Personal Lines
Experts In Defending; Automobile Accidents, Traumatic Brain Injuries, Soft Tissue or Minor Impact, PIP/UM/UIM, ORS 20.080
See How Our Results Speak For Themselves
Innovative Litigators
Expert Problem Solvers
Legal Analytics Driven

From the moment we opened our doors, Smith Freed Eberhard has been fearlessly pushing the edge of what’s possible for our clients. We’ve carefully cultivated and developed specialties in our practices and our people to give you the very best: our formidable expertise, our strategically creative thinking, and litigation guideline adherence. We are your champion, keenly focused on understanding your situation, solving your challenges, achieving your goals.

Our Personal Lines defense team are highly skilled in defending all types of personal lines claims. This includes; Minor Impact / Bodily Injury / Fractures and Broken Bones / Neck and Back Injuries / Spinal Cord Injuries / Sexual Abuse / Traumatic Brain Injuries / Wrongful Death / Bad Faith / Premises Liability, Slip, Trip, and Fall Accidents / High Net Worth Insureds / Host Liquor Liability / ORS 20.080 – Attorney Fees.

Gordon Klug
  • Washington

With a strong business and litigation background, and over 20 years of first-chair trial experience, Gordon knows exactly which strategies will make a weak case stronger as well as what makes practical and financial sense. Gordon’s practice focuses on construction defect litigation defending developers, general contractors, and subcontractors throughout Washington state and works closely with Smith Freed Eberhard’s Construction and Development Group.

Prior to joining Smith Freed Eberhard, Gordon worked in-house for Travelers Insurance Company where he led the opening of the construction defect unit for their Seattle Staff Counsel office. He also focused on slip-and-falls, auto liability, construction liability, and commercial claims. Before joining Travelers, he worked for four years with the Hartford Insurance Company where he specialized in construction defect and complex commercial liability cases.

Gordon has successfully first-chaired over 50 jury trials to verdict. He is a licensed attorney before the Washington State and Appellate Courts, the United States District Court, as well as with the Puyallup Tribal Court.A notable trial victory for Gordon involved a slip-and-fall case in Snohomish County Superior Court where the jury found the plaintiff 57% at fault for her own injuries and awarded her only $10,000 for “pain and suffering”. In this case, the attorneys stipulated that the plaintiff’s medical bills “proximately caused” by the fall were $38,000 and, in the end, the plaintiff received approximately $26,000 which was not enough to satisfy her medical lien.

Gordon has also successfully handled a mandatory arbitration case where he obtained a defense verdict for his client. He also received a favorable verdict in King County District Court where the jury awarded only $1 in pain and suffering to the plaintiff.

Jake Rasmussen
Associate Attorney
  • Oregon /
  • Washington

Jake is an associate on Josh Hayward‘s team. He focuses on automotive insurance defense and personal injury where he draws on his experience in investigating the validity of claims against his corporate and public clients.

Prior to joining Smith Freed Eberhard, Jake represented self-insured employers in Oregon and Washington for a workers’ compensation defense firm in Lake Oswego, Oregon. There, Jake managed an active caseload of over 50 separate matters for a major US grocery chain, proving himself to be an instrumental part of negotiating favorable settlements and the closure of claims. He also represented many corporations and government bodies in litigation before the Washington Board of Industrial Insurance Appeals.

Additionally, Jake spent much of his early practice helping the average citizen. In the wake of the housing crisis, Jake represented distressed homeowners against banks in mortgage litigation, typically for improper lending practices. He also managed a firm’s unlawful detainer caseload throughout litigation while representing his clients in all court proceedings.

Prior to earning his Juris Doctor at the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law, Jake researched state legislative history and statutes for a Sacramento-based firm specializing in legislative intent research. He has also researched labor, employment, and real property issues for senior attorneys at three California state bodies.

Jessica Kamish
Jessica Kamish
Associate Attorney
  • Washington

Jessica is an associate on Tom McCurdy and Ashley Nagrodski’s team providing defense for insurers and their insureds in a variety of commercial litigation suits. Jessica’s practice focuses on automobile accidents, premises liability, product liability, first and third party personal injury, and uninsured and underinsured motorist cases.

Prior to joining Smith Freed Eberhard, Jessica worked as a civil litigator on both the plaintiffs and defense side. She gained experience in the areas of commercial litigation, personal injury, construction defect, eminent domain, professional malpractice, and employment, in addition to federal contract and trespass law.

While attending law school in Washington, D.C., Jessica won awards for her legal writing and oral advocacy skills. Jessica also took the opportunity to intern at the Federal Trade Commission and Department of Justice, and is proud to have worked as a legal assistant for The Constitution Project’s task force on detainee treatment.

Before beginning her legal career, Jessica worked as an editor for a major publisher in D.C.

Jessica loves to spend her free time cooking, hiking, backpacking, kayaking, skiing, checking out the breweries of Seattle with friends, and introducing visitors to the adventures of the Pacific Northwest.

Joy Lee
Associate Attorney
  • Washington

Joy is an associate attorney on Cliff Wilson’s team, focusing on Personal Lines defense.

Prior to joining Smith Freed Eberhard, Joy’s legal career started in Philadelphia and included working for the Philadelphia Law Department, Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office, and a small civil defense firm representing municipal entities in tort litigation and workers’ compensation claims.

Joy is a proud graduate of Villanonva University School of Law and served as the President of the Asian Pacific American Law Students Association.  During school she worked with the Philadelphia Homeless Advocacy Project, Defender’s Association of Philadelphia, and the Farmworker Legal Aid Clinic, litigating matters on behalf of the indigent, all of which provided valuable experiences which inform her practice today.

Joy is happy to be back in the Pacific Northwest, spending her free time at concerts, checking out local new eats, and cooking and baking with her daughter.

, Research Pays Off (to the Tune of $2.2 Million) Friday December 20, 2019 By: Firm Authorship
, , Rejected: A Desperate Attempt to Recover Expenses Friday December 20, 2019 By: Firm Authorship
, , The Early Bird Gets the Case Dismissed Friday December 20, 2019 By: Firm Authorship
Safe Harbor Letter , Preparation Always Pays off: Especially at Trial Friday December 20, 2019 By: Firm Authorship
, , The Case of the Mysterious Torn Medial Meniscus Friday December 20, 2019 By: Firm Authorship
, Hit and Run Dismissed Friday December 20, 2019 By: Firm Authorship
, Admitting Liability and Saving Costs Friday December 20, 2019 By: Firm Authorship
, Know Your Venue: Taking Advantage of Arbitration Rules to Gain the Upper Hand and Mitigate Costs Friday December 20, 2019 By: Firm Authorship
, , Pre-Existing Conditions Affirmed, No Additional Recovery Earned Friday December 20, 2019 By: Firm Authorship
, Dog Bite Dilemma Friday December 20, 2019 By: Firm Authorship
operation trick or treat Operation Trick-or-Treat Wednesday January 23, 2019 By: Gordon Klug
KDB Success Story Padilla , Bringing a Claim to a Complete Stop Thursday January 10, 2019 By: Firm Authorship
Small Claims Big Headache , Small Claims, Big Headache Thursday December 27, 2018 By: Firm Authorship
, , Occam’s Razor at Work Wednesday February 17, 2016 By: Firm Authorship
, Cleaning the Slate: Using Witness Strengths to Dispel Juror’s Pre-Conceived Notions Wednesday February 17, 2016 By: Firm Authorship
, , Whose Fault is it Anyway? Friday December 11, 2015 By: Firm Authorship
, No Tolerance For Tardiness Monday October 19, 2015 By: Firm Authorship
, Using the Right Rulebook Monday October 19, 2015 By: Firm Authorship
Know the Law In and Out: Developing the Right Game Plan to Keep Costs Down Wednesday September 16, 2015 By: Firm Authorship
, Absolute Duty Not Lost in Translation Thursday July 16, 2015 By: Gordon Klug
, , The Show Must Go On Thursday July 9, 2015 By: Firm Authorship
, , Turning Over a New Leaf Thursday July 2, 2015 By: Firm Authorship
, Disproving a Self Serving Story Tuesday June 30, 2015 By: Josh Hayward
, Sticking to Your Guns with Trucking Clients Tuesday June 30, 2015 By: Cliff Wilson
Legal Webcast: The 411 on SB 411 Thursday June 25, 2015 By: Josh Hayward
Our Process

Early & Accurate

On-Time Reporting
Throughout the Life of the Case

Legal Analytics
Proven Results
We Play
to win

We believe that Successful litigation results are a blend of both art and a science. Our innovative legal analytics, legal project management and client service have put us at the forefront of litigation management. Our focus on up-front and early case evaluation, settlement, timely reporting and litigation analytics are why insurance carriers throughout the world choose SFE defend their insureds throughout the Pacific Northwest. We work skillfully and cost-effectively to find a favorable resolution to your litigation challenge

SFE has defended thousands of automotive defense / bodily injury cases throughout Oregon and Washington. Our experience in representing insureds as policy holder’s, Ride-sharing services, taxi’s and Self-driving autos — allows our attorneys to gain critical experience on a wide range of automotive defensive scenarios which helps us to understand different themes brought by plaintiffs counsel and their unique challenges.

Often the desired course of action to resolve conflict, particularly in complex, time sensitive, expensive catastrophic injury cases is the best course of action. With that in mind, our personal lines defense team is committed to resolving even the most hotly contested disputes outside of court and with less delay and expense than in the traditional litigation process. The firm’s lawyers are involved in the arbitration and mediation of injury disputes of all kinds, which can result in significant cost and time savings for our clients.

Personal lines defense matters cannot be solved with a one size fits all approach. Our philosophy in analyzing and mitigating risk is the same whether our attorneys are negotiating a settlement or actively litigating a case. Early evaluation and discovery is critical. Our team seeks to identify legal defenses theories at the earliest point possible and effective settlement opportunities.

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