Robyn Leonard is a Partner in the San Francisco office of Gordon & Rees and is a member of the Maritime Law practice group. She began her legal practice defending workers’ compensation cases brought under the California Labor Code. Since 2006, she has represented insurance carriers, third-party administrators and self-insured employers in matters arising under the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act and the Defense Base Act. She handles all aspects of litigation, including discovery, motion practice, complex settlements, mediation, trial, and appellate work. She has successfully defended cases brought before the Office of Administrative Law Judges and before the Benefits Review Board. Her experience includes the following:
Obtained ruling in favor of the employer/carrier for occupational exposure claims for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and neuropathy brought under the Defense Base Act. Decision affirmed following opposing party’s appeal challenging the denial of benefits.
Obtained ruling in favor of the employer/carrier for occupational exposure claims for PTSD and Major Depressive Disorder brought under the Defense Base Act. Decision affirmed following opposing party’s appeal challenging the denial of benefits.
Prevailed on appeal following award of benefits for PTSD and hearing loss, resulting in reversal of trial-level decision and denial of benefits.
Successfully litigated employer/carriers’ right to Special Fund relief at trial level and on appeal, limiting liability for permanent disability compensation to 104 weeks.
Settled exposure for future benefits on terms extremely favorable to carrier following fraud investigation, referral to District Attorney and resulting multiple felony charges of insurance fraud.
Negotiated numerous settlements for multiple clients through informal resolution, mediation and judicial settlement conferences.
U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
U.S. District Court, Northern District of California
Women's International Shipping & Trading Association
Department of Labor Joint Bar Association
Longshore Claims Association
Flight Volunteer, Slaughterhouse Survivors, 2018
Flight Volunteer, Animal Hope & Wellness Foundation, 2017
Mock Trial Judge, Emipre Mock Trial, San Francisco, 2016
Mock Trial Judge, University of California, Berkeley, 2016
Peninsula Humane Society/SPCA, Golf Committee Member (fundraising), 2014-2015
San Francisco SPCA, Volunteer, 2011 to present