Before taking on the ocean or opposing counsel, Thomas Frost arrives prepared.
Growing up in Del Mar, the avid sailor and surfer caught the competitive spirit early. It serves him – and his clients – well. One result: He was one of The Daily Transcript's Top 10 Attorneys in 2012 in the area of corporate litigation.
"As a fundamental policy, I front-load cases with a tremendous amount of time and energy. From the outset of my representation, I thoroughly analyze the nature and merits of the prospective claims and defenses, and I focus particularly on damages and the potential collectability of any award," said Frost, managing partner of The Frost Firm in downtown San Diego.
"I ensure my clients and I are comfortable in all of those areas, and are fully prepared to embrace the risks, costs and benefits of proceeding with litigation, which obviously is a very serious and tumultuous life event. I outline the many potential outcomes of my cases in great detail at the inception, anticipating as many potential twists and turns as possible, before proposing or accepting a retainer arrangement, to avoid surprises whenever possible. Once retained, I vigorously pursue a combination of formal discovery and independent investigation in all cases as early as possible. That's the way to win cases."
After earning a bachelor's degree from UCLA in 1992 and a juris doctor degree from the USC Gould School of Law in 1996, Frost worked for large multinational firms, analyzing "warehouses" of documents in antitrust cases. In 1999, he joined the San Diego office of what was then Shustak, Jalil & Heller (now Shustak & Partners, P.C.), focusing on securities and business litigation. Frost honed his trial skills over many years as lead trial counsel in numerous FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) arbitrations and securities-related disputes in federal and state courts across the country. He became a named partner of the firm before starting his own law firm two years ago.
"I certainly was proud of a San Diego case in 2008 in which I represented two adult orphaned individuals who were to inherit the family fortune when they reached the age of maturity," he said. "They learned at that time that their broker and the trustee of their estate had embezzled and squandered the entire family estate, and they were left penniless.
"The pervasive fraud at issue in that case occurred over a 20-year period. Assessing and proving damages seemed an insurmountable task. But I prevailed at trial against LPL Financial and its registered representative and recovered a $1.8 million award and put the two young-adult siblings back on track to start their lives with their young families. Empowering these young, brave families, devastated and demoralized by grave financial injustice at the hands of a trusted fiduciary, against insurmountable odds and a top-flight defense, was emotional and rewarding beyond words, and a great career accomplishment."
People who find themselves in similar circumstances should be prepared when they interview prospective counsel, Frost said.
"Clients should inquire diligently regarding prospective counsel's track record recovering awards after trial, and whether any awards recovered actually have been collected. Qualified prospective counsel will readily discuss their track record and experience in the various forums in which they practice and, clients should ensure prospective counsel has substantial experience and achievements in the particular forums in which their cases likely will be adjudicated."
1010 Second Avenue | San Diego, CA 92101 | (619) 822-1740 | www.thefrostfirm.com