Award is the Largest Public Utility Settlement in History
Los Angeles, California – September 27, 2021 – Nearly six years after the worst methane gas leak in U.S. history, Valencia-based law firm Owen, Patterson & Owen’s clients are among the residents of Porter Ranch receiving a $1.8 billion settlement from Southern California Gas Company (SoCal Gas), a utility company based in Los Angeles, the primary provider of natural gas to Southern California, and its parent company, Sempra Energy. [Los Angeles Superior Court | Lead Case William Gandsey BC601844]
“Our clients have endured this process for the past six years, and we are thrilled with the results,” said Susan A. Owen, a senior partner at the law firm of Owen, Patterson & Owen (OPO) and a member of the Plaintiff Steering Committee, a small group of lawyers who spearheaded the litigation. OPO represented approximately 3,800 plaintiffs in this historic settlement.
Since the discovery of the gas leak at the SoCalGas Aliso Canyon Facility, thousands of Porter Ranch residents, including many children, have reported headaches, dizziness, severe coughs, nosebleeds, rashes, vomiting, earaches, vision problems, gum swelling, increased anxiety, as well as neurological, gastrointestinal, and other respiratory health issues due to exposure to a litany of cancer-causing chemicals. Over 8,000 families were forced to evacuate their homes in droves and children relocated to safer schools.
“With this announcement, Porter Ranch residents and workers can begin laying the new foundation for their hard-fought and long-awaited journey back to normalcy,” said Owen. “I am so proud of the unwavering, years-long dedication our litigation team has exhibited, which involved everything from helping clients who were injured from the toxic gas fumes find the right doctors to locating specialists for other victims.”
The work included more than 585 depositions and intense fighting on every front in this heavily litigated case.
About Owen, Patterson & Owen
Founded in 1977 and located in Valencia, California, the law firm of Owen, Patterson & Owen is recognized by the most prestigious organizations in the field of law, honoring the top 1% of the 1.3 million lawyers in the country. The firm has recovered hundreds of millions of dollars for families and individuals who have been personally injured.