January 29, 2018

Partner John Hart Successfully Defends Obstetrician in Medical Malpractice Suit

John Hart successfully defended a Multnomah County Circuit Court case involving a child who contracted herpes at birth. Plaintiff alleged that our Hart Wagner clients were negligent in failing to suspect herpes, failing to test the patient for HSV-2 given her signs and symptoms, and also in failing to communicate her findings to the patient’s regular treating Obstetrician. The baby was severely brain injured from HSV-2. Plaintiff requested recovery of $34,000,000 in economic damages together with $12,500,000 in noneconomic damages. After three weeks of trial, the jury came back with a unanimous defense verdict.

January 17, 2018

We Are Proud to Announce Michael G. Jacobs as Partner

Michael JacobsHart Wagner named Michael G. Jacobs as the firm’s newest partner.  Michael maintains a versatile practice focusing on general liability, products liability and medical malpractice defense.  With a proven track record of achieving positive results for his clients, he will be a great addition to Hart Wagner’s partnership.  He is a 2009 graduate of Lewis & Clark Law School who joined Hart Wagner in 2011 as an associate.  Congratulations, Michael!

December 05, 2017

Benchmark Litigation Named Karen O’Kasey Local Litigation Star 2018

For the fourth year in a row, Hart Wagner’s Karen O’Kasey once again was named a Local Litigation Star in the practice area Labor and Employment by Benchmark Litigation.  View the entire list of Oregon firms and attorneys who were honored in the 2018 edition of Benchmark Litigation, the definitive guide to America’s leading litigation firms and attorneys.  This is the only publication to focus solely on US litigation.Benchmark Litigation 2018

December 01, 2017

Nine Hart Wagner Attorneys Were Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America© 2018

Rodney Norton, a partner at the Hart Wagner law firm, was singled out in the newly released 2018 edition of The Best Lawyers in America©.

Rodney Norton received the 2018 “Lawyer of the Year” award for Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants in the Portland area.  Lawyer of the Year recognitions are awarded to individual attorneys with the highest overall peer feedback for a specific practice area and geographic location.  Only one lawyer is recognized as the Lawyer of the Year for each specialty and location.  Receiving this designation reflects the high level of respect a lawyer has earned among other leading lawyers in the same communities and in the same practice areas for his or her abilities, professionalism and integrity.

In addition to earning the “Lawyer of the Year” award, Norton was listed in the 2018 edition of The Best Lawyers in America in the following practice areas:

  • Ethics and Professional Responsibility Law
  • Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants
  • Professional Malpractice Law – Defendants

Eight more attorneys at Hart Wagner were honored in the 2018 guide, with some receiving recognition in multiple practice areas:

  • Troy Bundy:  Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants
  • John Hart:  Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants; Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants
  • Matthew Kalmanson:  Appellate Practice
  • Karen O’Kasey: Ethics and Professional Responsibility Law; Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants; Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants; Professional Malpractice Law – Defendants
  • Janet Schroer:  Appellate Practice; Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants; Professional Malpractice Law – Defendants
  • Jennifer Truzzolino:  Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants
  • Gordon Welborn:  Ethics and Professional Responsibility Law; Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants; Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants; Professional Malpractice Law – Defendants (For Redmond, OR)
  • Michael Wiswall:  Ethics and Professional Responsibility Law; Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants; Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants; Professional Malpractice Law – Defendants

Since it was first published in 1983, The Best Lawyers in America has become known as the most respected peer-review publication in the legal profession.

September 20, 2017

Seven Hart Wagner Attorneys Named to Oregon Super Lawyers List and Three Named to Rising Stars

Ten lawyers from Hart Wagner were honored in the 2017 issue of Oregon Super Lawyers magazine. The publication identifies the most outstanding attorneys in the state, as chosen by their peers and through the research of Super Lawyers, which is a Thomson Reuters business.

Of note, Karen O’Kasey and Gordon Welborn were recognized for being among the Top 50 attorneys in Oregon, and Janet Schroer and Karen O’Kasey were included in the Top 25 women lawyers in Oregon.

In its Oregon 2017 Super Lawyers list, the following Hart Wagner partners were recognized in these designated practice areas:

Troy Bundy – Personal Injury Medical Malpractice: Defense

John Hart – Personal Injury Medical Malpractice: Defense

Rodney K. Norton – Personal Injury Medical Malpractice: Defense

Karen O’Kasey – Employment Litigation: Defense

Janet Schroer – Appellate

Gordon Welborn – Professional Liability: Defense

Michael Wiswall – Personal Injury Medical Malpractice: Defense

Hart Wagner associates Michael Jacobs and Mark C. Sherman, along with partner Melissa Lopeman Tahir, were selected to the 2017 Rising Stars list.  Jacobs was recognized in the Personal Injury General: Defense category, Sherman in Employment Litigation: Defense and Tahir was honored in the Personal Injury Medical Malpractice: Defense category.  While up to five percent of the lawyers in the state are named to the Super Lawyers roster, no more than 2.5 percent are named to the Rising Stars list.

Each year, the research team at Super Lawyers undertakes a multi-phase selection process that includes a statewide survey of lawyers, independent evaluation of candidates by the attorney-led research staff, a peer review of candidates by practice area, and a good-standing and disciplinary check. The Super Lawyers lists are published nationwide in Super Lawyers magazines and in leading city and regional magazines and newspapers across the country. For more information, visit

April 26, 2017

Appellate Partner Matt Kalmanson Secures Reversal of Jury Verdict Against Hart Wagner Client

Appellate partner Matt Kalmanson secured the reversal of a jury verdict against a Hart Wagner client, in an important case of first impression that requires excess insurers to cover certain types of workers’ compensation claims.  The Court of Appeals held that the trial court should have granted a directed verdict in favor of our client.  We expect this opinion will be of great consequence to employers throughout Oregon.  The opinion can be found here:


February 06, 2017

Hart Wagner Recognized as One of Portland’s Most Diverse Law Firms

In a recent article published in The Portland Business Journal, Hart Wagner was recognized as #5 on their list of Portland’s Most Diverse Law Firms.  Firms were ranked based on the number of women and minority attorneys in their Portland metro area workforces.  The percent share for total attorneys and for partners were added together to determine the diversity rankings.


January 15, 2017

Hart Wagner Announces Two New Partners in 2017

Hart Wagner LLP has named Colleen Scott and Erika Wilson as the firm’s newest partners.  With the addition of these outstanding attorneys, the majority of the firm’s partners are women.

Colleen Scott brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the firm’s medical malpractice defense team in Portland. Her practice focuses on medical malpractice defense with a subspecialty in birth injury claims, and representing medical professionals before their licensing boards.

Erika Wilson represents medical providers before their licensing boards from Hart Wagner’s Redmond office.  She also defends physicians, hospitals and health systems, lawyers, dentists, real estate professionals, architects, engineers and construction professionals against negligence claims.  Her practice also focuses on claims of product liability, premises liability, automobile and trucking claims, governmental liability, and general liability.


December 27, 2016

Partner Joe Traylor Secures Defense Verdict for Client Adlerhorst International

Joe Traylor secures defense verdict for Adlerhorst International, a leading supplier of German Shephards to police departments across the United States.  One of the German shepherds sold to the Sherwood police department by Adlerhorst bit the police chief and then later officer Nathan Powell who sued after suffering a severe bite to his forearm which required surgery and nearly $60,000 in medical expenses.  A Federal Court jury found for Traylor’s client again after a defense verdict obtained at trial a year earlier was overturned by the Court.