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Law Firm, San Diego The More You Give, The More You Get

“I can honestly say that I love representing plaintiffs in injury cases. And I do not use the word ‘love’ lightly. I enjoy getting to know my clients, helping them through a difficult time, and, ultimately, ensuring they get a fair shake through trial or settlement,” says Steve Vosseller, founder of the Vosseller Law Firm.

The firm represents plaintiffs in personal injury, product liability, and select medical malpractice cases and is now expanding into civil rights claims. Most clients are referred by other attorneys. A growing number of attorneys are asking Vosseller to step in as lead trial counsel. The Vosseller Firm includes associate attorney Sara Simmons, an experienced trial paralegal, and a legal assistant. “Our team’s experience allows us to get up to speed quickly when other lawyers ask for help shortly before trial. But, we limit the number of cases we accept so that we can focus on each client.”

Lawyers Were Making a Difference
The son of an elevator constructor, Vosseller grew up in a blue-collar neighborhood in Kansas City. His parents divorced before he was two years old and his father raised him. Despite never meeting any lawyers, Vosseller knew by the sixth grade that he wanted to become an attorney. In school and watching TV news, Vosseller learned that many of the people making a positive difference in the world were lawyers. “Fairness and doing the right thing are cornerstones of the law. I learned fairness from my dad—along with work ethic, discipline, and compassion for others. I owe everything to my dad.”

GetVosseller graduated from Washburn University in 1994 and from Washburn School of Law in 1997. After law school, he served as legislative counsel on the island of Yap in the Federated States of Micronesia. Two and a half years later, he moved to San Diego. During his first few years in San Diego, Vosseller served as an associate attorney for two civil defense firms. Although both firms featured excellent lawyers, Vosseller did not find the work personally rewarding. “At the end of a case, clients were rarely happy. Even if we successfully defended the case, the client would be relieved but still disgruntled for being subjected to a lawsuit. Meanwhile, the insurance companies were often frustrating to deal with. Although I’m thankful for the opportunities at both defense firms, I knew it wasn’t for me. ”Hoping to find the right fit for himself, Vosseller often asked attorneys from other practice areas about their job satisfaction. Many claimed to enjoy their work, but their demeanor sometimes suggested that they were merely content rather than truly happy. Vosseller recalls discussing this issue with a plaintiff lawyer before Vosseller took the plaintiff’s deposition. “I had great respect for that particular plaintiff lawyer, Chris Hulburt. When he described his work, I could tell that he truly found it rewarding, and for the right reasons. That stuck with me.”
After a couple more years of defense work, Vosseller sought to make a change. When he discovered an opportunity at Thorsnes Bartolotta McGuire, Vosseller immediately recalled his conversation with Hulburt. “I put two and two together and thought, ‘I’m going to give that a shot.’” Vosseller spent the next three years with the firm and credits much of his development to that opportunity. After a stint at the Gomez Law Firm, Vosseller opened his own office in 2012.

Helping Clients, Helping Others
Within the last six years, Vosseller has helped an array of clients, including teachers, physicians, small business owners, contractors, business executives, homemakers, students, and military personnel. Because each individual is unique, Vosseller and his team dedicate a tremendous amount of time to learning the client’s story. He notes one client who struggled to open up about the impact of a significant injury. For the client, being physically hurt was a sign of weakness and being emotionally hurt was simply unacceptable. “He took pride in being tough and was reluctant to acknowledge—even to himself—that he was deeply affected by this change to his life.” Vosseller and the client incrementally explored the client’s life before and after the injury. The client began to recognize the deep ripple effect that the injury had upon him and his family. He became comfortable opening up, even during his deposition. Just as important, the client took action to improve his relationship with his wife and son.“
We were able to make a real difference in his life, not only legally, but on a personal level. I became a lawyer because I wanted to help people. I don’t pretend to be a therapist. We simply listen to our clients and try to understand what they are going through. ”At the end of each case, Vosseller donates a portion of the firm’s attorney’s fees to a nonprofit organization chosen by the client. Recipients include Challenged Athletes Foundation, Jewish Family Services, A Night To Remember Prom, San Diego Humane Society, Mid-City Community Music, Alzheimer’s San Diego, and Shelter to Soldier. The firm also publishes community service profiles in Attorney Journal, spotlighting volunteer work by various San Diego County attorneys. “I love learning about, and publicizing, lawyers who selflessly volunteer for nonprofit organizations. ”

Surfing Up the Good Life
Surfing drew Vosseller from Kansas to the island of Yap and then to San Diego. If there are waves—and work permitting—he surfs four to five days a week. “I’m usually the first one in the water in the morning and still get to the office by 8 a.m. I escape to remote areas of Baja a couple times each year for surf trips.
”His wife, Angela Mullins, is a San Diego Deputy City Attorney and a Commander in the Navy JAG Corps reserves. Since November 2016, she’s been on full-time active duty for the Navy. They enjoy the beach, bike rides, local restaurants, and exploring Yosemite National Park at least once every year.
Vosseller’s daughter is a freshman at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and his son is a high school sophomore. When his kids were younger, surfing often took a backseat to coaching their soccer, baseball, and softball teams. “Juggling work, kids’ sports, family time, and surfing was exhausting. But, coaching their sports forced me to be more active in my kids’ lives. I would not trade those times for anything.” His son started surfing last year…opening a new realm of father-son fun.


Steve Vosseller
Vosseller Law Firm
110 West A Street,
Suite 1075 San Diego, CA 92101
(858) 429-4062

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