Karen M. Sullivan

Partner

E ksullivan@wfbm.com
T (714) 634-2522
| F (714) 634-0686

Overview

Karen Sullivan has focused her practice for over 15 years on both product liability litigation ranging from consumer to industrial products and environmental litigation involving petroleum, diesel, benzene, diacetyl, asbestos, mold and other chemicals. She also has a proven track record in handling aviation, construction and commercial litigation.

Throughout her career, she has successfully represented companies and businesses by way of obtaining favorable rulings on complex and innovative dispositive and discovery motions and securing numerous dismissals through creative defense strategies.  Karen has extensive experience with law and motion practice and the handling of all phases of discovery (including expert intensive cases) in both complex and single party actions.  She has established a thorough understanding of complex scientific and medical epidemiology and issues resulting in much success during mediation and trial.

Karen was a member of the trial team featured on the Daily Journal’s 2013 Top 20 Defense Verdicts for its win in the carbon dioxide and petroleum exposure case of Gutierres v. Balch Petroleum, et al.

Representative Successes
  • Hensel Phelps v. Tremco – Summary judgment granted for product manufacturer client in a complex construction case where plaintiff alleged defects in a high rise condominium building.
  • Gutierres v. Balch Petroleum, et al. – Successfully secured a defense verdict after a five week jury trial in an carbon monoxide and exhaust fumes exposure case.
  • Sacoy v. Rust-Oleum Corporation, et al. – Summary judgment granted for client on failure to warn and preemption in a product liability case.
  • Garcia-Singer v. Does 1 thru 100, et al. – Demurrer granted in a solvent exposure case, which lead to dismissal with prejudice of the client.
  • Gregorio v. 3M Company, et al. – Summary judgement granted in benzene exposure case.
  • Billing v. Akzo Nobel Paints LLC, et al. – Summary adjudication of claims for punitive damages, breach of implied warranty and negligence per se granted for the client in an alleged benzene and other chemical exposure case.
  • Sample v. Flint Ink Corporation, et al. – Summary adjudication of wife’s claim and punitive damages granted for the client in an alleged exposure to printing chemicals case.
  • Vega, et al. v. 3M Company, et al. – Summary judgment granted for client in a exposure to printing chemicals case.
Industry Involvement

Professional Affiliations:

  • DRI, Women in Law

Speaking Engagements:

  • “Emerging Trends in Toxic Tort Litigation: From Hair Straighteners to E-Cigarettes” CPCU Conference in Wisconsin (March 2016)
  • “Hair Straighteners: The New Leukemia?” HarrisMartin Conference in Long Beach (December 2015)
  • “Recent Update in Toxic Tort Litigation” Chicago (September 2015)
  • “Benzene Litigation: From the Mountains to the Sea” Chicago and NYC (December 2014)
  • “2011 Year End Review of Toxic Tort Litigation” (New Hampshire (2012)
  • “Environmental Trends: Popcorn to Petroleum” CPCU Conference in Wisconsin (April 2011)
Beyond the Office

In her spare time, Karen enjoys running, snow-skiing, watching basketball and spending time with her husband and son.

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