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In The Media: Spertus Landes Hires 7, Opens Downtown LA Office

The two offices for the trial firm are technologically synchronized to work together as one firm, topping out at 20 attorneys currently.

The small western Los Angeles trial firm of Spertus, Landes & Uhmofer LLP grew in the last month, opening its second office in downtown Los Angeles and bringing aboard seven hires, managing partner James Spertus announced recently. 

“There nothing but excitement,” Spertus said Thursday. “We moved here to increase capacity.”

The move into the 8,000-square-foot space on West 7th Street was wrapped up October 15.

Along with the move, completed in order to be closer to the downtown courts, seven new hires came to the firm in the last month, led by counsel Elizabeth Mitchell, who came over in August after working as a deputy Los Angeles city attorney.

Chris L. Culver Wasserman, a senior associate, joins from Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP. Prior to that role, she worked as a law clerk for Judge Gary A. Feess.

Associates Payton Lyon, Lindsey M. Hay, Lindsay Enriquez, Lorien Giles and Jordan M. Zim also recently joined. Trial attorney John Hanusz was promoted to partner n October.

Spertus said when Matthew D. Umhofer joined in 2013 the firm went from six lawyers to 10. Partner Samuel A. Josephs joined in 2014, and the firm hovered at about 12 lawyers before the recent additions bringing it to 20. 

With its proximity to the courthouses as well as the Metro Los Angeles rail lines, Spertus said the expansion is not as much a restructuring as it is a growing collaboration. Its Westside office located on South Bundy Drive, is two blocks from a rail line, as is the new office. 

Both spaces have fiber optic technology and the new office features five video conference rooms. The interior decoration process is still ongoing. “We wanted a certain kind of space,” Spertus said. “We’re not siloed.”

He speculated the firm could be a 30-to-40 lawyer firm someday, saying if they take that step, it will be by design.

“We have a bunch of people who came here from big firms, who established themselves as independent,” Josephs said. “That’s unifying here.”

Spertus said they are ready to take on the five to six jury trials set for 2019 with current resources. He will consider hiring legal assistants or paralegals if necessary. One overarching goal is to see how firm attorneys can improve case presentations, Spertus said. All of the firm’s cases are high stakes, split between civil and criminal.

“I think the brainpower, just overall, and what everyone brings to the table is just amazing,” Hanusz said. “As someone who is fairly new to the firm, and seeing the growth that really started in 2013, it is really exciting to be a part of.”

 

Read the article at The Daily Journal (subscription required)