Paul O. Lamphere

TRIAL ATTORNEY • 1933 - 2018

Paul O. Lamphere was born and raised in the Marina district of San Francisco, California, during the tumultuous years of the Great Depression and World War II.  After graduating from Galileo High School, and the College of Marin, he voluntarily enlisted in the U.S. Army during the Korean War from 1954-1956. Thereafter, he attended the University of San Francisco and received his Bachelors of Science degree in 1957. He obtained his Juris Doctor degree from the University of San Francisco School of Law in 1960 with Phi Alpha Delta honors. He was admitted to the State Bar of California in 1961.

Paul began his law career with the State of California Department of Public Works in 1961. He was a Senior Trial Attorney with the State for 10 years, developing a specialty in eminent domain. In 1972, he became a partner with Cox, Cummins, Reinhardt & Lamphere in Martinez, California. From the early 1980's to 1996, he was a founding partner in Cummins & Lamphere, also in Martinez.  In 1996, he opened the Law Office of Paul O. Lamphere, also in Martinez, CA. In 2000, he merged his law firm with that of his son, Michael, and became a senior partner with Lamphere Law Offices, LLP, in Larkspur, California. 

Paul was formerly a member of the Contra Costa County Bar Association, the Marin County Bar Association and the State Bar of California, while in active practice. In Contra Costa, he served as a settlement conference referee and judge pro tem with the Superior Court. He was also a member of the State Committee on Condemnation from 1986-1989.

Paul was lead counsel on the following reported California cases:

People v. Redwood Hotels Corp. (1969) 269 Cal. App.2d 60;
Brown v. Critchfield (1980) 100 Cal. App.3d 858;
People v. McCoy, (1967) 248 Cal. App.2d 27;
County of Contra Costa v. Pinole Point Properties, et al., Cal CA A059820/A060525 (1994).

Paul was in active practice for 43 years until his retirement in April 2003. From 1991 to 2003, he restricted his practice to Eminent Domain (Condemnation) cases and, specifically, to the representation of property owners, tenants and business owners. He tried condemnation cases (including inverse condemnation actions) to jury verdicts in over 25 California counties, as well as the Federal District Courts in San Francisco and Sacramento. He also tried cases to verdict in the areas of real estate litigation, personal injury, medical malpractice and business disputes.

Over his legal career, Paul tried to jury verdict roughly 130 Superior Court and Federal District Court cases. He was qualified, and testified, as an expert witness in the field of condemnation/eminent domain law and procedure on various occasions in the California Superior Courts and Federal District courts. He served as a member of the State of California State Bar Committee on Condemnation. He gave seminars to professional organizations and State Bar events regarding aspects of condemnation law.  Paul also co-authored the attorney practice guide chapter “Actions Involving Eminent Domain and Inverse Condemnation” in Bancroft-Whitney’s California Civil Practice on Real Property Litigation.

Paul passed away in June of 2018. He will be greatly missed.