Overview

Eric Buescher is a partner at Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy, LLP where he works on fraud cases as well as water and land use litigation. Eric focuses on the federal and California False Claims Acts, financial elder abuse, and complex mass torts actions, representing whistleblowers who expose large-scale corporate fraud, and the victims of large-scale corporate fraud. Eric also advocates for public rights to use and access open spaces including the protection of access to California’s beaches under the California Coastal Act.

Eric represents both whistleblowers and employees in qui tam suits in a wide range of federal and state False Claims Act suits. His clients have ranged from founders of healthcare start-up businesses trying to compete against unfair and fraudulent practices to employees terminated for trying to stop fraudulent practices in their own workplaces. He has worked on cases involving fraud in healthcare, energy, software, and information technology.

Eric also represents consumers and victims of financial elder abuse and large scale fraud and tortious conduct. Eric has worked with seniors to unwind complex financial transactions that jeopardized their homes and on behalf of the families of seniors whose estates were stolen or diverted. Eric also works on mass tort cases, representing dozens or hundreds of victims of wide scale wrongdoing, ranging from real estate fraud to victims of floods.

In Eric's work to protect the public’s rights to use, access, preserve, and protect open spaces, especially California’s beaches, he successfully represented Surfrider Foundation in a lawsuit over beach access at Martins Beach under the California Coastal Act, through trial and appeal. In addition, Eric has worked on trial and appellate matters over implied dedication, in litigation under the Clean Water Act, and in lawsuits seeking accountability for the harmful impacts of pollution in California.

Eric graduated from Duke University in 2005 with a B.A. in Political Science. He received his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center in 2010. Prior to law school, he worked in Washington, DC on complex legal research projects, including locating historical source materials at the Library of Congress. Eric is a member of the San Mateo County Trial Lawyers Association and Consumer Attorneys of California.

Eric was selected as a “Rising Star” in Northern California each year form 2012 to 2020. In addition, Eric has twice been selected as a member of The National Trial Layers Top 40 Under 40 in California.

Experience

Representative Matters:

  • In 2013, Surfrider Foundation filed a lawsuit over the closure of public access at Martin’s Beach near Half Moon Bay. Eric was the lead attorney at trial and on appeal, with Surfrider prevailing at each step, culminating in the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2018 denial of the owner’s petition for cert. The case resulted in a court order requiring historical access to remain available at Martin’s Beach and a published California Court of Appeal decision protecting the public’s access to the California coast.
  • Eric was one of the lead attorneys’ representing individual condominium owners in the Millennium Tower litigation. The lawsuits were filed when reports that the luxury high-rise was sinking and tilting came to light. The plaintiffs alleged the developer knew about the issue yet did not disclose it to purchasers, and that the neighboring development of the Transbay Terminal had contributed to the problem. The suit involved more than 250 unit owners, the HOA, the developers of the Millennium Tower and three neighboring structures, and over a hundred cross-defendants and insurers. In 2020, the parties reached a global settlement agreement.
  • CPM represented a whistleblower in a series of cases in states around the country resulting in a total recovery of over $300 million as well as a decision by Virginia’s Supreme Court about the rights of whisteblowers. Eric was the lead attorney on the appeal, arguing that the award to the whistleblower that is provided for under Virginia’s false claims act had been miscalculated and underpaid. As a result of the decision, the amount our client recovered more than doubled.
  • Eric was counsel for a whistleblower alleging fraud by a diagnostic laboratory for providing kickbacks to physicians in violation of the False Claims Act. In denying the defendant’s motion to dismiss, the federal court held that a diagnostic laboratory provides a illegal kickback in violation of the false claims act when it agrees with a physician to waive the doctor’s patient’s copayments and deductibles. The suit ultimately resulted in a settlement in excess of $25 million.
  • Eric represented two employees of a non-profit entity providing mental health services to some of California’s most disadvantaged and troubled youth. The suit alleged the facility was not providing the care that was required by law. The suit was settled on behalf of six California counties as well as the qui tam plaintiffs for $3.25 million.
  • Eric was one of a team of trial attorneys on behalf of a family of an 89 year old victim of financial elder abuse. In the final months of his life, “Uncle Rudy’s” neighbor hatched a scheme to obtain his estate when he died. The neighbor’s plan was uncovered when he claimed to have discovered an amended will and trust in the trash can several days after Uncle Rudy passed away. At trial, a unanimous verdict determined that the neighbor had engaged in elder abuse. The case resulted in the return of the Uncle’s estate, valued at over $1.5mm, as well as a damages and attorneys’ fees award of over $900,000.
  • Eric was lead counsel in a case on behalf of two seniors who alleged their son’s girlfriend had fraudulently borrowed nearly $1.5mm in their name and secured by the home in San Bruno where they had lived for decades. The suit alleged the title company had conspired with the girlfriend, and had allowed the loans to go through despite the victim writing “under duress” on the signature page of the agreements while present in the title company’s office. The case settled favorably allowing the clients to stay in their home and recover their losses.
  • Eric represented a class of victims in a suit against an oil company for underpayment of contractual royalties. The lawsuit was certified as a class in California’s courts and was eventually settled for $10,000,000.
  • Eric has also represented numerous individual employees in claims related to wrongful termination, harassment, discrimination, and retaliation.

News

News

Publications

Blog Posts

Honors & Awards

Honors & Recognitions

Super Lawyers Northern California Rising Star (2012 - 2020)

National Trial Lawyers Association Top 40 Under 40 (2016, 2017)

Affiliations

San Mateo Trial Lawyers Association, Member

Consumer Attorneys of California, Member

Education

Duke University, B.A., 2005

Georgetown University Law Center, J.D. 2010

Clerkships

  • Interned for Magistrate Judge John M. Facciola of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia

Admissions

  • California
  • All Federal Courts in California
  • United States Supreme Court
  • 4th Circuit Court of Appeals
  • 9th Circuit Court of Appeals
  • Washington, DC
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