Patrick Mendes - Partner

A San Diego native, Pat Mendes is a Founding Partner of Tyson & Mendes and works from the firm’s San Diego headquarters.

Over the course of his career, Mr. Mendes has developed a formidable track record in defending insurance companies and businesses, taking on high profile, high stakes litigation involving insurers, design professionals, contractors, homeowners associations, and real property disputes.  His specific practice areas include construction litigation, personal injury, insurance coverage and professional liability.

An active member of the legal community, he is affiliated with a number of professional organizations, including the San Diego County Bar Association, the Council on Litigation Management (CLM), the San Diego Defense Lawyers and California Minority Counsel Program (CMCP).  He presents regularly to professional groups on insurance and casualty law as well as other current legal issues.

Previously a partner with Gordon & Rees – where he served as director of the construction and insurance groups – Mr. Mendes joined forces with Bob Tyson in 2002 to form Tyson & Mendes.  In 1992, he graduated cum laude from the University of California, San Diego with a bachelor’s degree in History, and went on to earn his J.D., magna cum laude, from the University of San Diego School of Law in 1995.  He is licensed to practice law in California.

Mr. Mendes enjoys running, playing golf and spending time with his wife, Lori, and three children, Matthew, Grace, and Kayla.

Life is messy.  When things get uncomfortable or awkward you sometimes just need to embrace the awkward before you can reach a meaningful resolution.

To learn about joining the Tyson & Mendes team, please visit our Careers page.


Recent Posts

Tyson Sees Need for 100 Additional Attorneys

San Diego Business Journal – July 16, 2019

Tyson & Mendes LLP is experiencing quite a growth spurt, practically doubling its revenue in 2018 to $40.6 million. Leaders at the La Jolla-based law firm say they would like to add 100 attorneys across all of its locations in the next 12 months.


5 Keys for Modern Law Firm Management

The Recorder by – August 27, 2018

Over the years, my partner Bob Tyson and I have discovered several key management techniques that have helped us build a successful, growth-sustaining law firm in the modern, millennial-driven age.


What I Learned In My 1st Year: Be A Sponge

Law360 – October 25, 2017

Here, Patrick Mendes of Tyson & Mendes LLP recalls how, as a new and inexperienced lawyer, he absorbed ideas and advice from partners and fellow associates alike, and how many of the lessons he learned from his colleagues back then have proven to be of enduring value.


Pat Mendes to Present at CLM & Business Insurance’s 2017 Construction Conference

A high exposure construction claim provides the backdrop for this discussion of the complex dynamics between primary and excess insurers. Seasoned industry professionals will share untold stories and lessons learned about the inherent conflict between primary and excess liability insurers. Specific areas of discussion will include choice of counsel, allocation of costs, responding to settlement demands, retained counsel’s reporting responsibility, duties among insurers and insured, coordination of trial tactics, and outside the box approaches to addressing the diverging interests between carriers and clients. The session also will highlight the insured’s role in the process and how effective communication techniques can prevent many common pitfalls.


Tyson & Mendes Buys La Jolla Office Building for $4,750,000

SAN DIEGO, CA – Law firm Tyson & Mendes announced the expansion of their San Diego offices with the acquisition of the building at 5786 La Jolla Blvd, La Jolla, CA 92037. The buyers were San Diego attorneys Bob Tyson and Pat Mendes who formed the Golden Turtles LLC for the purchase. The buyers were represented by broker Chris Musgjerd with Savills Studley. The seller of the 7,900 sqft, two story building with ocean views was Mesh Properties LLC. In 2003, the building was converted to office space from its former use as Milligan’s Restaurant. Former tenants included the Ted Waitt Foundation and Avalon Capital Group Inc.

Court of Appeal Rejects Primary Carrier’s “Other Insurance” Position

In the recent case, Certain Underwriters at Lloyds, London v. Arch Specialty Insurance (April 11, 2016, 2016 WL 1436362) the Court of Appeal of California for the Third Appellate District

Equities Favor Subrogating Insurer Over a Subcontractor For Alleged Defective Work

In Valley Crest Landscape v. Mission Pools, (2015) 238 Cal.App.4th 468, a California Court of Appeal held that equities favor an insurer seeking equitable subrogation over a subcontractor that agreed to defend and indemnify claims arising out of its performance of work under the subcontract agreement.

Be Careful Who You Indemnify

In the indemnity hierarchy, an owner typically requires its general contractor to indemnify the owner from and against “any and all claims arising out of, related to, arising out of, etc.” the general contractor’s scope of work. Similarly, the general contractor will require indemnification from its subcontractors. This dynamic continues with each party pointing to the next down a proverbial “indemnity ladder.” In this typical scenario, it is good to be the “owner,” perched high atop the indemnity hierarchy.

Interpreting “Ongoing Operations” In An Additional Insured Endorsement

In St. Paul Fire and Marine Insurance Company v. ACE American Insurance, the court’s interpretation of “ongoing operations” included a temporal element. However, this temporal element places emphasis on when the damage occurred, as opposed to when the damage was discovered.

Construction Defect: Defining “Property Damage”

A recent case addresses a split of decisions in California as to whether incorporation of a defective product into a construction project may itself constitute “property damage” under a CGL policy.

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