Past President Of The California Trial Lawyers (CAOC)

Past President Of The California Trial Lawyers (CAOC)

Don Ernst was President of the Trial Lawyers throughout all of California, known as the Consumer Attorneys of California, in 2008. He was the first President of the Trial Lawyers from San Luis Obispo County, one of the largest trial lawyer organizations in the nation. He was instrumental to helping the organization refocus in an election year, a feat that has not been forgotten by members of CAOC

California Trial Lawyer Of The Year Nominee

Don Ernst, Ray Mattison and Rob Gianelli were nominated to be California’s Trial Lawyers of the Year in 2011. This is an honor of the highest caliber. There are close to 250,000 attorneys in California, and Don Ernst was nominated alongside just seven other lawyers.

Central Coast Trial Lawyer Of The Year

Don Ernst has won Trial Lawyer of the Year in 1998, 2002 and 2008. We believe this is the highest number of awards won by a trial lawyer in the San Luis Obispo area. Each award represents a case where the client received above and beyond skill, that translated into a large verdict.

SuperLawyers 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011

The Ernst Law Group has been named as Super Lawyers the last four consecutive years. SuperLawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high-degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The selection process is multi-phased and includes independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations.

Edward I. Pollock Award

Don Ernst was honored with the Edward I. Pollock Award, given “in recognition of many years of dedication, outstanding efforts and effectiveness on behalf of the causes and ideals. This award is given to only one attorney per year in the entire state of California. Don spearheaded the California Electronic Discovery Act, which was signed into law in 2009. The act extends the Civil Discovery Act to the production of electronically stored information and, for the first time, provides basic standards for California judges. This prevents the legal tactic of turning over complicated and unobtainable electronic documents. Lawyers across the state were enthusiastic about the fairness of the act.

2007 California Lawyer Of The Year In Disability Rights

In 2007, Terry Kilpatrick won a $221,000 judgment against the city of Riverside for inadequate wheelchair ramps. This judgement was the single largest award for plaintiff in a disability-access case. The judgment stands out, because afterwards there was a decade-long legal fight, forced the city to retool nearly 200 of its ramps within four months of the judgment to make them an accessible slope, as required by the Americans With Disabilities Act.

10 Out Of 10 AVVO Rating

Rating of 10 out of 10 from the attorney rating system AVVO. AVVO, a leading International Attorney community and directory, has ranked Don Ernst with the highest possible endorsement: 10 out of 10. This is a prestigious honor and speaks volumes about the Ernst Law Group’s service to their clients and their community.

Received Highest Rating For Ethics And Legal Skills – AV Rated

AV Rated – Highest Rating of Ethics and Skill by Martindale Hubble The Martindale-Hubbell ratings are a Peer review system designed to give an objective rating of lawyer’s ethical and professional ability. These occur when other attorneys are contacted and rate the conduct of the attorney under review.


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There are five different key areas for rating:

The AV Rating is the highest rating. It is a significant rating accomplishment, and a testament fact that a lawyer’s peers rank him or her at the highest level of professional excellence.