Pat Olsson’s practice emphasizes employment, health care law, and medical malpractice defense. Since 1983, she has tried numerous cases before state and federal trial courts and has conducted an active appellate practice in the federal and state courts of appeals. Ms. Olsson was inducted into the American College of Trial Lawyers (ACTL) in October 2003, and served as Idaho State Chair for three years, ending in 2010. She continues to be active in the ACTL’s committees.
In the employment law arena, Ms. Olsson’s practice emphasizes employment-related litigation and preventive counseling on employment issues. She represents clients in matters raising diverse issues under the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1991, the Family and Medical Leave Act, and state equal opportunity acts. Her recent trial victories include:
- Defense verdict for a prominent Idaho employer after an eight-day federal court trial over FMLA issues.
- Summary judgment for a large Idaho employer in a Title VII retaliation case brought by the EEOC.
- Defense jury verdict for an employer after a nine-day trial alleging violations of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act.
- Defense verdict for an employer after a nine-day trial alleging multiple violations of Title VII gender discrimination, harassment, and discrimination.
- Several summary judgment decisions for an employer in lawsuits alleging violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
- Several significant summary judgments, affirmed by the Idaho Supreme Court and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, involving whistleblowing, sexual harassment, and age discrimination claims.
- Defense verdicts in personal injury actions involving substantial damages.
- Defense verdicts in complex commercial litigation cases.
- Numerous successful resolutions of matters involving significant exposures through mediation.
Ms. Olsson’s medical malpractice experience includes numerous summary judgment decisions for physicians, and includes acting as lead counsel in the significant Dulaney v. St. Alphonsus Regional Medical Center decision, 137 Idaho 160, 45 P.3d 813 (2002), which affirmed the local standard of care rule in Idaho. She has obtained summary judgments for physicians in numerous medical malpractice cases, as well as successfully tried medical malpractice cases to defense verdict. She frequently advises physicians and hospitals on legal issues and health care issues, and has conducted extensive risk management training of doctors and hospitals through her years of practice.
Recent cases include:
- Numerous defense verdicts in medical malpractice cases, including Harrison v. Binnion, 147 Idaho 645 (2009).
- Successfully defending a multi-week medical malpractice case.
- Acting as lead counsel in Dulaney v. St. Alphonsus Regional Medical Center, 45 P.3d 816, 137 Idaho 160 (2002), a key Idaho case reaffirming the local standard of care rule in Idaho.
- Obtaining a defense verdict following a five-week trial on behalf of a general surgeon alleged to have negligently failed to diagnose a cervical fracture.
- Successfully defending an obstetrician in a two-week trial involving allegations of failure to diagnose uterine polyps and improper prescription of hormones.
- Successfully defending a physician in a two-week trial against claims that the negligent administration of an allergy shot program and anaphylaxis caused brain damage.
In the health care law arena, Ms. Olsson frequently advises hospitals and physicians on issues relating to the False Claims Act, Stark I and II, the Anti-Kickback Law, EMTALA, HIPAA, the PPACA, medical staff bylaws, privileging and credentialing issues, and the numerous other questions raised by federal and state laws, as well as TJC rules that affect relationships between doctors, hospitals, and other entities such as governmental and other third party payors. She has successfully investigated, defended, and resolved qui tam cases. Ms. Olsson has expertise in laws and international treaties governing clinical research on human subjects, and has completed the CITI Program for the Protection of Human Research Subjects course. She regularly reviews Clinical Trial Agreements, informed consent documents, and other matters pertaining to the multitude of clinical studies underway in southern Idaho.
Some of Ms. Olsson’s significant cases include:
- Harrison v. Binnion, 147 Idaho 645 (2009).
- LaFay v. Micron Tech., Case No. CV-05-287-S-BLW (United States District Court, District of Idaho, 2007).
- Rudd v. Merritt, 138 Idaho 526, 66 P.3d 230 (Idaho 2003).
- Dulaney v. St. Alphonsus, 137 Idaho 160, 45 P.3d 816 (Idaho 2002).
- EEOC v. Micron Tech. Inc., 2002 U.S. App. LEXIS 5316 (9th Cir. 2002).
- Strongman v. Idaho Potato Comm’n, 129 Idaho 766, 932 P.2d 889 (Idaho 1997).
- K. Hefner, Inc. v. Caremark, Inc., 128 Idaho 726, 918 P.2d 595 (Idaho 1996).
- Meckert v. Transamerica Ins. Co., 108 Idaho 597, 701 P.2d 217 (Idaho 1985).
- Santana v. Zilog, Inc., 878 F. Supp. 1373 (D. Idaho 1984).
- Meckert v. Transamerica Ins. Co., 742 F.2d 505 (9th Cir. 1984).
- Successfully resolving a multi-million dollar appeal of property taxes.
Ratings & Recognitions
- American College of Trial Lawyers, Fellow
- Litigation Counsel of America – Trial Lawyer Honorary Society, Fellow
- Martindale Hubble – AV Preeminent Rating
- Best Lawyers® Lawyer of the Year 2017 – Labor Law – Management
- Best Lawyers® Lawyer of the Year 2015 – Labor Law–Management
- Best Lawyers® Lawyer of the Year 2014 – Employment Law–Management
- Best Lawyers® Lawyer of the Year 2013 – Labor Law – Management
- Chambers and Partners – Employment Law(Chambers and Partners identifies and ranks the most outstanding law firms and lawyers in over 180 jurisdictions throughout the world.)
- Super Lawyers
- Top 50 Women Lawyers of the Mountain States
- Vern Emery Award – one of the most prestigious awards bestowed upon a volunteer
- J.D., Chicago-Kent College of Law, Illinois Institute of Technology, with high honors, 1983
- B.A., New College of the University of South Florida, 1976
- Idaho State and Federal Courts
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
- U.S. Supreme Court
Professional & Civic Activities
- American Bar Foundation, Life Fellow
- American Employment Law Council
- American Health Lawyers’ Association
- American Bar Association – Employment Law Section
- Idaho Association of Defense Counsel
- Idaho State Bar Employment Law Section
- International Association of Defense Counsel
- Idaho Supreme Court Rules of Civil Procedure Committee, two terms
- The NLRB Decision and Idaho Employees, Idaho Business Review, October 2015.
- “Employment Law News Update – NLRB Decision: joint employment relationships between employers,” August 27, 2015
- “Electronic Device Work-Place Policies: One Size Does Not Fit All,” SHRM 2014 Employment Law Conference Download PDF
- Treasure Valley YMCA Board Member (2000-present), Board President (2004-2006), Treasure Valley YMCA President
- St. Luke’s Regional Medical Center, past Children’s Advisory Board
- St. Luke’s Children’s Hospital Board Chair
- Boise State University Foundation, Board Member
- St. Luke’s Humphrey’s Diabetes Center, Board Member
- Friends of Nursing Board at Boise State University, past Chair
- Founding Member of CARES – the child abuse evaluation service at St. Luke’s Regional Medical Center
- Concordia University Law School Advisory Board
- Idaho City Historical Society, Member
- “Workplace Wellness Programs – Healthy for Idaho Employers,” Idaho State Council of SHRM 2016 Employment Law Conference, September 30, 2016.