Randy Sullivan

Business and Real Estate Litigation

Partner

Business and Real Estate Litigation

Randy Sullivan’s practice is focused on civil litigation representing plaintiffs and defendants in primarily business and real estate disputes. Randy represents property owners, developers, financial institutions, mortgage brokers, real estate brokers, directors and officers, and technology companies.

Randy has successfully litigated a number of cases through trial, arbitration, and mediation and is experienced in complex litigation and all aspects of state and federal trials.  He has also resolved cases before trial by obtaining awards for motions for summary judgment and through other pre-trial motions.

His business and real estate litigation experience includes complex litigation and the defense of whistleblower actions (qui tam lawsuits) and False Claims Act cases; defense of mortgage lending liability claims; employment disputes; corporate disputes; commercial lease disputes; real property buyer-seller disputes; premises liability claims; representation of real estate brokers and agents; trade secret litigation; construction defect litigation; and religion and law disputes.

Recent Representation:

Real Property Disputes:

  • Successful prosecution of right to re-purchase real property after it substantially appreciated in value by more than $10,000,000;
  • Prosecuted numerous quiet title actions for substantial real property holdings valued at over $100 million;
  • Successfully defended environmental remediation damage claim of over $3 million brought by one of the big 5 oil companies;
  • Successful defense of action to ensure that use restriction in CC&Rs upheld;
  • Associate counsel at trial, where our clients were awarded $8,800,000 in liquidated damages, attorney fees and costs against a New York Stock Exchange-traded developer and home builder that refused to close on the final phase of a $241,500,000 contract with our clients for the sale of raw land after the real estate market crash. The developer claimed that it was not required to close because our clients, the sellers had breached the contract. The United States District Court held in favor of our clients;
  • Successful prosecution and enforcement of verbal equity sharing agreement to establish real property ownership of a Livermore winery;
  • Secured settlement for property owner of over $400,000 for trespass claim;
  • Successful prosecution of quiet title and inverse condemnation action against State of California to secure a right of way;
  • Successfully prosecuted easements claims and defended claims for past due grazing rent claims through trial;
  • Secured settlement of $225,000 from real property owner that caused fire that damaged neighboring property’s trees;
  • Successful representation of partnership owning $9 million mobile home park in San Diego County in breach of lease action based on alleged claim that certain transfers constituted third party sales that conferred the lessee a right to purchase the property; and,
  • Represented commercial landowners in unlawful detainers and foreclosures.

Mortgage Lending and Brokerage Disputes:

  • Defense of repurchase demands by secondary market lenders/buyers and their successors, including cases by the FDIC and Lehman Brothers Holdings, Inc. relating to alleged disparity in loan application materials arising under wholesale and repurchase agreements;
  • Successfully defended private money lenders against borrower’s lawsuit for $66 million based on claims of fraud and violation of the mortgage foreclosure consultant act;
  • Successfully defended loan brokers and officers in numerous actions based on Truth in Lending Act claims, the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act, the Home Ownership and Equity Protection Act, the Mortgage Foreclosure Act, fraud, breach of fiduciary duty and negligence;
  • Defend claim by individual investor/members of LLC against mortgage broker and loan officer; and,
  • Successfully resolved claim by hard money lender against mortgage broker through filing of motion for summary judgment.

False Claim, Qui Tam & Business Disputes:

  • Successful defense of qui tam investigation by the State of California, and subsequent whistleblower False Claims Act case against corporate entities operating an oyster shell dredging and processing business;
  • Associate counsel in defense of corporate shareholders and members of a partnership in an action initiated by a whistleblower and the State of California based on the California False Claims Act. The State claimed in excess of $180,000,000 in damages, penalties and interest, based on mineral lease relationships that began in the 1950s;
  • Prosecution of trade secret claims relating to insurance brokerage accounts and prospective customer lists and secure favorable settlement;
  • Defense of alleged damage claims in excess of $5,000,000 by whistleblower and State of California for alleged violations of the False Claims Act, antitrust violations, and unfair competition law relating to small business certification of a distributor and its relationship with an original equipment manufacturer; and,
  • Successful defense of director and president against alleged damage claims of $2,356,000. At trial the court dismissed plaintiff’s claims in their entirety, ruling in favor of our client.

Employment Disputes:

  • Successful prosecution of wrongful termination and past wage claim resulting in $350,000 settlement;
  • Successful defense of claims of constructive discharge and harassment based alleged discrimination of employee with HIV medical condition;
  • Resolved claims on behalf of employer against claims of constructive discharge and alleged harassment;
  • Secured temporary restraining order against rogue employees planning on forming a competing company with employer’s trade secrets; and,
  • Successful defense of ostensible agency claims against alleged employer through motion for summary judgment.

Construction Defect & Mechanic Lien Disputes:

  • Successful representation of homeowner in claims arising out of construction of multi-million dollar property, defending against home builder’s claims that the damages were caused by deep soil movement;
  • Prosecution of homeowner’s claim against nationwide home builder for defective foundation of residence in Antioch resulting in settlement of $287,500;
  • Represent medical facility owner against general contractor’s cost overruns for development and construction of new facility to remove liens and facilitate refinance of the construction loan; and
  • Represent investor and developer of apartment complex to resolve various lien claims by subcontractors.

Administrative Law Disputes:

  • Represent real estate agents against investigations and disputes relating to license issues with the California Department of Real Estate

Education:

  • J.D., Santa Clara University School of Law (2003)
    • Honor’s Moot Court
    • Judicial extern in the Superior Court of Santa Clara for the Honorable Mary Jo Levinger
    • Worked in the United States Attorney’s Office’s law school clinical program, making daily appearances in the United States District Court assisting in federal criminal prosecutions
  • B.A., Psychology, University of California, Santa Barbara (1999)

Publications:

Professional Activities, Memberships, and Recognition

  • Chair of Real Property Executive Committee for the Alameda County Bar Association (2014); Secretary (2012-2013)
  • 2013 Top Rated Lawyer in Real Estate Law by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Co-Chair of the Real Estate Sales and Brokerage Subsection of the Real Property Section of the California State Bar (2010-2012)
  • Member of the California Mortgage Bankers Association (Member of the Mortgage Quality and Compliance Committee)
  • Member of California Litigation and Real Property Law Sections for the California State Bar
  • Pleasanton Leadership Class of 2006
  • 2005 Moot Court Judge for the ABA National Appellate Advocacy Competition
  • Member of Contra Costa Bar Association
  • Member of the Alameda County Bar Association
  • Member of the Eastern Alameda County Bar Association

Court Admission

  • California (2003)
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (2011)
  • United States District Court, Northern District of California (2003)
  • United States District Court, Eastern District of California (2009)
  • United States District Court, Central District of California (2011)
  • United States District Court, Central District of California (2011)