Best Lawyers® recognizes ten attorneys from Wisner Baum for their exceptional legal skills in its 2024 Edition of The Best Lawyers in America® and Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch™.
Best Lawyers is one of the oldest and most respected peer review publications in the legal profession. Recognition in Best Lawyers is based entirely on the consensus opinion of leading lawyers about the professional abilities of their colleagues within the same geographical area and legal practice area.
A listing in Best Lawyers is widely regarded by both clients and legal professionals as a significant honor, as it is conferred on a lawyer by his or her peers. Best Lawyers lists are created by conducting exhaustive peer review surveys, in which tens of thousands of leading lawyers confidentially evaluate their professional peers.
Best Lawyers states that chosen lawyers are “the best legal talent in the world, case closed.” As for the Ones to Watch, the publication notes that these attorneys are the “most elite rising talent in the country.”
he publication’s lists are created by conducting exhaustive peer review surveys, in which tens of thousands of leading lawyers confidentially evaluate their professional peers.
If the votes for an attorney are positive enough for inclusion in Best Lawyers, that attorney must maintain those votes in subsequent polls to remain on the list for each edition. Lawyers are not permitted to pay any fee to participate in or be included on the Best Lawyers lists.
Best Lawyers Honorees from Wisner Baum
R. Brent Wisner | Best Lawyers
Brent is Wisner Baum’s managing partner and senior trial attorney. He was named one of America’s 50 Most Influential Trial Lawyers by Trial Lawyer Magazine after building a reputation for taking on large corporations in high-stakes litigation and winning billions in verdicts and settlements.
His success on the first three Monsanto Roundup trials garnered national recognition for obtaining verdicts totaling $2.4 billion.
Brent was co-lead trial counsel in Pilliod et al. v. Monsanto Co. which resulted in a landmark jury verdict of $2.055 billion in 2019, the ninth-largest personal injury jury verdict in U.S. history at the time. He is the youngest lawyer in the United States to win a multi-billion dollar jury verdict.
Brent received numerous awards and accolades for his role in the Monsanto Roundup litigation and is now widely recognized as one of the nation’s top trial attorneys. After resolving the firm’s Roundup cases, Brent turned his attention to the Zantac cancer litigation. He serves on the plaintiffs’ leadership in California and Delaware state courts. He is also the lead attorney for the Actos RICO class action and the H&R Block, Meta and Google RICO class action.
Michael L. Baum | Best Lawyers
Michael is an attorney and senior partner of Wisner Baum. During his 29 years as the firm's managing partner, he successfully led the firm through thousands of wrongful death and personal injury cases stemming from major pharmaceutical product liability and commercial transportation mass disasters. He turned over the reins of managing partner to R. Brent Wisner in January 2023.
Michael litigates the firm’s mass tort litigation involving defective pharmaceuticals, medical devices, and other consumer products, all of which require extensive experience litigating product liability issues. His current focus is on the Gardasil HPV vaccine injury litigation and ECT– electroshock therapy injury lawsuits. He has and in-depth understanding of scientific issues, biomedical research, clinical trials, statistics, the pharmaceutical industry, and marketing.
Bijan Esfandiari | Best Lawyers
Listed in Best Lawyers since: 2022
Recognized for: Personal Injury Litigation
Bijan Esfandiari is an attorney and senior partner at Wisner Baum who focuses his practice on pharmaceutical product liability litigation. Bijan has successfully represented numerous clients in state and federal courts across the U.S. at both the trial and appellate level in personal injury and wrongful death cases.
Throughout his career, Bijan has worked on cases that shaped and developed the law to benefit consumers harmed by dangerous pharmaceutical drugs and medical devices. In one such case, the Court agreed with Bijan’s arguments and, in an issue of first impression, held that drug manufacturers owe an affirmative duty to warn of the risks associated with children’s off-label use. Bijan currently oversees the firm’s Gardasil HPV vaccine litigation against Merck and the ECT – electroshock medical device injury lawsuits.
Timothy A. Loranger | Best Lawyers
Listed in Best Lawyers since: 2017
Recognized for: Aviation Law, Personal Injury Litigation, and Product Liability Litigation
Tim is an attorney and senior partner at Wisner Baum, where he concentrates his practice on product liability and aviation and commercial ground transportation accidents which result in personal injury or death. Forbes Advisor chose Tim for its short list of the 10 Best Wrongful Death Accident Attorneys in Los Angeles, California in 2023. Best Lawyers selected Tim as the 2020 “Lawyer of the Year” for Personal Injury Litigation in Los Angeles .
He has substantial experience handling a wide array of legal cases related to commercial truck, bus, and aviation accidents. These cases often involve issues of negligent design, operation, and maintenance. His wealth of expertise in these matters, coupled with his diverse background in the fields of science and mechanics, gives him valuable insights for identifying and proving causation in accident investigations.
A veteran of the United States Marine Corps, Tim is proud to represent many men and women in the military in their personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits against aircraft product manufacturers.
Clay Robbins III | Best Lawyers
Best Lawyer Since: 2021
Recognized for: Aviation Law, Personal Injury Litigation, and Product Liability Litigation
Clay Robbins III is an attorney and shareholder at Wisner Baum. He focuses his practice on transportation accident litigation and mass disasters.
Over the last 35 years, Clay’s exemplary track record of success in commercial transportation accident cases has earned the respect of both his clients and his peers.
Clay has handled a multitude of complex cases throughout his career involving major commercial transportation accidents, including airlines, general aviation, trucking and boating accidents. He successfully represented the plaintiffs in an aviation insurance bad faith action that resulted in over $9 million in compensatory and punitive damages for his clients.
In recognition of his client advocacy, Clay has earned Martindale Hubbell’s coveted peer review rating of A.V. Preeminent (the highest possible rating for preeminent legal ability and ethics). The Los Angeles County Superior Court has also appointed Clay as a Judge Pro Tem.
Stephanie B. Sherman | Best Lawyers
Stephanie B. Sherman is an attorney and partner at Wisner Baum. She focuses her practice on product liability, consumer fraud, and dangerous pharmaceutical litigation. She is on the legal teams handling toxic tort (heavy metals in baby food), Gardasil HPV vaccine injuries, and the Uvalde school shooting.
An award-winning lawyer with over 25 years of experience, Stephanie has represented thousands of clients in a wide variety of practice areas.
Stephanie’s experience in high-stakes litigation has resulted in case results worth hundreds of millions against some of the largest companies in the world. Her track record includes toxic tort cases involving exposure to PCBs, benzene, and other harmful chemicals.
Monique Alarcon | Best Lawyers – Ones to Watch
Monique Alarcon is a Wisner Baum attorney and senior associate who focuses her practice on medical device cases, pharmaceutical drug liability, consumer fraud litigation, and police misconduct lawsuits. In addition to her work at Wisner Baum, Monique is also an adjunct Professor of Law for Loyola Law School’s Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA) Moot Court Team.
Monique successfully sued the Burbank Police Department (California) for police misconduct, civil rights violations, assault, battery, unlawful seizure, excessive force, and negligence. She also obtained a settlement from the City of Irvine when the city’s former mayor violated a citizen’s first amendment rights by blocking the citizen from posting on her personal Facebook page, which she was using as a public forum concerning official mayoral business.
Pedram Esfandiary | Best Lawyers – Ones to Watch
Pedram Esfandiary is a Wisner Baum partner and trial attorney who concentrates his practice on toxic tort injuries, pharmaceutical drug liability class actions, consumer fraud, and police misconduct cases. He was promoted to partner in early 2023, making him the youngest lawyer to earn this distinction at the firm.
He was an integral part of the trials teams in the first three Monsanto Roundup trials, which culminated in jury verdicts worth more than $2.4 billion combined. In recognition of his outstanding legal work, Pedram was inducted into the Verdicts Hall of Fame, and selected to Law360’s Rising Stars Top 40 Under 40 and Southern California's Super Lawyers® – Rising Stars. In 2023, The Recorder|ALM|Law.com recognized Pedram as a winner of their California Legal Awards in the category of Lawyers on the Fast Track (under 40) for his track record of success.
Pedram was among the first lawyers in the country to pursue toxic baby food lawsuits against several leading manufacturers. He represents families throughout the nation who allege baby food manufacturers failed to warn consumers of the dangerously high levels of toxic heavy metals in their products and that these toxic metals, including arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury, caused autism and/or ADHD in their children.
Adam M. Foster | Best Lawyers – Ones to Watch
Adam M. Foster is a Wisner Baum attorney who focuses his practice on transportation product liability litigation, including aviation, and commercial ground transportation accidents (involving bus, train and truck accidents) resulting in catastrophic personal injury or wrongful death.
Over the last few years, prior to joining the firm’s transportation accident legal team, Adam litigated class actions, including RICO class actions, and also pharmaceutical product liability involving the drug Zantac. He has earned recognition for his exemplary legal work from Super Lawyers®, the National Trial Lawyers, and Best Lawyers®.
Helen E. Tokar | Best Lawyers – Ones to Watch
Helen E. Tokar is a Wisner Baum senior associate attorney that focuses her practice on the firm’s Zantac cancer litigation and baby food cases.
She plays a vital role as the “right arm” to our firm’s managing partner, R. Brent Wisner, providing crucial support in the Zantac cancer litigation and overseeing the client and case management of more than 11,000 Zantac cases and over 3,500 baby food cases. Additionally, Helen is deeply engaged in the litigation process, from helping to manage depositions and discovery to preparing for trials.
Helen was recently spotlighted in Authority Magazine's "Power Women" interview series. This series showcases accomplished female leaders who share their compelling stories and insights on their journey through the realms of work, love, and life as a powerful woman.
Before joining Wisner Baum, Helen gained considerable experience handling cases across a wide variety of practice areas. During this time, she was responsible for a significant amount of personal injury cases handling everything from litigating, writing demands, conducting discovery and depositions, preparing clients for deposition and trial, handling mediations and settlement discussions, negotiating with insurance companies, and supervising case managers. Throughout her career, Helen has made many court appearances, including successfully serving as second chair in a jury trial for a personal injury case.
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$2.0 Billion Verdict Personal Injury
In May of 2019, the jury in the case of Pilliod et al. v, Monsanto Company ordered the agrochemical giant to pay $2.055 billion in damages to the plaintiffs, Alva and Alberta Pilliod, a Bay Area couple in their 70s.
$289.2 Million Verdict Personal Injury
On Aug. 10, 2018, a San Francisco jury ordered Monsanto to pay $39.25 million in compensatory damages and $250 million in punitive damages to Mr. Johnson, a former groundskeeper who alleged exposure to Monsanto’s herbicides caused him to develop terminal non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
$265 Million Settlement Fatal Train Crash
In 2016, Wisner Baum attorney Timothy A. Loranger and six other attorneys in the Plaintiffs’ Management Committee were able to secure a $265 million settlement for victims of the 2015 Amtrak 188 derailment in Philadelphia, one of the largest in the U.S. for 2016.
$105 Million Settlement Pharmaceutical Settlement
Wisner Baum obtained $105 million on behalf of multiple clients involved in a pharmaceutical negligence case.
$80 Million Verdict Personal Injury
Wisner Baum attorneys served on the trial team in the case of Hardeman v. Monsanto Company, which resulted in an $80 million jury verdict for the plaintiff, Edwin Hardeman.
$63 Million Settlement Paxil Pediatric Class Action
$63 million pediatric class action re false promotion of Paxil. Judge approves final terms of improved national pediatric paxil class action settlement – consumers get a better deal.