Michael Schrag has over 20 years of experience representing individual and small business plaintiffs in a broad range of complex class actions against large corporations concerning banking, credit card, insurance, telecommunications, and real estate industries. He has also successfully represented plaintiffs in product liability, personal injury, medical malpractice, employment, and contingent breach of contract cases. He currently serves on the Plaintiffs’ Executive Committee in the In Re Cattle Antitrust Litigation, on the Plaintiffs Steering Committee in the In re: Wells Fargo Collateral Protection Insurance Litigation and on the Expert Committee in the In re: Disposable Contact Lens Antitrust Litigation. He is also prosecuting “no-poach” wage suppression antitrust class actions against Burger King and Jiffy Lube and another class action against Wells Fargo for wrongfully denying over 870 borrowers loan modifications that caused many to lose their homes to foreclosure.
Michael served as Co-Lead counsel in Beaver v. Tarsadia Hotels, in which the court granted plaintiffs’ summary judgment on the issue of liability in a large unfair competition class action against real estate developers ($51.15M settlement). He has helped initiate and prosecute several class actions against Visa, MasterCard, and major U.S. banks, such as Chase and Bank of America, for failing to disclose and fixing the price of currency conversion fees charged to cardholders using credit and debit cards abroad.
Michael began his career prosecuting securities class actions and serving as a law clerk to the Honorable Judith N. Keep, U.S. District Judge, Southern District of California. Before joining Gibbs Law Group, Michael was a partner and co-founder of Meade & Schrag, LLP, where he prosecuted class actions and also litigated personal injury, medical malpractice, breach of contract, and business litigation matters.
Michael serves as court-appointed co-lead counsel representing a certified class of more than 500 home mortgage borrowers who lost their homes to foreclosure after Wells Fargo erroneously denied them trial mortgage modifications. On October 12, 2020, the Court approved an $18.5 million settlement, which will result in significant compensation payments to each class member.
Served as co-lead counsel on behalf of consumers in this unfair competition class action against real estate developers selling hotel-condominium units at the Hard Rock Hotel in San Diego. The class action alleged that sellers concealed certain Congressionally-mandated protections in the sales contracts, including a federal statutory rescission right dictating that buyers could rescind the contract for any reason within two years. After six years of hard-fought litigation, the lawsuit settled for $51.15 million. In granting final approval, Judge Curiel concluded that the settlement was "an excellent result" for the class, and noted "Class Counsel overcame several hurdles that reflect their skill and experience."
Asokan et. al. v. American General Ins. Co.
Michael was part of the trial team in this insurance and investment fraud case against American General Insurance Co, an AIG subsidiary. Michael and his team represented six plaintiffs who were marketed an investment involving a specialized American General whole life policy that when purchased through a particular defined benefit plan would supposedly provide a multitude of tax benefits. American General, however, knew but concealed from plaintiffs that its attorney had advised that because the IRS had changed its regulations, these plans no longer complied with the law. Plaintiffs suffered losses as a result of this fraud by concealment. Among other tasks, Michael had primary responsibility for working with plaintiffs’ damages expert and conducted the direct and re-direct examination of this expert at trial. The case settled for a confidential sum 8 days into the jury trial.
Serves on the court-appointed, three-firm Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee in this multi-district litigation on behalf of consumers who took out car loans from Wells Fargo and were charged for auto insurance they did not need. The parties announced a proposed settlement of at least $393.5 million for affected consumers and the Court granted preliminary approval in August 2019. Final approval is pending.
Ammari v. Pacific Bell Directory
Represented consumers who overpaid an AT&T subsidiary for advertising in Yellow Pages directories. Plaintiffs prevailed at trial and on two appeals to obtain a $27 million judgment for class members, a result the National Law Journal deemed as one of the top 100 verdicts in 2009.
In re Currency Conversion Fee Antitrust Litigation
After prevailing at trial in a related state court action, plaintiffs negotiated a $336 million global settlement for the class in this multidistrict antitrust litigation against the country’s largest credit card issuers and networks.
In re Sulzer Hip Prosthesis and Knee Prosthesis Liability Litigation
Recovered over $10 million on behalf of his clients in this multidistrict litigation that awarded a total of $1 billion to patients who received defective hip implants.