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Occupying the Leading Edge With Innovative Style, Proven Strategies, and Lasting Relationships

Madison Law, APC, has shown remarkable growth and has developed the knowledge, expertise, and resources to handle a wide range of legal challenges for local, regional, national and even international clients, including pioneering and establishing a firm position on the leading edge of a niche practice area. Madison Law was founded as a full-service legal firm with the help of three seasoned directors. It is now the “go-to” firm in serving clients with a unique consumer defense problem that is currently plaguing auto dealer and auto finance companies. Ali Parvaneh, James S. Sifers and Jenos Firouznam-Heidari began with the goal of providing services to businesses, but, as Firouznam-Heidari says, they soon found themselves dedicated to serving business people. “Our clients are our friends. They may often own or operate businesses, but they face personal legal issues as well. For that reason, we evolved to suit most of our clients’ legal needs. We value our friendships and long-lasting relationships with our clients.”
In addition to the issues typically affecting businesses, such as consumer complaints, partnership disputes, and transactional matters, the firm evolved to suit a growing list of client needs—developing departments equipped to handle real estate, business, bankruptcy, family law, employment law, and personal injury matters. Madison Law also works closely with estate planning, immigration, and criminal attorneys to provide clients with a full array of services. The firm has 13 attorneys and a staff of 12.

On the Leading Edge of Consumer Defense
Prior to starting Madison Law, Parvaneh, Sifers, and Firouznam-Heidari were involved in another firm, where they received a referral from a longtime client of Parvaneh’s for a business being targeted by a consumer attorney who wanted them to pay for cases in which these attorneys could find no wrongdoing. The attorneys at Madison Law dug in and successfully defended those cases. Their success quickly created a buzz within the auto dealer and finance industry which brought new clients pouring into their law firm.
This area of practice focuses on representing auto dealerships and auto finance companies in consumer litigation. This area of the law only has a handful of cases that guide the few attorneys in this narrow practice area. Madison Law is the leading defense firm in the field. Sifers was the lead trial attorney and Firouznam-Heidari the appellate attorney on a leading case in the field addressing a key issue in consumer litigation. (Benson v. Southern California Auto Sales, Inc., (2015) 239 Cal. App. 4th 1198.) Firouznam-Heidari says, “In this practice area there are only two categories when it comes to defense representation: Us and Not Us. In Orange County we are pretty much it. We pretty much wrote the playbook on this specialized area.”
The firm’s clients in this area are generally small to mid-size auto dealerships and auto finance companies. The firm has developed such an enviable reputation in this area that Sifers is a regular contributor to West Coast Dealer Magazine, advising dealers on compliance with California law. Aside from helping clients’ claims, Madison Law holds free seminars at least once a year for dealers to discuss how to conduct their business with an eye towards compliance and avoiding litigation. Sifers also personally visits the firm’s dealership clients regularly to audit their forms and practices and educate their personnel. To better serve those niche clients the firm organized a dedicated department and developed a reasonable fee structure. They can handle litigation of hundreds of cases at a time at an effective cost to each client. Their approach allows the client to afford to fight and defend itself rather than feel forced to have to settle for an unjustly high amount only to then be repeatedly targeted by the same consumer attorneys. Madison Law is equally effective in more traditional areas of practice even when out-of-the-box thinking is required to assure a successful conclusion.

For example, in an ongoing case which started out as an LLC ownership dispute, investigation of the plaintiff’s claims led to the discovery of family court documents in a long-concluded divorce. This led the firm to reach out to the plaintiff’s wife to inform her that her ex-husband failed to disclose assets in the divorce proceedings. One of those assets was the LLC at issue in the business dispute and the funds used to acquire an interest in the LLC. The family law judgment was set aside, and these attorneys litigated the matter to a very substantial judgment for their client, the ex-wife, who would have otherwise never known that she had been cheated. Additionally, due in large part to discovery of documents related to the divorce matter, the business dispute resolved in favor of the defendant, the former client in that matter. While the family law judgment has been appealed and is currently pending the Court of Appeal’s decision, reversal is unlikely. The Madison Law appellate department is currently handling this stage of the case. The way the case transpired is a perfect example of creativity, the ability to pay close attention to the smallest detail, and the power of focused teamwork.
The firm has earned a reputation for accountability and responsiveness to client needs by making sure that the client is always “in the loop” on the progress of a case. Sifers notes that clients never see their attorneys writing motions, arguing the hearings they don’t attend, holding strategy meetings and doing hundreds of behind-the-scenes tasks. “Their only connection to the case is what you tell them. The biggest complaint I hear about other attorneys is not returning calls/e-mails. We’re not only responsive, we’re responsive fast. These cases are our business, but for our clients, it is often their lives,” he says. Their high level of competence and individualized service was noted by a satisfied client who wrote, “My company was sued for hundreds of thousands of dollars by a former employee for discrimination and wage and hour claims. The attorneys at Madison Law handled my defense of the lawsuit in a professional and efficient manner—all the way through trial. I was very impressed by the service I received and very pleased when the jury returned a verdict in my favor. Thanks!”

Their client-centric approach and willingness to extend themselves to exceed client needs has built enormous trust and loyalty. For example, a client facing a criminal issue knew that Madison Law is not primarily a criminal defense firm. When they recommended another firm to handle the case, the client insisted that they sit as second chair to the criminal attorney. The attorneys say that there is no defendant too big and no opposing counsel too big for them to take on. They have the resources and the financial strength to hire the necessary experts and handle whatever it takes to serve a client’s case needs. And they aren’t afraid to go to trial. Parvaneh is a board-certified trial specialist. “He is the best I’ve ever seen,” Firouznam-Heidari says.“
Our clients are not just represented by one attorney, but by many, each with different strengths and perspectives. Often, different aspects of a case require different skill sets. We are organized to apply the proper skill set as it becomes necessary by working as a team—this isn’t a one-man show,” Firouznam-Heidari says.Sifers says, “We’ve all known each other and have worked closely for quite a long time now. We all understand each of us brings something very different to the table. Our skills and our personalities are different, but when we come together we make a solid team. For example, I am known for enjoying a ‘good fight’ in the legal arena. Jenos is more settlement oriented. Our different approaches provide a well-rounded, balanced approach for our clients.”

Hands-Off Leadership
Management’s approach to their attorneys is basically hands-off initially—allowing the associates to strategize their own cases with the supervision of a senior litigator. The directors do get involved with cases and provide guidance as needed, but they want, encourage and allow attorneys to think and litigate their own cases because, as Sifers says, they want the attorneys to join them in management someday. Sifers says managing the support staff requires a similar approach. “We intend to allow these people to grow and continue to take over more and more of the administration so that we can focus on doing the best legal work possible.” Firouznam-Heidari adds, “We manage the staff in a way that gives them authority and responsibility. They do their job well so we’re able to focus on the law.” That environment has attracted the attention and the business referrals from other firms. Madison Law is generous with referral fees. Beyond that, they take extraordinary steps to ensure that the referred client is well cared for and is happy with the services received. In many instances, they have had an opposing counsel in prior cases refer clients to the firm. They have even had prior opposing counsel ask for personal representation in a matter. Ninety percent of the firm’s business litigation cases are referrals. Sifers says, “Networking and who you know is great. That’s going to always bring in the business. But how you sustain business is by working hard and doing good work. That builds career-long relationships that just continue to grow. The better you do for any one client can only lead to that person telling their friends and family the next time they hear about a legal problem. We are largely a referral-based firm and rapidly growing.” Firouznam-Hiedari says, “If you really love it, you’ll probably ultimately be very good at it. I think all three of us really love what we do and that allows us to do it very well.”

Madison Law, APC
17702 Mitchell North
Irvine, CA 92614
(949) 756-9050

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