[quote style=”boxed”]I practice what I preach and surround myself with an outstanding supporting team.[/quote]
Since launching Shegerian & Associates over a decade ago, Carney Shegerian has developed a reputation as “The People’s Attorney” ‐ fighting passionately for the rights of his employee clients, and compassionately explaining the process as each client navigates through his or her case.
As an experienced trial attorney, Mr. Shegerian has tried numerous jury trials to verdict in both state and federal court, always representing individuals that have suffered financial or emotional losses and have been wronged by employers, including major corporations.
Mr. Shegerian’s record of success for his clients – whether via substantial settlements or in a trial jury scenario, is unparalleled. He has made it his life’s mission to help those who have been wronged in the workplace. He remains undefeated in federal jury trials and has won over 67 jury trials, including 27 seven-figure verdicts as a plaintiff’s attorney. Nominated, and a finalist, for Trial Lawyer of the Year in 2006, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013.
Nominated by CAALA as Trial Lawyer of the Year in 2006, Mr. Shegerian is licensed to practice in all California courts, local federal courts and the United States Supreme Court. Mr. Shegerian has also been nominated for California’s top labor and employment lawyer for 2009. He’s also been included on the Daily Journal’s Top Labor and Employment Lawyer’s list of the top 75 attorney’s.
Where did the idea for forming Shegerian Law come from?
I wanted to launch a practice that would be 100 percent dedicated to employees. Every day, that is what we do. We fight for justice on behalf of our clients who have been in some way wronged by their employers.
What does your typical day look like?
Every day is different, so there really isn’t a “typical” day. From fitsy consultation to the courthouse, whatever stage of a case we are in, we work our hardest to leave no stone unturned and build the strongest possible cases for our clients – and every client is different so each case provides a different experience.
What’s one trend that really excites you in your industry?
Slowly, legislation is coming through the pipeline that is making it harder for employers to discriminate against employees unfairly – that is a very exciting trend that bodes well for the future of employee rights. That said, there is still much work that needs to be done and employees are being harassed, and discriminated against all the time.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as a business owner?
I practice what I preach and surround myself with an outstanding supporting team.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Stay current. The laws in California are changing all the time so we are always keeping our fingers on the pulse of what’s going on and keeping current with even the most obscure aspects of what we do in case it could benefit a client.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business? Please explain how.
We work extremely hard and are 100 percent dedicated to our clients. We won’t represent a client unless we are willing to give our all for him or her.
Tell us something about you that very few people know?
I’ve never lost a federal jury trial.
What people have influenced your thinking and might be of interest to others?
My brother, John Shegerian is in a totally different line of business. He created a company that recycles electronic waste. But his passion for what he believes in (protecting our environment) and his desire to do good work and be the best at what he does – is in many ways similar to what I do. His company, Electronic Recyclers International, is now the biggest and most successful recycler of electronic waste in the world. It’s a close-to-home reminder that you can be a successful entrepreneur and do something positive at the same time.
You might not be where you are today if it wasn’t for…?
My clients. They truly are heroic people who have been unfairly treated and have bravely come forward. In some cases, it’s a whistleblower, in others a person who would no longer tolerate sexual or racial discrimination. Maybe it’s a person living with disabilities. Every case I’ve worked on stems back to the attorney-client relationship, and these brave people inspire me every day to fight in their behalf.
What was your most difficult trial and what was the outcome?
To be honest, every trial has some difficult aspects to it, and some not-so-difficult. It’s hard to say that any one was more difficult than another and almost impossible to compare them because every client is different. Fortunately, the outcomes have been consistently good for the clients I’ve represented in our practice.
What is your opinion about how employers can help reduce workplace discrimination?
Employers need to understand the law and make sure their executive and management staff understand the law. Unfortunately, some employers still believe they are above the law when it comes to discrimination. The bottom line is that workplace discrimination is ALWAYS illegal in the state of California.
Why do you think workplace discrimination is so common today in America?
Unfortunately, there are still many corporations that foster a culture of fear, where employees are led to believe that their bosses can harass or discriminate against them and that there’s nothing they can do – and of course they are afraid of losing their jobs. We’re trying to help get the message out to employees everywhere that they do have rights and there are laws in place to protect them against discrimination and harassment.
Do most of your cases go to trial or settle? What is your success rate? Why are you so successful at what you do?
I’m undefeated in federal jury trials and I have won 67 jury trials, including 27 seven-figure verdicts as a plaintiff’s attorney.
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Mario Schulzke is the Founder of ideamensch, which he started a decade ago to learn from entrepreneurs and give them a platform for their ideas.