Introduction: Meet Robert J. Sullivan, the Legal Expertise You Can Trust
Of Counsel with a Vast Array of Experience
Bob Sullivan is a seasoned litigator with extensive trial and appellate background. His practice areas encompass administrative, governmental, labor, and healthcare law. Since 1967, Bob has been representing clients before state and local government agencies, having handled approximately 300 contested adjudicatory hearings under the California Administrative Procedure Act.
A Broad Range of Clients and Services
Bob’s clientele consists of lawyers, real estate brokers, doctors, contractors, engineers, and other professionals regulated by the state. He also provides counseling to various healthcare providers, including individual physicians, medical groups, ambulance companies, hospitals, and mental health clinics. His expertise lies in navigating the complex world of malpractice suits, employment disputes, medical staff credentialing, licensing, and regulatory disputes. Additionally, Bob serves as a skilled arbitrator in healthcare law disputes.
Recognized and Trusted
Bob’s legal acumen is held in high regard, earning him the AV Preeminent® Peer Review Rating by Martindale-Hubbell. Furthermore, he has been selected as one of Northern California’s esteemed “Super Lawyers” in healthcare from 2004 to 2018.
Noteworthy Cases Represented by Robert Sullivan
Challenging the State Civil Service Act: Skelly v. California State Personnel Board
In the case of Skelly v. California State Personnel Board, Bob Sullivan, as the Chief Counsel of the California State Employees Association, successfully represented Dr. Skelly. This landmark case ruled in favor of Dr. Skelly, affirming the right of state civil service employees to a pre-termination due process hearing. The California Supreme Court also declared the post-termination hearing provisions of the Civil Service Act unconstitutional.
Upholding Employee Rights: Barber v. State Personnel Board
In the companion case to Skelly v. State Personnel Board, the Supreme Court, following the Skelly decision, secured justice for Mr. Barber. The Court ruled that Mr. Barber was entitled to be paid until he received a hearing on his appeal from the termination of his employment.
Protecting Medical Confidentiality: Wood v. Superior Court
Board of Medical Quality Assurance issued administrative subpoenas for medical records relating to two doctors suspected of prescribing medication under suspicious circumstances. Bob Sullivan successfully defended the doctors when they refused to comply, resulting in the Court of Appeals granting a peremptory writ. The court emphasized the need for “good cause” before the government can compel the disclosure of medical records.
Safeguarding Growers’ Rights: Menefee & Son v. Department of Food & Agriculture
Growers took legal action against the Department of Food and Agriculture after their crops were seized due to the illegal application of poison. Bob Sullivan fought on behalf of the growers, and the Court of Appeal ultimately overturned the decision, declaring the seizure and the statute authorizing it unconstitutional.
Ensuring Fairness in Civil Service: Armistead v. California State Personnel Board
In the case of Armistead v. California State Personnel Board, a former civil service employee sought a writ of mandate to compel the State Personnel Board to overturn his resignation. Bob Sullivan represented the employee and successfully convinced the Supreme Court to reverse the dismissal. This pivotal case defined underground regulations, with its impact extending to all state agencies.
Overturning an Unreliable Audit: Antioch Park Medical Group v. Dept. of Health Services
Bob Sullivan prevails in representing the Antioch Park Medical Group, successfully invalidating an overpayment audit and finding by the Department of Health Services. The court ruled that the department’s reliance on a statistical sample extrapolation was unreliable and unauthorized by California law. As a result, the Department paid the plaintiff’s attorney fees and costs.
Clarifying Disciplinary Criteria: Vielehr v. State Personnel Board
Bob Sullivan represented a tax representative trainee in a petition for administrative mandamus. The trainee had been discharged based on a possession of marijuana conviction unrelated to their employment. The Court of Appeal concluded that the marijuana possession did not sufficiently establish a nexus that would justify disciplinary action. As a result, the decision was reversed, and the case was remanded.
Bob Sullivan’s Professional Experience and Clients
HealthCare Partners: Comprehensive Services for HMOs
Bob provides legal services to HealthCare Partners, a diverse group of physicians specializing in contracting with HMOs. His expertise spans acquisitions, joint ventures, corporate structuring, employment issues, real estate leasing, and litigation. Presently, Bob is instrumental in assisting them in securing a “limited” Knox-Keene license.
Healthcare Professional Licensure: Support for Healthcare Providers
Bob has represented HMOs, hospitals, physicians, nurses, and various healthcare professionals in matters concerning professional licensing. His assistance covers areas such as application, suspension, revocation, and reinstatement of licenses.
Advocating for Fair Practices: Plumbing, Electrical, and Pool Contractors
Bob Sullivan has successfully represented numerous clients in the contracting industry. For a large plumbing company in central California, he resolved allegations of taking advantage of elderly customers by demonstrating that the fees charged were standard and justified. He also negotiated a settlement for a statewide emergency electrical contractor accused of fraudulent advertising and unnecessary work, allowing them to retain their license. In a case involving a failed pool contractor, Bob proved that the majority shareholders were victims of embezzlement, resulting in felony charges against the responsible managing employee.
Engaging Speaking Engagements
Bob Sullivan’s expertise transcends the courtroom, as he actively shares his wealth of knowledge through speaking engagements. Some notable events where he has delivered insightful talks include:
- “Voir Dire: The Right to Question the Hearing Officer & the Panel,” co-presented with Shelly Carder, California Society for Healthcare Attorneys 2023 Carlo Coppo Hearing Officer Training Program, Indian Wells, CA, 05.04.2023
- California Society for Healthcare Attorneys 2022 Hearing Officer Update Program, Sacramento, CA, 10.27.2022
- “Administrative Hearings,” Pincus Professional Education Webinar, Administrative Law Hearings: A Beginner’s Guide, 09.09.2021
- “Admissibility of Evidence of Retaliation or Discrimination,” California Society of Healthcare Attorneys’ Hearing Officer Update Program, Sacramento, CA, 11.07.2019
- “Show and Tell Time for the MBC: The Use of Demonstrative Evidence in Obtaining Favorable Settlements and Winning Cases,” California Academy of Attorneys for Healthcare Professionals 2018 Fall Conference, Manhattan Beach, CA, 09.30.2018
- “Evidence in the Hearing,” California Society for Healthcare Attorneys 2010 Fall Seminar & Hearing Officer Program, San Francisco, CA, 11.13.2010
- “Medical Board of California Enforcement Process,” Northern California Physicians Council (NORCAP) Educational Forum, San Francisco, CA, 12.02.2006
- “Clinical Dilemmas from the View Points of a Clinician and a Defense Attorney,” California Medical Association (CMA) Pain Management Conference, Anaheim, CA, 12.01.2006
- “Representation of Physicians Before the Medical Board of California,” Association of Defense Counsel of Northern California and Nevada, 09.13.2006
- “California Medical Association and California Medical Association Foundation’s Pain Management Conference,” Physicians’ Rights & Responsibilities Under California Law, 09.08.2006
When it comes to legal matters, Garrity Traina trusts Bob Sullivan. With his vast experience, dedication to his clients, and impressive track record, he is the attorney you need on your side.
For more information on Bob Sullivan and his services, visit Garrity Traina.