Tom Schultz has been an attorney for over 30 years, focusing his practice on representing plaintiffs in a variety of complex civil cases involving claims of personal injury, wrongful death, product liability and financial loss, as well as pharmaceutical and medical device related injuries.
During his career as a plaintiff’s attorney, Mr. Schultz has represented almost 4,000 clients and has obtained well in excess of $1 billion in settlements and verdicts on behalf of his clients. He is AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell — the highest rating possible for an attorney — and a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA) for his extensive jury trial experience. Mr. Schultz is listed among the Best Lawyers in America and is recognized as a Southern California Super Lawyer by the Super Lawyers® publication.
Mr. Schultz has received the following awards for his outstanding trial efforts:
- 2018 Daily Journal Top Verdict By Impact for Martinez v. Whittier Uptown Association
- 2017 Finalist for CAOC Consumer Attorney of the Year
- 2016 Finalist for CAOC Consumer Attorney of the Year
- 2016 Daily Journal Top Verdict By Impact for Newland v. Los Angeles County
- 2015 Daily Journal Top Verdict By Dollar and four Top 50 Verdicts in California for Casillas v Landstar (#3 in California and #21 Nationally), Sheaffer v NuCo2 (#14 in California), Rabb v State of California (#25 in California) and Gomez v Heger Farms (#37 in California)
- 2012 Daily Journal Top Verdict By Dollar for Sheth v Schneider National Carriers (#9 in California and #54 Nationally)
Since joining Panish Shea & Boyle LLP in 2011, Mr. Schultz has recovered over $800 million in verdicts and settlements, with over 100 cases in excess of $1,000,000 and 18 cases of at least $10,000,000 or more, including the following noteworthy cases:
- $160 million trial verdict for a traumatically brain injured client
- $36.5 million trial verdict for a spine injury client
- $34.5 million trial verdict for a leg amputee
- $23.7 million trial verdict for a leg amputee
- $22.5 million settlement for a brain injured client
- $20.5 million wrongful death trial verdict
- $20 million settlement for a man paralyzed in a bicycle accident
- $17.4 million trial verdict for a brain injured client
- $17.1 million trial verdict for a leg amputee client
- $15 million settlement for a brain injured client
- $14.9 million settlement for a leg amputee client
- $13.9 million trial verdict for a client with multiple back fractures
- $10 million trial verdict for the wrongful death of a three-year-old child
- $10 million settlement for the wrongful death of a 14-year-old child
- Over $10 million judgment following a jury verdict of $9.9 million for a leg amputee victim, which was the largest personal injury verdict in the history of Imperial County
In addition to handling individual cases, Mr. Schultz was the primary handling lawyer for several mass tort cases including a $200 million settlement involving claims against the pharmaceutical giant, Eli Lilly, for injuries arising out of the drug Zyprexa.
Immediately prior to joining Panish Shea & Boyle LLP, Mr. Schultz was a Deputy District Attorney in the Major Fraud Unit of the Orange County District Attorney’s Office from 2008 to 2010, where he handled primarily complex criminal economic fraud cases, including the largest worker’s compensation fraud case in Orange County’s history.
During a 10-year period from 1998 to 2008, Mr. Schultz worked for and then became a partner in the nationally recognized law firm of Lopez, Hodes, Restaino, Skikos & Polos. At this firm, he obtained over $500 million in settlements and verdicts in a variety of individual and mass tort cases.
Mr. Schultz developed his skills as a plaintiff’s lawyer under the tutelage of the late David M. Harney, a former past President of the International Academy of Trial lawyers and widely regarded as one of the greatest trial lawyers of his generation. Between 1988 and 1998, Mr. Schultz worked with the Harney Law Firm, starting as a law clerk while in law school for two years and then as an attorney for eight years. As a young attorney, he tried several cases, including his first case as lead counsel within 3 weeks of passing the bar, which he won.
Mr. Schultz graduated from Loyola Law School in 1990 and obtained his undergraduate degree from UCLA in 1987.
He resides in Newport Beach, California, with his wife Alexandra and his youngest son Elliot, who is in the fifth grade. Mr. Schultz also has two adult children, Andrew, a graduate of UCLA and now a law student at USC Gould School of Law and Christian, a graduate of Loyola Marymount University and who is now studying music at the prestigious Berklee School of Music. Mr. Schultz enjoys spending time with his family, his faithful dog Sadie, a one-year-old rescue, and watching sporting events.