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MARICELA PICAZO obtained her Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from the University of California, Berkeley. She received her Juris Doctor from Santa Clara University, School of Law in 2003 and was admitted to the California State Bar later that year. During her time at Santa Clara University, Ms. Picazo was a member of the Student Admissions committee where she reviewed and analyzed applications for Law School candidates.


Ms. Picazo began her legal career as a Legal Intern for the San Francisco Office of the District Attorney where she conducted legal research and writing for motion hearings and trials in addition to assisting with overall case preparation. She later on became a Certified Legal Intern for District Attorney’s Office in the Juvenile Division specializing in legal research, drafting legal memoranda of points and authorities and trial briefs, and case preparation. As a Certified Legal Intern she also assisted with the in motion calendar, which included the presentation of oral arguments.

While waiting for bar results, Ms. Picazo worked as a Law Clerk at a firm in San Francisco where she gained experience in discovery review and claim analysis. She also assisted attorneys with case research, preparation for depositions, hearings and trial and the negotiation of lien settlements.

Ms. Picazo has exclusively practiced Workers’ Compensation Law since she passed the California Bar in 2003. For the first 11 years of her career, Ms. Picazo worked in-house for a large insurance company where she handled complex files for their national accounts. She is well versed in all phases of litigation, appearing at court proceedings and negotiating settlement agreements.

Ms. Picazo has worked for Samuelsen, Gonzalez, Valenzuela and Brown since 2015, where she has continued to aggressively handle files, always with an eye toward early resolution. Absent early resolution she creates plans of action to move the file quickly through the process of discovery, negotiations and trial if necessary.

Ms. Picazo is fluent in Spanish.

Samuelsen, Gonzalez, Valenzuela and Brown is pleased to have Ms. Picazo as an Attorney in our San Francisco Office.



AARUNI THAKUR received his Bachelor of Arts in Art History with a minor in Public Policy from the University of California, Los Angeles. He received his Juris Doctor in 2006 from the University of San Diego School of Law. While in law school, Aaruni spent a semester in Sacramento working on legislation in the California State Senate.


Mr. Thakur began his career working as a Staff Attorney for the Los Angeles Dependency Lawyers, Inc. fulfilling a desire to serve the public interest. Mr. Thakur began practicing Workers’ Compensation Law exclusively in 2010. Since 2010 Mr. Thakur has defended not only private employers but also public entities.

In his spare time, Mr. Thakur enjoys spending time with his wife Pamela and amazing sons. In 2018, Mr. Thakur was elected to the Fullerton School District as a Trustee.

Mr. Thakur is an associate in the firm’s Newport Beach office.

February 2015