Michael J. Bidart
Class of ’71 Economics
Partner, Shernoff, Bidart & Darras
A partner with the law firm of Shernoff, Bidart & Darras in Claremont, Michael J. Bidart is acknowledged as one of the top practitioners of HMO litigation in the country. He achieved a landmark $120.5 million verdict on behalf of his client in Goodrich v. Aetna (1999). Bidart has also argued and won crucial law-making decisions totaling more than $300 million for victims of the Northridge earthquake. His determination to combat immense corporations is perhaps unusual for a farm boy from Chino, but his ethical acuity was nurtured by professors in Cal Poly Pomona’s economics department.
“All of the professors, especially Drs. Blumner and Galbraith, became trusted friends as well as teachers,” says Bidart. “I see them as honorable mentors who went out of their way to instill academic principles as well as to offer active friendship to a wet-behind-theears freshman.”
Bidart’s career is marked by his tireless support of citizen’s rights. He was instrumental in forcing the California Public Employees Retirement System to increase its healthcare benefits for female breast cancer victims and is currently battling insurance carriers on behalf of those who were displaced by recent California wildfires.
“Representing victims of corporate abuse is a risk, but it is one that I am always willing to take,” says Bidart. “I never represent insurance companies, but concentrate on serving the best needs of all citizens, making sure they are protected from insurance fraud and dangerous medical practices.”
Bidart and his wife, Jeanette, were recently honored at the University of La Verne for their contributions toward the establishment of the Michael and Jeanette Bidart Moot Court Room. In addition, Bidart is on the Loyola Marymount University Board of Regents and the Consumer Attorneys of California. In 2002, he established two President’s Council scholarships at Cal Poly Pomona in honor of his parents. Bidart was named a Super Lawyer of 2004 by Law & Politics Magazine and Los Angeles Magazine.