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Meet Michelle | Partner

Michelle Roberts

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Since 2005, Michelle Roberts has been a successful advocate for disabled individuals and employees. Michelle specializes in claims for benefits under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), specifically claims for disability benefits. Michelle has helped numerous clients obtain short and long -term disability benefits from insurance companies that had wrongfully denied their claims.

Michelle serves as the President for the Northern District of California Chapter of the Federal Bar Association. She is an editor of the ABA’s Section of Labor & Employment Law’s Employee Benefits Committee (EBC) Newsletter and has recently been appointed to serve on the Board of Senior Editors of the Employee Benefits Law book. She is also a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation. In 2015, 2016, and 2017, Michelle was named a “Super Lawyer” by Northern California Super Lawyers Magazine (and was previously named a “Rising Star” for 2012, 2013, and 2014). She also received the 2015 ALRP Volunteer of the Year award and the Martindale-Hubbell Client Distinction award. Michelle served as a co-chair of the Ethics subcommittee of the ABA’s Section of Labor & Employment Law’s Employee Benefits Committee (EBC) from 2009 through 2014. She served as co-chair of the Welfare Plans – Benefit Claims and Social Media subcommittees from 2014-2015. Additionally, from 2013-2015, Michelle served as an EBC liaison to the Section’s Diversity in the Legal Profession Standing Committee.

The theme of Michelle’s life has been a determination to fight for the underdog. Her work is a natural extension of that theme. She values hard work above most other things in her life. She often finds herself preoccupied with how to fix a client’s problem or how to fix ERISA on a larger scale. Helping clients with disabilities became a personal mission of hers after seeing her father, a disabled veteran, struggle to work and support his family while dealing with the consequences of debilitating medical conditions. She likes to think she inherited her strong work ethic, compassion, and desire to serve from her father. Michelle also values taking advantage of every opportunity for personal growth, and is always looking for a way to become a better person. Fighting for clients and raising children in a busy city is pretty all consuming, but she is as happy as she’s ever been, and wouldn’t have it any other way. For fun and relaxation, Michelle enjoys the ritual of Soul Cycle in the mornings so that she can come into the office with a clear head and ready to face the challenges that may lie ahead. She also tries to practice mindfulness throughout the day, which helps her stay calm in stressful situations. At the end of the day, she enjoy listening to music on her commute home, and then seeing the smiling faces of her two kids when she picks them up from school. In addition to work and family, Michelle volunteers with the Federal Bar Association, the Legal Aid at Work Workers’ Rights Clinic, and the AIDS Legal Referral Panel. She hopes to show her kids by example that giving to others is the best way to lead a life of fulfillment.

Admissions

  • California, 2005
  • Illinois, 2017
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 9th Circuit, 2005
  • U.S. District Court Central District of California, 2006
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of California, 2006
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of California, 2006
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of California, 2006
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 2013
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 6th Circuit, 2014
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, 2016

Education

  • Boalt Hall School of Law, University of California, Berkeley, California
  • University of California, Riverside, Riverside, California
    B.A. – 2002
    Major: Economics/Law & Society
    Major: Political Science
    Summa cum laude (top 2%)

Notable Cases

Publications

  • Author, ERISA LITIGATION, Sixth Edition; Ch. 17: Personal Jurisdiction (BNA) (forthcoming);
  • Author, ERISA LITIGATION, Sixth Edition; Ch. 26: Disability Benefit Claims (BNA) (forthcoming);
  • Author, ERISA LITIGATION, Fifth Edition; Ch. 17: Personal Jurisdiction (BNA 2015 Supplement);
  • Co-Author, ERISA LITIGATION, Fifth Edition; Ch. 14: Subject Matter Jurisdiction (BNA 2015 Supplement);
  • Co-author of article titled “Anatomy of a Benefit Claim – Practical Presuit considerations and How to Ensure a Strong Record for Litigation,” published in the summer 2015 edition of the Brief;
  • Author of Kantor & Kantor LLP’s weekly ERISA Watch Newsletter circulated to ERISA attorneys nationwide;
  • Author of article titled “How ERISA Can Provide Equitable Monetary Relief in Breach of Fiduciary Duty Claims,” published by the ABA TIPS Health and Disability & Life Insurance Law Committee Newsletter, Fall 2014;
  • Contributing Author, EMPLOYEE BENEFITS LAW, Third Edition; Chapter 14: Liability Issues Unique to Welfare Plans (BNA 2015 Supplement); Chapter 20: Ethics, Privilege, and Related Concerns in the Practice of Benefits Law (BNA 2009, 2010, 2012, 2014 Supplement); Chapter 13: Benefit Claims and Individual Rights (BNA, 2006, 2007, and 2008 Supplement);
  • Chapter Editor, EMPLOYEE BENEFITS LAW, Spring 2013 Supplement; and
  • Author of numerous columns for the Los Angeles/San Francisco Daily Journal regarding current ERISA issues.

Speaking Appearances

  • Speaker at the ERISA Benefits Litigation: How to Prosecute and Defend an Employee Benefits Lawsuit Governed by ERISA CLE hosted by the Litigation and Tax Section of the Bar Association of San Francisco (March 2017);
  • Speaker at the 14th National Forum on ERISA Litigation. Topic: Ethics and The Fiduciary Exception to Attorney-Client Privilege (March 2017);
  • Speaker at the 20th National Advanced Forum on Litigating Disability Insurance Claims. Topic: The Evolving State of New Remedies & Equitable Relief Under ERISA § 502(a)(3) (Feb. 2017);
  • Speaker at the 19th National Advanced Forum on Litigating Disability Insurance Claims. Topic: The Evolving State of New Remedies & Equitable Relief Under ERISA § 502(a)(3) (Sep. 2016);
  • Speaker at the Joint Committee on Employee Benefits (JCEB) Webinar “The Basics of Benefit Claims” (Sep. 2016);
  • Speaker at the 2016 Joint Committee on Employee Benefits ERISA Litigation National Institute conference. Topics: Discovery in ERISA Litigation—FRCP 26-34, ESI, and FOIA Requests& A Practical Guide to Ethics in ERISA Litigation;
  • Speaker at 2016 Midwinter Meeting of the Section of Labor & Employment Law Employee Benefits Committee, sponsored by ABA. Topic: Interaction ERISA 502(a)(3) and 502(a)(1)(B) claims;
  • Speaker at the Joint Committee on Employee Benefits (JCEB) Webinar “Expert’s Guide to Research” (Nov. 2015);
  • Speaker at the American Association for Justice (AAJ) 2015 Annual Convention in Montreal, Canada. Social Security Section/ERISA, Health and Disability Insurance Litigation Group. Topic: Wide World of Post-Amara ERISA Remedies;
  • Speaker at the 2015 Midwinter Meeting of the Section of Labor & Employment Law Employee Benefits Committee (EBC), sponsored by the ABA on Benefit and Fiduciary Claims; The Impact of Procedural Issues;
  • Speaker at the 2014 Federal Bar Association (FBA) CLE Webinar on Disability Claims Under ERISA;
  • Speaker at the 2014 National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA) Annual Convention on ERISA Remedies;
  • Faculty Speaker at the 2013 Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles (CAALA) Annual Las Vegas Convention on ERISA Liens;
  • Ethics panelist at Midwinter Meetings of the EBC (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013);
  • *E*verything *R*eally *I*sn’t *S*o *A*wful – an Overview of the Current Landscape of ERISA Preemption & Remedies; Consumer Attorneys of California (“CAOC”) Convention 2012; and
  • Faculty Speaker for CLE sponsored by the Rossdale Group LLP: Mastering Veterans’ Benefits, Social Security, & Disability Law on May 16, 2012.

What Sets Us Apart?

  • Free Case Consultations Provided
  • 160+ Years' Collective Experience
  • Thousands Of Cases Successfully Handled
  • You Don't Pay Us Unless We Recover Your Claim
  • Selected For Inclusion In The List Of Super Lawyers®

Client Testimonials

  • We will never forget the good you have done and may you continue to earn gold stars.

    “More than your skilled expertise, uncompromising professionalism and breadth of experience, we have been immensely impressed with the sincerity, generosity and integrity with which you conducted our affairs, acted on our behalf and guided us through the sometimes confusing process. Throughout, we developed a great respect for all of you and it is our wish that both collectively and individually, you experience continued professional success and personal gratification in all that you pursue. We will never forget the good you have done and may you continue to earn gold stars.”

    Lalida C.

  • I won the appeal.

    “Hi Glenn- This is a very belated thank you for your generous assistance and advice last summer, when I was appealing UBH's decision for my son. I won the appeal, at least for care at the partial hospitalization level (they wouldn't budge on residential, but the facility was accepting the partial care reimbursement for residential treatment). But the appeal was a great moral victory, and I think it's a great thing to have in the record, just in case he needs to go for treatment again. Thanks again for your generous help, I was very grateful for it. Wishing you a most happy Thanksgiving.”

    Terry S.

  • Truly outstanding in every way!

    “Both Glenn Kantor and his associate attorney Brent Brehm are truly experts in the field of disability law. They handled a complex individual disability policy issue for me. Their knowledge of the law, coupled with their experience, resources, and tactical skills, helped me obtain results that exceeded my expectations. Truly outstanding in every way!”

    Anonymous

  • With you in my corner, I felt enabled and no longer alone.

    “Seemingly at the end of my rope with nowhere to turn, a friend suggested I call the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, who referred me to you. From our first contact I began to feel hope where there had been none. You took over all communication with the insurance company. You kept me posted as things progressed and advised me as to each necessary action. What a relief you were! With you in my corner, I felt enabled and no longer alone. Some big insurance companies feel emboldened to take arbitrary action against those who do not have the resources to defend what is rightfully theirs. Thank goodness for people like you who advocate for folks in need. In closing, please know how very much our association has meant. You have restored my faith in the goodness of people and renewed my confidence in the future. I am forever grateful.”

    Shirley G.

  • Thank you for all of your hard work, support and belief in our case.

    “Hi Elizabeth - You have been such an important part of my and Jennifer's past year, and I want to send you a note to wish you a wonderful holiday. Thank you for all of your hard work, support and belief in our case. Thank you seems like two small words and not enough, but they are heartfelt and mean so much.”

    J.H.