“The Restoration Lawyer”

Ed Cross grew up in the Los Angeles suburbs, working in his father’s ­­construction company for a decade, ultimately reaching the position of Operations Manager.

At age 12, Ed was loading trucks, sweeping floors, and hauling trash in his father’s warehouse. At age 14, his dad moved him into the office to sort brochures, stuff envelopes, and file accounting records. At age 15, his dad had him start making collection calls, which was an eye-opening experience. Little did Ed know that 18 years later, he would be making collection calls as the attorney for esteemed restoration contractors, large and small.

Law Offices of Edward H. Cross has been in continuous, full-time operation as a construction law firm since the day Ed was sworn into the California bar in 1995. He began on the owner/occupant side, spending the first few years achieving big wins in construction defect, water damage, and mold-related illness claims against restoration contractors, builders, developers, homeowners associations, and landlords.

Those wins garnered significant media attention, particularly in regard to indoor air quality issues. In 1997, Ed accepted an invitation from the Carpet & FabriCare Institute (CFI) to “Come give a presentation about what we need to do so that you won’t sue us.” A restorer who attended the presentation approached Ed to draft a contract and, later, to represent the restorer in litigation. That led to referrals that blossomed into a broad array of work for hundreds of restoration contractors across the country, and in 2000, Ed dedicated his practice entirely to representing cleaners and restorers, and has never looked back.

Since 1997, Ed and his team have recovered many tens of millions of dollars for cleaning and restoration companies across the country, defending them in court,  drafting their contracts, and helping them develop practical risk management strategies. He has drafted many hundreds of customized contracts for insurance repairs, emergency mitigation, reconstruction, and contents restoration for many of the biggest names in the disaster recovery industry. Hundreds of companies sign many millions of dollars of contracts every week using his contracts, for everything from small carpet cleaning projects, to coronavirus disinfection, to major fire repairs. Ed received the Joe Laurino Memorial Award for Continuous and Unselfish Support of the Carpet & FabriCare Institute. Restorers ultimately nicknamed him “The Restoration Lawyer.”

Early on, Ed was fascinated by the technical side of restoration and indoor air quality, and was educated extensively in both, earning a certification as a Water Restoration Technician (WRT) from the Institute of Cleaning & Inspection Certification (IICRC), and a certification in Indoor Air Quality Consulting from the Association of Energy Engineers (AEE). That training allowed him to contribute significant substantive content to the IICRC Standards for Professional Water Damage Restoration (S500) and Mold Remediation (S520), as well as its COVID-19 Report for Restoration Contractors, jointly published with the Restoration Industry Association and the American Industrial Hygiene Association.

Ed has authored many dozens of legal articles and treatises dealing with remediation and restoration, including Litigation a la Mold, which was a cover story of the Los Angeles Lawyer Magazine, above. He has been a columnist and feature writer for Restoration & Remediation Magazine, Cleaning & Restoration Magazine, CleanFax, Bio Recovery Today, The Synergist (published by the American Industrial Hygiene Association), and others. His first publication in the field was an extensive article in the frequently cited Proceedings from the Third International Conference on Bioaerosols, Fungi and Mycotoxins.

Ed is a sought-after public speaker, having given hundreds of invited presentations for restoration industry organizations across the U.S. on collections, insurance claims settlements, legal and risk management issues affecting the cleaning and restoration industries.

In 2019, Ed was appointed to launch the Restoration Industry Association’s highly-publicized Advocacy & Government Affairs Committee (AGA), which seeks to level the playing field for restorers, particularly in property insurance claims settlements, among other things. He was Chairman of the Committee in its first year, and was then retained as the Association’s Restoration Advocate and launched a ground-breaking campaign for the positions taken by the Association. His efforts were the catalysts for many significant wins and breakthroughs for restorers with respect to standardized pricing, third party consultants, and third party administrators. His talk show, Face The Advocate debuted in 2020, to critical acclaim.

Ed has been a member of the American Bio Recovery Association (ABRA), the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA), the Carpet and FabriCare Institute (CFI), the Indoor Air Quality Association (IAQA), the American Indoor Air Quality Council (AmIAQ). He served as a Trustee of the Desert Bar Association and is the Chairman of its Lawyer Hall of Fame Awards Committee. He was named as one of the Palm Springs area’s “top lawyers” every year since 2011, and has the highest ranking (“Superb”) on Avvo.com.

Ed received a Bachelor’s Degree in Speech Communications with an emphasis in Public Speaking from California State University at Northridge, where he earned a place on the Dean’s Honor Roll. He earned his Juris Doctor Degree from Western State University in Fullerton, California, where he received Director’s Scholarships. He successfully completed the school’s accelerated, 2-1/2 year Juris Doctorate program, graduating in the top 25% of his class. 

Before law school, “Eddie” Cross was the drummer for the million-selling hard rock group, Autograph.  He played drums and sang on the band’s Missing Pieces album and its 1989 American tour. He subsequently performed publicly with many prominent rock musicians, including members of Poison, Quiet Riot, Ratt, and Cinderella, and he sang on Steve Plunkett’s solo album, My Attitude.

In his leisure time, he enjoys cinematography, scuba diving, travelling Asia with his sweetheart Lisa, and playing with his granddaughter, Eastan.