Dr. Bruce Fishman
It has been this office's privilege to represent Bruce E. Fishman, M.D., in a recent series of litigations instigated by Patrick Nazemi, a businessman with which Dr. Fishman had a business relationship from 2012-2014 when Dr. Fishman elected to end that relationship. Mr. Nazemi, as that financial relationship unwound, attempted to extort $500,000 from Dr. Fishman under the threat of his public disclosure of Dr. Fishman's 1983 felony, which was ultimately and definitively adjudicated to have occurred and designed to harm Dr. Fishman.
After Dr. Fishman refused to pay the blackmail, Nazemi filed an arbitration matter with JAMS, suing Dr. Fishman for $4.2 million for a series of alleged claims, all based on the 1982 felony conviction. Ultimately, after very nasty litigation, all of Nazemi's claims were rejected and Dr. Fishman was awarded $628,497.31 against one of Nazemi's corporate shells. Nazemi, through his attorney Ronald Tym, it appealed to the Superior Court to set aside the arbitration award; Nazemi lost. Nazemi then appealed to the Court of Appeal; where he lost. He then appealed to the Supreme Court of California, which refused to have a hearing on his case. That case is now final.
In addition, Nazemi has instigated another meritless lawsuit in which he and his lawyers and companies claimed to be whistleblowers ("qui tam") on behalf of the State of California against Dr. Fishman's "fraud". The State of California has refused to get involved in Nazemi's vendetta lawsuit. The Superior Court has already dismissed (by demurrer) one of the 2 causes of action and is now awaiting dismissal of that action.
In addition, Nazemi was able to convince the Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) to "suspend" Dr. Fishman's right to practice Worker's Compensation, the field in which Dr. Fishman has Board certification and where he has practiced in California without complaint since 1990. The DIR claimed that it was mandated to suspend all providers who had ever been convicted of felonies pursuant to Labor Code §139.21, which became effective in 2017, 34 years after Dr. Fishman's felony. Importantly, Dr. Fishman was not charged under the provisions relating to practice-related or patient-related misconduct or fraud, but rather under the "catchall" provisions. The matter has been pending since April 2018.
At the January 2019 trial, the DIR's attorneys stipulated (formally agreed) that Dr. Fishman had done nothing wrong since his reinstatement in 1990 – or since his felony in 1983. The Worker's Compensation judge, who was appointed by the DIR specifically to hear this matter, ultimately issued the attached decision finding that Dr. Fishman should NOT be suspended and that he was not within the contemplation of 2017's Labor Code §139.21. Like every other judicial decision beginning in 1990, she found that Dr. Fishman was eligible to continue to practice Worker's Compensation medicine, as he has been doing, without complaint, for 37 years.
A Few Words of Explanation From Howard A. Kapp, Esq.
Law Offices of Howard A. Kapp
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