Pioneers In Earthquake, Disaster And Death Litigation

As one of the most prominent construction and failure analysis law firms in the country, Castro & Associates has led the way in helping earthquake victims resolve damage and injury claims to put their lives back together.

Prevention: In January 2018, the Castro team recovered $55 million for its clients to repair construction and seismic deficiencies, during litigation. It was reported as the largest construction recovery by the Los Angeles Daily Journal.

The attorneys at Castro & Associates have a long history of putting their skills to work to fight for individuals and families in California in disaster/earthquake death litigation. We have spent decades honing our skills and arguing on behalf of victims, presenting the most complicated cases to juries in a way that is easily understandable. Our use of technology in the courtroom and are hands-on investigations in the field have resulted in a consistent track record of success.

The firm's work in earthquake litigation began in 1994 with the Northridge Earthquake. Castro & Associates became lead trial counsel representing those affected by the 16 deaths and 230 injuries that occurred when the Northridge Meadows apartment complex collapsed. Our firm became a leading source of legal/technical information related to seismic safety in the aftermath. Attorney Joel Castro has been quoted in Los Angeles Times, the National Science Foundation and National Geographic Magazine as well as numerous national and state legal publications.

"We're trying to recover for folks who have had the worst loss known to man." - Joel Castro, founding attorney, Castro & Associates, in 1994 regarding the Northridge Earthquake. At the time, it was the costliest disaster in U.S. history.

Joel broke more new ground in his representation of the Myrick family deceased in the aftermath of the San Simeon Earthquake in Paso Robles. The 2nd Court of Appeal completely adopted Joel's view that a city ordinance mandating earthquake retrofits by a certain date did not insulate building owners from injuries or death (liability) caused by collapse of the building prior to the compliance date.

In 2009, Castro & Associates tried and won the first death cases resulting from the collapse of an URM building during the San Simeon earthquake in the landmark case Myrick v. Mastagni. California building owners were held liable for failing to retrofit unreinforced buildings that create unsafe conditions that cause death or injury to occupants. The case went to the California Supreme Court and was upheld.

Castro & Associates set a new standard for destructive testing, invasive inspections and photo documentation by obtaining an injunction against demolition until experts could perform a full failure analysis that led to the collapse of the Northridge Meadows apartments during the earthquake.