A leader within the plaintiffs’ bar, Lexi J. Hazam Co-Chairs the firm’s Mass Torts Practice group and represents clients in mass tort cases and qui tam actions, as well as complex class actions.
Lexi is Court-appointed Co-Lead Counsel for the thousands of Individual Plaintiffs in the Thomas Fire (No. 4965) and Woolsey Fire JCCPs (No. 5000) litigations against Southern California Edison, arising from the colossal wildfires Edison’s equipment caused in recent years. Thousands of victims whose homes and businesses were destroyed or damaged in the fires have recovered approximately $1 billion in settlements to date through these litigations.
The devastating Thomas Fire destroyed over a thousand homes and other structures in Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties in December 2017, and the resulting mudslides in Montecito destroyed additional homes and killed 21 people. The 2018 Woolsey fire burned more than 1000 homes and 96,000 acres in Los Angeles and Ventura Counties. The litigations over these fires include claims for negligence, trespass, inverse condemnation, and violation of the California Public Utilities and Health and Safety codes. CalFire’s official investigations determined that Edison’s equipment was responsible for both fires.
In the Thomas Fire JCCP, Plaintiffs surmounted a demurrer to their inverse condemnation claim, and writ was denied on same. After extensive discovery and shortly before a multi-plaintiff bellwether trial was to occur, the litigation entered into a settlement protocol, which has resolved over one thousand cases to date. Shortly thereafter, the Woolsey Fire litigation entered into a similar protocol which has likewise resolved many hundreds of cases. Together the individual plaintiffs in the Thomas Fire and Woolsey Fire cases have recovered nearly $1 billion thus far.
Lexi also served as Co-Chair of the Class Action Committee in the consolidated lawsuits against Pacific Gas & Electric relating to losses from the 2017 San Francisco Bay Wine Country Fires, and served on the Individual Plaintiffs Executive Committee in the litigation.
Lexi also specializes in developing regulatory and epidemiological evidence and scientific experts in pharmaceutical and device cases. She was appointed by the court overseeing the nationwide Abilify gambling injuries MDL litigation to the Plaintiffs Executive Committee and the Science and Expert Sub-Committee for the case, and was also appointed by the court overseeing the nationwide Benicar MDL litigation to the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee and as Co-Chair of the Benicar MDL Plaintiffs’ Science and Experts Committee. Lexi also co-led a team handling the key FDA expert for the nationwide Opioids MDL litigation. Lexi additionally represented hundreds of hip replacement patients in the DePuy ASR, DePuy Pinnacle metal-on-metal, and Stryker Rejuvenate hip implant injury lawsuits.
Lexi’s qui tam cases include the Office Depot qui tam litigation, a lawsuit alleging that Office Depot knowingly overcharged California cities, counties, and school districts on office and school supplies, that settled for $68.5 million, and the $21.7 million settlement of litigation against Avaya, Lucent Technologies, and AT&T for fraudulently charging governmental agencies for the lease of communications systems. Lexi has also represented whistleblowers in qui tam cases alleging Medicare fraud by hospices in which the government has intervened.
Lexi’s class action practice includes representing nursing home patients of Evergreen and Kindred facilities who received deficient care due to understaffing. A settlement in the Evergreen case included an injunction requiring adequate staffing for several years, without any release of claims by the class.
Lexi also has international litigation experience. She previously represented hemophiliacs worldwide, or their survivors and estates, who contracted HIV and/or Hepatitis C from contaminated blood factor products in America. A confidential settlement was reached in 2009. Lexi played a key role in litigating the case and in negotiating and administering a settlement of the claims of over a thousand clients in 15 countries, utilizing her multilingual skills in work on several continents. The blood factor litigation constitutes one of the only cases in which major U.S. pharmaceutical companies entered a settlement with plaintiffs worldwide. Lexi also has significant experience representing the families of victims in major aviation disasters, including the crash of Gol Airlines Flight 1907 in Brazil in 2006.
In 2021, Lexi was named to the The National Law Journal’s 2021 list of Elite Trial Lawyers – Elite Women of the Plaintiffs’ Bar. In 2020 and 2021, Lexi was also named one of the “Top Women Lawyers in California” by the Daily Journal. In 2021, Lexi was re-elected Chair of the American Association for Justice’s Section on Qui Tam Litigation. In 2017, Lexi was elected as Chair of the American Association for Justice’s Section on Toxic, Environmental, and Pharmaceutical Torts (STEP). Lexi was also selected in 2015 for the AAJ Leadership Academy. Lexi has published regarding the use of technology-assisted review in litigation, and serves as a drafter for the George Washington University Mass-Tort MDL Best Practices Committee. Lexi has spoken at many conferences on mass disaster, pharmaceutical, device, and qui tam litigation.