PROVEN PROBLEM SOLVER WITH 30+ YEARS AS A TRIAL LAWYER
Jeanne Loftis is a trial attorney passionate about defending companies in the Pacific Northwest during the most stressful situations they will ever face. Clients seek out her guidance on commercial and casualty cases when their problems are especially complicated and can only be resolved at trial. Jeanne is nationally recognized and has a proven track record after trying 25+ cases to verdict as First Chair. She has taken more cases to trial than most civil litigators.
Jeanne tackles complex mass tort, employment, and product liability litigation, with participation ranging from a key leader of a national trial team to defending cases in collaboration with other defendants. She has successfully defended hundreds of products cases involving asbestos, breast implant, pelvic mesh, medical drug, and other medical device liability claims.
Types of cases
- Product liability
- Insurance coverage
- Premises liability
- Employer Liability Law (ELL)
- Employment litigation
- Enforcement of non-competition agreements
- Construction injury and defect
- Investor mismanagement and fraud
- Environmental cleanup
- Sex abuse
- High exposure vehicular casualty
Jeanne enjoys the challenge of figuring out the best avenue to resolution for each unique case. She brings an innate ability to think on her feet and respond to unexpected events as they develop. With her clear and confident approach, she has a way of bringing a story to a jury that they can relate to and understand.
After working together through litigation, clients often turn to Jeanne for counsel to minimize their risk going forward. She provides board advice and contract oversight and manages litigation, including defense of employment lawsuits.
- University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law – J.D., 1991
- University of California, Davis – B.S., 1985, Physiology
- $10.5 million asbestos litigation claim dismissed against a building materials distributor
Obtained summary judgment dismissing a $10.5 million asbestos litigation claim targeting their client, a building materials distributor. The plaintiff alleged exposure to asbestos from a joint compound supplied by the distributor while working as a construction laborer. A Multnomah Circuit Court judge concluded that the plaintiff failed to meet his burden to establish that the plaintiff was exposed to asbestos from a product distributed by the company, and asbestos from any product distributed by the company would have substantially contributed to the plaintiff’s asbestos-related injury.
- Defense jury verdict for mine operating company in $10 million ELL catastrophic injury case
Obtained defense verdict on behalf of client mine operator against Employer Liability Law (ELL) and Mine Safety and Health Act (MSHA) claims for catastrophic injuries sustained by subcontractor employee during a drilling accident. Plaintiff claimed damages totaling $10 million for traumatic amputation of his left arm, brain damage, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and other injuries; plaintiff also alleged complete unemployability. The jury deliberated for a day and a half before finding that the mine operator did not violate the employer liability law and that any violation of the federal regulations did not cause plaintiff’s damages. Plaintiff agreed to forego any appeal.
- Defense jury verdict in defamation case
Obtained defense verdict on behalf of an individual, the principal of a nonprofit coalition working for neighborhood livability, who was sued by a strip club owner for defamation. The coalition’s website contained complaints made by neighbors about the club related to livability issues, including complaints about noise, patrons and employee conduct. Our client worked with the neighbors to alert and involve local and state officials. The club owner claimed his reputation was damaged as a result of these communications. After four days of trial, the jury deliberated for less than six hours before returning a complete defense verdict.
- Defense jury verdict in product liability and negligence claims for asbestos exposure
Successfully defended a joint compound manufacturer at trial. Plaintiff asked for $6.122 million. Jury deliberated three hours before returning a unanimous verdict for the defense, finding that the product wasn’t defective, and that the joint compound manufacturer had adequately warned users of the product.
- Hung jury in $21 million asbestos product liability and negligence claims
Successfully resolved claims against a joint compound manufacturer in which plaintiff sought $21 million. Following a three-week trial, the jury deliberated one day before advising the judge they could not reach a decision. The jury was one juror short of a defense verdict and the case was settled favorably prior to a re-trial.
- Received a rare defense verdict in asbestos litigation case under Longshore and Harborworkers’ Compensation Act
Secured a rare defense verdict in a federal administrative law court, where the plaintiff sought recovery under the plaintiff-friendly Longshore and Harborworkers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA). Plaintiff’s damages arose from the mesothelioma-related death of her late husband, a 72-year-old electrician, who was allegedly exposed to asbestos while working in a naval shipyard. If liability was established, the plaintiff claimed damages in excess of $1 million.
- Successfully settled case involving $14 million claim for asbestos exposure
Resolved a claim against a manufacturer following a 3-week trial. Plaintiff asked for $14 million. After a day of negotiations and what appeared to be a jury ready to render a decision, the judge requested an investigation of concerns regarding eavesdropping by opposing counsel.
- Represented a major health care provider in numerous employment-related claims
Has represented a major health care provider in numerous employment-related claims including assisting with a confidential personnel investigation of claims of harassment and retaliation via a hotline complaint, defending and securing settlement in a federal court case alleging unlawful employment practices and civil rights deprivation, responding to an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charge for age discrimination and negotiating a separation agreement with complainant, and assisting in preparing to investigate and defend potential Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) complaint.
- American Bar Association Client Counseling Regional Competition (Judge, 2021)
- American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA)(Member, 2010-Present)
- Association of Defense Trial Attorneys (Chair, National Membership, 2021-Present; Vice-Chair, Membership Committee, 2019-2021; Committee on Diversity and Inclusion, 2020-Present; Member, 2015-Present)
- Defense Research Institute (Vice Chair, 2021 Corporate Counsel Roundtable Steering Committee, 2018-Present; Member, Governance Committee, 2021; Vice Chair, External Policy Groups Committee, 2018-2020; Northwest Regional Director, Board of Directors, 2014-2017; Oregon State Representative, State and Local Defense Associations (SLDO), 2010-2014; Member, Regional Director Roundtable, 2015-2017; Board Liaison, Data Management and Security Committee, 2016-2017; Member, Board Liaisons to Employment & Labor Law Committee, 2014-2016; Chair, Board Liaison Training, 2017; Vice Chair, Board Liaison Training, 2016; Member & Former Vice Chair, DRI Cares, 2017-2022; Chair, National Program for State and Local Defense Organizations (SLDO), Annual Meeting Steering Committee, 2016; Member, 1998-Present)
- Disability Rights Legal Center (Volunteer Attorney, Education Advocacy Program, 1993-1995)
- Legal Aid Services of Oregon (Instructor, 2002-2005)
- Multnomah Bar Association (Chair, Continuing Legal Education Committee, 1991-1993)
- Oregon Association of Defense Counsel (Editor-in-Chief, OADC’s The Verdict, 2001-Present; Chair, Past Presidents Advisory Board, 2019-Present; Member, Board of Directors, 2004-2011; Member, Governmental Affairs Committee, 2009-present; Member, Political Action Committee, 2009-Present; Member, Nominating Committee, 2011-2015; President, 2011; President Elect, 2010; Co-Chair, Annual Convention, 2007; Member, 2000-Present)
- Oregon State Bar (Advisory Member, 2022-Present; Chair 2020, Litigation Section, Executive Committee, 2013-2021; Member, Planning Committee, Litigation Institute, 2018 & 2019; Founding Member, Diversity Section, Executive Committee, 2002-2009; Chair, Diversity Section, Executive Committee, 2003-2004; Education & Advancement – Access to Justice Sub-Committee, 2009-2010; Co-Chair, New Lawyer Mentoring Program, MCLE Committee, 1993-1994)
- Oregon Board of Bar Examiners (Chair 2004-2005, Member, 2002-2005)
- Oregon Supreme Court (Member, Civil Law Advisory Committee to Chief Justice, 2009)
- Oregon Women Lawyers (Volunteer, Mentor Program, 1992-1993)
- Andrew Legal Clinic (Volunteer Attorney, 1992-2006)
- Texas Young Lawyers Association (Regional Judge, Region 13, National Trial Competition, 2015)
- Boy Scouts of America (Merit Badge Counselor, 2008-Present)
- Inclusive Catholic Education of Oregon, Inc. (Founder, 2015-Present), championing inclusion of students with intellectual disabilities
- Hood Kiwanis Camp (President, Board of Directors, 2020-Present; Member, Board of Directors, 2013-Present)
- Multnomah County Animal Services (Hearings Officer, 1993-2016)
- James Child Development Center (Member, Advisory & Advocacy Board, 2005-2008)
- Thomas More School (Volunteer, 2000-2014; Member, School Advisory Committee, 2012-2014; Raffle Chair, 2008 & 2010-2012; Chair, Spaghetti Dinner, 2009)
- Washington County Parks and Recreation (District 2 Representative, Advisory Board, 1993-1998)
- West Slope Neighborhood Association Committee (NAC) (Member, Board of Directors, 2001-2005)
- Speaker, “Biting The Snake: The Pros and Cons of Seeking Sanctions Against or Opposing Pro Hacs of Plaintiffs’ Counsel”, DRI Asbestos Medicine Seminar (2022)
- Speaker, “Where Zealous Representation Crosses the Line into Misconduct,” Defense Lawyers Association of Wyoming (2022)
- Speaker & Co-Author, “Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Autopsies (and Probably More),” DRI Asbestos Medicine Seminar (2017)
- Panelist, “Trying the 8 Figure Case,” Washington Defense Trial Lawyers, Women’s Commission (WDTL) (2017)
- Moderator, “How DRI SLCs/SLDOs Can Work Better Together,” Defense Research Institute (DRI) Leadership Conference (2017)
- Speaker, “Changes to Federal Rules,” Montana Defense Trial Lawyers (MDTL) Annual CLE Seminar (2016)
- Chair, Defense Research Institute (DRI) Annual Meeting, National Program for State and Local Defense Organizations (SLDO) (2016)
- Speaker, “Components of Successful Rainmaking ‒ How to Find What Works for You,” Oregon Women Lawyers (OWLS) Rainmaking Mentoring Circle Mid-Program Meeting (2016)
- Speaker, “Reptile Theory: Preparing Witnesses for ‘Reptile’ Depositions and Dealing with Reptile Tactics,” Oregon Association of Defense Counsel (OADC) Fall Seminar (2015)
- Panelist, “ADR,” Idaho Association of Defense Counsel (IADC) Annual Meeting (2015)
- Co-Speaker & Author, “Premises Owners—How Far Out Can the Duty of Care Net Be Cast?” Defense Research Institute (DRI) Asbestos Medicine Seminar (2014)
- Moderator, Defense Research Institute (DRI) National Program for State and Local Defense Organizations (2014)
- Co-Speaker, “Primer on Oregon Civil Procedure,” Washington Defense Trial Lawyers (WDTL) (2014)
- Panelist, “Charting Your Course: Some Things to Consider,” Defense Research Institute (DRI) Leadership Conference (2014)
- Co-Speaker & Author, “Trial Techniques and Technology: Using Exhibits and Technology to Your Advantage,” Defense Research Institute (DRI) Product Liability Conference (2013)
- Speaker, “Rules and Experts North of Portlandia,” Washington Defense Trial Lawyers (WDTL) CLE Seminar (2013)
- Moderator, “Marketing to In-House Counsel – What Do You Need to Know?” Oregon State Bar (OSB) Convocation on Equality (2011)
- Speaker & Author, “Disproving Plaintiff’s Exposure: Sequencing on Land and Sea,” Defense Research Institute (DRI) Asbestos Medicine Seminar (2010)
- Speaker, “How Not to Make an Opening Statement,” Oregon Association of Defense Counsel (OADC) Defense Practice Academy (2010)
- Speaker & Author, “Depositions of Product Identification Witnesses in Asbestos Cases,” HarrisMartin’s Asbestos Litigation Conference (2009)
- Co-Speaker & Author, “Discovery: Reducing the Cost and Burden of Overly Broad and Voluminous Requests to Avoid Coercive Settlements,” American Conference Institute (ACI) National Advanced Forum on Litigating and Managing Asbestos Claims (2009)
- Moderator, “First-Year Law Student Orientation,” University of Oregon School of Law (2009)
- Speaker & Author, “Opening Statements in Asbestos Cases: What to Include and What to Avoid,” HarrisMartin’s Asbestos Litigation Conference (2008)
- Speaker & Author, “Diesel Fumes—Is It the Next Asbestos Litigation?” Defense Research Institute (DRI) Product Liability Conference (2007)
- Speaker, “Red Sky in the Morning, Sailor Take Warning – The Storms on the Horizon,” Defense Research Institute (DRI) Product Liability Conference (2007)
- Speaker & Author, “Emerging Torts: Diesel Exhaust, Food Additives [Diacetyl, Olestra, Aspartame, Trans Fat] and By-Products [Benzene, Acrylamide],” Washington Defense Trial Lawyers (WDTL) Annual Tort Law Update (2007)
- Moderator, Opportunities for Lawyers in Oregon (OLIO) Annual Retreat (2007 & 2006) Co-
- Author, “New Wave of Asbestos Claims: Update on Federal Asbestos Litigation,” American Bar Association (ABA) Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section (TIPS), Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee Midyear Program (2004)
- Speaker, “Trial Tips: Three Sure-Fire Ways to Reduce Judgments,” Defense Research Institute (DRI) Product Liability Conference (2003)
- Co-Speaker & Author, “Successful Strategies for Vaccine Litigation,” American Conference Institute (ACI) National Advanced Forum on Drug and Medical Device Litigation (2002)
- Author, “Various Case Notes,” Oregon Association of Defense Counsel (OADC) Newsletter (2001 & 2000)
- Speaker, “Training Program for Local Counsel,” Dow Chemical (1996) Author, “Directors and Officers’ Liability for Environmental Cleanup Costs,” 24 Tort & Insurance Law Journal (1993)
- Co-Author, “Oregon DEQ New Site Discovery Rules,” Oregon State Bar (OSB) Environmental and Natural Resources Law News (1991)
- Executive Editor & Published Author, Pacific Law Review, 21 Pacific L. Journal 995, University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law (1990)
- AV®Preeminent™, Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell since 2004
- Best Lawyers®2020, 2018, 2016 & 2014 Portland-OR Mass Tort Litigation/Class Actions – Defendants “Lawyer of the Year”
- The Best Lawyers in America© (2012-2023 — Commercial Litigation; 2013-2023 — Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants; 2013-2023 — Product Liability Litigation – Defendants)
- “Local Litigation Star” by Benchmark Litigation (2015-2018 — Construction; General Commercial; Personal Injury; Product Liability)
- Oregon Super Lawyers (2009-2021 — Personal Injury Defense: Products)
- Best Buddies Oregon, Champions of Inclusion Award (2020)
- Defense Research Institute’s 2018 Fred H. Sievert Award for her contributions towards achieving the goals and objectives of an organized defense bar
- Defense Research Institute’s 2014 State Leadership Award for directing and guiding DRI membership activity within the state of Oregon, for upholding the tenets of DRI and for her service in the role of State Representative
- Oregon Association of Defense Counsel’s 2012 Appreciation Award for her outstanding contributions as the 2011 President
- Defense Research Institute’s 2011-2012 Exceptional Performance Citation for having supported and improved the standards and education of the defense bar, and for her work with the Oregon Association of Defense Counsel in having contributed to the improvement of the administration of justice in the public interest
- Tracy G. Helms Memorial Scholarship (1989-1990)
- Legislative Review Staff for Volume 21 of the Pacific Law Journal (April 1989)
- Comment Staff Writers Staff of the Pacific Law Journal (September 1989)
- Board of Editors as the Articles Editor for the Pacific Law Journal
- John A. Stauffer Legal Research Fellowship Program (1989-1990)
- Women Lawyers of Sacramento Scholarship (April 1990)
FEARLESS CHAMPION IN SPORTS AND IN COURTS
Jeanne grew up in a large family, using her negotiation skills early with her parents to advocate for her siblings. She now helps to problem solve for her own kids. Jeanne is a champion for underdogs and people’s rights. As a mom of a child with an intellectual disability, she started a Catholic education nonprofit promoting inclusivity of students with special needs.
Jeanne was a rock climber, ski instructor and a rafting guide before she became a lawyer. A self-proclaimed thrill seeker, she enjoys outdoor activities and sports like scuba diving. She knows how to manage risks, think under pressure, solve issues when they come up, and brings that practicality to the courtroom.