of Science, magna cum laude in 2009 and was elected the most outstanding student of his class. He also received a Master of Business Administration, magna cum laude, from San Diego State University in May 2014. Mr. Spaid attended California Western School of Law and received his Juris Doctor, magna cum laude in May 2014. While in law school, Mr. Spaid was named to the Dean’s list and served as Senior Editor of Law Review. Mr. Spaid received the Diane Ethics award and the Law Review Outstanding Editor award, and received the top grade in Civil Procedure I & II, Legal Skills I & II, STEPPS I & II, ERISA, Business Organizations, and FDA Law. Through his second and third year in law school Mr. Spaid also served as the Honors Instructor for Legal Skills I & II, Constitutional Law I, and Torts II.

Employment Background

Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Spaid served as a judicial Intern for the Honorable Steven R. Denton in the California Superior Court, and as a judicial Extern for the Honorable Ruben B. Brooks in the Southern District of California.

Representative Matters

  • Represented publicly-traded retail company in consumer protection litigation
  • Represented publicly-traded retail company in employment litigation
  • Represented national real estate development company in development dispute
  • Represented national insurance company in multiple, multi-million dollar lawsuits regarding alleged bad faith
  • Represented international insurance company in multi-million dollar litigation involving construction defect issues
  • Represented national real estate development and management company in litigation involving insurance coverage disputes
  • Represented various local business owners (LLCs) regarding litigation among members
  • Represented various title insurance companies in litigation regarding priority of interests in property
  • Represented employee benefit plan of luxury hotel in ERISA litigation
  • Represented owner of California apartment complexes in defense of class action litigation regarding landlord-tenant issues
  • Represented local property owners in various real property disputes
  • Represented various local individuals in probate litigation

Professional Affiliations & Admissions

  • State Bar of California
  • Southern, Central and Eastern Districts of California
  • Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
  • San Diego County Bar Association
  • Association of Business Trial Lawyers
  • American Inns of Court, Louis M. Welsh San Diego Chapter (Associate)

Professional Awards & Honors

  • 2017 Super Lawyer Rising Star (Insurance Coverage), Super Lawyers

Personal

Mr. Spaid plays four different instruments and enjoys surfing, bicycling, and painting.

Dennis J. Wickham Shareholder

Phone:
619.685.3135
Fax:
619.702.6812

Mr. Wickham is a shareholder of the firm whose practice emphasizes bankruptcy, and business and real property litigation.

Education

Mr. Wickham received his B.A. from San Diego State University in 1976. He earned his law degree from the University of California, Davis School of Law in 1979, where he was a member of Phi Delta Phi and Order of the Coif. In law school, Mr. Wickham participated in the Law Review and the Moot Court Board.

Professional Affiliations & Admissions

  • State Bar of California
  • San Diego County Bar Association
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Claims Court
  • U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
  • U.S. District Court (all California Districts)
  • American Bankruptcy Institute
  • Federal Bar Association
  • San Diego Bankruptcy Forum (Secretary, 1997; Director, 1995-97)
  • Thomas More Society (President, 1992; Director, 1990-96)
  • Lawyer representative to the U.S. Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference (1994-96); Chair of District Delegation (1995-96)
  • Judge Pro Tem, San Diego Superior Court

Professional Awards & Honors

  • Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America (2007 – present)
  • Recognized in San Diego Super Lawyers magazine for Bankruptcy law (2007 – present)
  • Mediator of the Year, U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of California (1995, 2002)

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