Michael P. Obert, Jr.

Partner

  • location icon Phoenix, AZ
    2929 North Central Avenue
    Phoenix, AZ 85012

Michael Obert is a partner in the Phoenix office of Lewis Brisbois and a member of the Professional Liability Practice. Mr. Obert practices virtually all aspects of professional liability defense matters. In addition to financial professionals, Mr. Obert has represented insurance agents, real estate professionals,  home owners associations and architects/engineers. Mr. Obert’s practice also includes the other insurance defense claims and commercial litigation, including claims against debt collectors, bookkeepers and accountants, premises liability claims, products liability claims, contract claims, and automobile accidents. 

Mr. Obert is a lead trial attorney with experience in numerous jury trials, evidentiary arbitrations, bench trials and other arbitrations. Two of Mr. Obert’s litigated matters were recognized by the WI Law Journal in 2003 as among its “Significant Defense Verdicts.”

Financial Professionals

In 2013, Mr. Obert successfully prevented a suit accusing a client of selling certain insurance products that were allegedly unsuitable from being sent to FINRA arbitration. After previously stipulating to dismiss claims in state court, the plaintiffs tried to reallege their claims in FINRA arbitration. Mr. Obert convinced the FINRA panel to dismiss the claims on the grounds that FINRA lacked jurisdiction and that the claims had already been released.

Real Estate Professionals

Mr. Obert’s real estate cases include defense of all types of real estate professionals including brokers, agents, mortgage professionals, home inspectors, appraisers, title companies, developers, landlords, and due diligence companies. Recent successes in this area have included:

  • In 2008, Mr. Obert obtained a defense verdict at arbitration in a home inspection case alleging a failure to identify termite damage.
  • In 2009, as a result of a motion for summary judgment filed by Mr. Obert, a real estate investor agreed to dismiss an alleged $13 million claim against a due diligence company for less than the cost of defense.

Architects/Engineers/Construction

  • In 2001, Mr. Obert successfully prosecuted a trial against a company that designed and installed a petroleum fuel delivery system for cheese processing factory. The jury returned a verdict in favor of Mr. Obert’s client which doubled system installer’s highest offer before trial.
  • In 2002, Mr. Obert successfully defended an architectural firm for allegedly improperly designing a natatorium building and improper supervision of the contractor during construction. Following AAA arbitration, the panel awarded damages less than the architectural firm’s the pre-arbitration offer.
  • In 2005, Mr. Obert successfully defended a case against a pallet manufacturing company alleging that its improper storage of pallets caused a fire to spread to nearby properties. After trial, the jury returned a defense verdict.
  • In 2006, Mr. Obert obtained a summary judgment ruling for an engineering firm against claims that it allegedly negligently designed and supervised a road improvement project, causing significant delay to the contractor. In summary judgment, the court dismissed the claims against the engineering firm, finding that the contractor’s claims were barred by the economic loss doctrine. The matter settled after appeal.
  • In 2009, Mr. Obert successfully obtained a motion to dismiss a complaint against an engineering firm who provided plans for the development of a subdivision.
  • In 2013, Mr. Obert obtained a summary judgment on behalf of a plumbing company that serviced reverse osmosis filtration systems against alleged liability for a leak that occurred over three years after the company's last service. Mr. Obert successfully argued that the claims against the plumbing company lacked any evidence of a causal relationship between the company's work and the alleged leak.

Publications

“An Overview of Wages and Hours Laws in Wisconsin,” State Bar Young Lawyers Division “Bridge the Gap” Series April, 1998

Admissions

Arizona

Associations

  • Arizona Association of Defense Counsel - Member, Board of Directors
  • State Bar of Arizona

Education

University of Wisconsin Law School

Juris Doctor, cum laude, 1996

University of Wisconsin - Madison

Bachelor of Science, with distinction, 1992

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