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Scott Ritsema - A Lawyer Who Fights for the People

Scott Ritsema - California personal injury attorneyScott Ritsema became a California personal injury lawyer because he wanted to represent people, not corporations. He gleans maximum satisfaction from the fact that he is fighting every single day to protect the rights of catastrophically injured individuals and is helping them obtain the only form of justice that is available to them.

When he began his career as an attorney, he worked as a defense lawyer representing the interests of large corporations and insurance companies. He was still winning and building up his resume. But he found that while winning cases for corporations and insurance companies gave him professional satisfaction, he got absolutely no personal satisfaction. He had done his job well, but he was not passionate about his victories. Somehow, Ritsema found that he could comfortably rest on those laurels.

Personal Injury Law - A Calling

For Ritsema, personal injury law practice is not just a job. It's a calling. He realized the tough situations many clients are placed in when they come to a personal injury lawyer.

"These are people who, without us and without the civil justice system, have no recourse, no remedies," he says. "It's no exaggeration when I say they put their lives and their financial future in our hands."

Some may view that as a lot of pressure, but for Ritsema it's a welcome challenge. Recently, Ritsema led a Bisnar Chase legal team that obtained a $30 million judgment for 25-year-old Lucas Vogt, who suffered a catastrophic brain injury in a motorcycle accident.

For Ritsema, the satisfaction in these cases comes from providing a family the means to deal with a catastrophic injury. Ritsema's hope in this case was that Lucas Vogt would be able to have the best recovery, the best quality of life under the circumstances and that he would be able to maximize his time with his young daughter.

He also sees how many of the law firm's catastrophically injured clients face significant physical emotional and financial challenges. It's not just the victims, but also their families that suffer life-changing consequences after a traumatic event such as a catastrophic crash.

Early Life and Education

Ritsema was born in Michigan, but grew up primarily in Newport Beach. He moved back to Michigan in his teens and graduated from Grandville High School in 1979 near the top of his class and as a two-year member of the National Honor Society. Ritsema got his bachelor's degree in psychology from UCLA in 1984 and his law degree from UC Davis in 1988. He was admitted to the State Bar of California that same year.

Professional Accomplishments

Ritsema has brought over 16 trials to verdict and conducted more than 50 arbitrations to conclusion. He has handled more than 25 cases with over $100,000,000 in total recoveries and judgments for our clients.. Here are some of Ritsema's recent case results: This can include settlements, judgments and verdicts.

Scott Ritsema's Case Results
Award Amount Type of Case
$38,650,000.00 Motorcycle v. car
$24,700,000.00 Jury verdict - auto accident - defective seatback
$7,000,000.00 Caustic ingestion case
2,000,000.00 Drunk driving accident
$1,000,000.00 Auto v. pedestrian
$1,500,000.00 Dangerous roadway - negligence
$10,030.000.00 Negligence (company confidential)
$6,850.000.00 Product Liability

Career and Accomplishments

Ritsema belongs to a number of professional organizations including the Orange County Trial Lawyers Association, American Association for Justice and Consumer Attorneys of California. Mr. Ritsema was named a Best Lawyer in 2015 by the national publication, BestLawyer. In 2012, Scott Ritsema and Brian Chase were named Consumer Attorneys of the Year in all of California by the Consumer Attorney of California (CAOC), a professional association for attorneys who represent plaintiffs who seek to hold wrongdoers accountable. Despite his extremely busy schedule, Ritsema is committed to giving back to his community. He actively supports Mothers Against Drunk Driving and participates in the Susan G. Komen Walk for the Cure to help raise awareness and generate funds for breast cancer research.

An Important Member of the Bisnar Chase Family

Ritsema says he values the opportunity Bisnar Chase has given him to join the "major leagues" of personal injury litigation. "Bisnar Chase has the best environment of any place I've worked," he says. "This firm is truly unique in that respect."

Ritsema feels as if he has truly found his calling as a personal injury lawyer at Bisnar Chase. "I'm in the company of like-minded people here who have the passion to fight and win for those who have suffered tremendous losses in their lives. I consider it an honor and privilege to be able to give injured clients a voice and to fight for their rights."

Scott's State Bar Profile

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Client Reviews of Bisnar Chase

“September 15, 2012, I was T-Boned by a lady at 45 miles an hour, who was busy "adjusting her GPS" instead of watching where she was going. Needless to say the next few moments were very important. After thanking God that I was not paralyzed, I made sure that after I called my wife that the second call was going to be to Bisnar & Chase. I am familiar with this fine law firm because both my wife and daughter were in a car accident in 2008 and Bisnar & Chase came to our aid.
From all the staff to Mr Bisnar himself, they came through for me as they did for my family 5 years ago. The outcome of my case was more than I expected. I have nothing but high praise for Bisnar & Chase and would highly recommend them without question.
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“We received an email from A.G. Edwards stating they have received the settlement check from Nissan. Once again, I cannot begin to articulate our gratitude to the Bisnar Chase staff - we are so very thankful for all you have done for Josh. As parents, Charlotte and I can rest in peace, when that day comes, knowing that Josh's needs have been taken care of, and his financial future is in good hands with sound financial planners at A.G. Edwards. On December 17, 2003 we received a call from the paramedics stating that Josh and Lisa had been in a severe accident, and we needed to meet them at the emergency room. I remember telling God that I can deal with missing limbs because they can be replaced, but please do not take him from us. A month later we met with members of your staff for the first time, Josh had a traumatic brain injury and his future was looking pretty bleak; we had no idea where he would be eighteen months later. All we could think of at the time was that our son's future, his goals, and dreams had been taken from him so abruptly. As time passed, Josh continued to improve and he began his journey of recovery. Many have been involved in this process, and you and your staff have been an integral part of Josh's recovery, and we will be forever grateful. God has brought so many people into our lives, and we are so very blessed. Numerous emails were sent to Personal Injury Attorney's. John...you were on a ski trip at Big Bear with your family, and you were the only Personal Injury Attorney to respond - I believe this was divine intervention. Josh has a professor from Mt. San Jacinto College who has taken him "under his wing," and is showing him other career possibilities. John, the future looks good for Josh - thank you!”

by K N.

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“Recently, I had to find a personal injury attorney on a case that had special circumstances. I had a car accident that is almost due to expire and unfortunately, in the beginning, I decided no [sic] to get an attorney. And oh boy am I regretting it. I didn't have a lot of respect for lawyers before this. And because of that, I made the decision not to represent myself two years ago. Altho [sic] they were not able to help me, Mr. Bisnar was so helpful that he directed me in a manner that I didn't need an attorney at all. He was funny and charming. It was my fault for not going the standard route, but next time, I will definitely not hesitate to contact these attorneys for any of my legal needs. I was VERY impressed. I don't use those words lightly (especially about attorneys!) so this is no bull! neither was Mr. Bisnar of Bisnar and Chase.”

by Morgana R

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The BISNAR CHASE Difference

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    John Bisnar

    on what made him want to become a personal injury attorney

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    Brian Chase

    on whether or not you would owe money if your case was lost

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    John Bisnar

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    Brian Chase

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    John Bisnar

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