William B. Sturgeon

Bill Sturgeon, a trial lawyer with 40 years' experience, has special expertise in defending physicians in malpractice cases and in representing them before the Medical Board of California in administrative hearings. Bill was a senior partner and litigation head in a leading San Francisco defense firm in the 1970's and 80's. His firm represented the California Medical Association, almost all of the Northern California Medical Societies, Blue Shield of California and many individual physicians. He was then the founder, senior partner, and chief trial lawyer in his own firm for 14 years before becoming associated with Ms. Hudgins as Of Counsel to her firm in 2000.

Trial Experience

Bill has tried approximately 100 cases to jury verdict, including:

  • successfully defending Blue Shield of California against charges of bad faith;
  • successfully representing scores of physicians against allegations of medical malpractice;
  • winning reduced or dismissed charges brought against his individual physician clients in administrative hearings before the Medical Board of California.

Professional Activities

Judge, pro tem, and court-appointed arbitrator, San Francisco Superior Court, 1980-1990
Member, ABOTA (American Board of Trial Attorneys) (past)
Former President, Medical Legal Committee
Member, Defense Research Institute (past)
Member, International Association of Defense Counsel (past)
Member, Railroad Trial Lawyers Association, Emeritus

Civic Activities

Elder, Lafayette-Orinda Presbyterian Church
President and coach, Moraga Baseball League, 1978-1980
LMYA youth basketball coach, 1982-1984
District Governor, District 5150, Rotary International, 1989-1990
President, Rotary Club of San Francisco, 1987-1988

Lectures and Seminars

Mr. Sturgeon has presented programs at defense conferences, seminars to physicians and nurses as in-service programs, and lectures to attorneys on risk management, adverse events, medical legal issues, and on documentation of medical charts and legal files.

Selected Appellate Decisions

Weisman v. Blue Shield of California (1984) 163 Cal. App. 3d
Fields v. Blue Shield of California (1985) 163 Cal. App. 3d
Ochoa v. Superior Court (1985) 39 Cal. 3d 159
Sarchett v. Blue Shield of California (1987) 43 Cal. 3d 1
Heda v. Superior Court (1990) 2 Cal. App. 3d 525


Boalt Hall Law School, J.D. University of California at Berkeley, 1963-1966
Coro Foundation Internship Program in Public Affairs, San Francisco, 1961-1962
San Jose State University, B.S. Business & Industrial Management, 1960

Bar and Court Admissions

State Bar of California
American Bar Association
Bar Association of San Francisco, former member
United States District Court, Northern District of California
United States District Court, Eastern District of California
United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
United States Supreme Court

Life Beyond the Law

Mr. Sturgeon is an avid reader, especially in the areas of trial practice, litigation, philosophy, history, and historical novels. He has enjoyed sports in the past, especially when he has been involved with his family. These sports include swimming, baseball, basketball, tennis, and golf.

Critic's Corner

Litigation movie picks:

To Kill a Mockingbird
Judgment at Nuremberg
The Verdict

Litigation book picks:

David Ball, Theater Tips & Strategies for Jury Trials
Sonya Hamlin, What Makes Jurors Listen
James W. McElhaney, Trial Notebook