Schneider, Richard J.



RJS 2017









Tort Litigation | Public Entities | Employment

858-755-5666  ext. 7156



  • University of San Diego, J.D., December 1984
  • University of Minnesota, B.A. in Psychology,  August 1982

Bar Admissions

  • State Bar of California
  • All U.S. District Courts in California (Southern, Central, Eastern and Northern Districts)
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. Supreme Court

Rick Schneider joined Daley & Heft in 1985, right out of law school, and has been with the firm ever since.  A partner since 1990 Rick has litigated hundreds of cases – typically representing public entities – in all four U.S. District Courts in California and 27 of California’s 58 Counties.  These cases have involved a broad range of civil claims.  43 of these cases have proceeded to trial, in 9 of these jurisdictions.  Rick there achieved a success rate of over 90% in favor of his clients.

Rick is also called upon by excess carriers/re-insurers – again, typically for public entities – who are concerned that the underlying limits are not sufficient to resolve the matter.  Sometimes he is asked to take over the defense on the eve of trial, sometimes to associate with the insured’s counsel and often to act as the carrier’s negotiator.  Representative examples of these assignments within the recent past are:

  • A 7 year boy on his way home from school was struck by a left – turning City garbage truck and dragged under the entire length of the vehicle. He suffered massive internal injuries and the amputation of one leg. By the time of trial he had undergone 50 surgeries, and was expected to undergo many more in the near future. His past, recoverable medical expenses were $3.2 million and his life care plan was valued at $16-17 million. Assuming the defense shortly before trial Rick was able to arrange an $18.5 million settlement.
  • A 31 year old woman was shot in the face with a gun-powder charged pepper spray device – at point blank range – during a DUI stop. She was permanently blinded in both eyes, and the officer is facing criminal charges for using excessive force. 7 members of her immediate family witnessed the shooting and filed by-stander claims.  As lead defense counsel Rick was able to secure a settlement with all 8 plaintiffs for $18.5 million. A cross-claim for products liability is pending in the Central District against the manufacturing chain.
  • The insured County contracted with a third party for jail house medical care. The provider’s carrier refused to accept the County’s contractual tender of indemnity. Acting as the re-insurer’s negotiator Rick was able to forge an agreement at mediation that the carrier would treat the County as an additional insured. The provider’s carrier subsequently settled with the remaining family members on behalf of the insured County, in what has been reported to be “the largest civil rights settlement in California history.”

These are but a few examples, and Rick would be happy to discuss these and other matters in further detail if you are interested.