Our profession's highest calling is to do justice. We strive to meet that calling every day in our law firm's litigation and trial practice. That practice is national in scope, and we consider it a privilege to represent each of our clients in every matter in which we are engaged. Our values include dignity, responsibility, restraint and respect in and for the practice and rule of law. The firm's principals are seasoned, AV-rated "Preeminent" lawyers who, over the 20-plus years they have practiced law together, have maintained a successful record in a range of legal matters. We're proud of our legacy. LESS.
The firm has a robust and nationally-recognized practice in intellectual property law, with deep roots in the entertainment and technology industries. Over the years, the firm has served as counsel in a number of high-profile intellectual property and entertainment law cases. The firm's attorneys have represented many mainstays of the Bay Area music scene, including The Doobie Brothers, Dead Kennedys, Jerry Garcia, John Lee Hooker, Vince Guaraldi, Erik Jacobsen, Faith No More, Narada Michael Walden, Mark Kozelek and The Brian Jonestown Massacre, as well as those in the literary publishing (Maya Angelou), internet (AltaVista), new media, video game (Sony/Playstation), merchandising (Live Nation Merchandising), theatre (American Musical Theatre of San Jose) and film (Lucasfilm) industries. The firm is also closely involved with clients in managing their intellectual property. While this can mean bringing suit when a client's trademark, copyright or right of publicity or privacy has been violated, or when monies are owed a royalty participant, it also includes advising clients on a range of related legal issues such as digital rights management and licensing, online distribution of entertainment-related content, and copyright and trademark law.
The firm prosecutes employment disputes in state and federal courts and before government agencies touching virtually every aspect of the employer/employee relationship. These include wage and hour claims (including class actions and PAGA claims), race, age, gender, pregnancy and religious discrimination, harassment and retaliation claims, claims under the Americans With Disabilities Act and the Family Medical Leave Act, wrongful discharge, whistleblower, defamation, unfair competition and trade secret claims. The firm has achieved multiple seven-figure verdicts and settlements on behalf of executives (including CEOs) and other employees. The firm has had particular success in trade secret cases involving the employment relationship in both seeking and avoiding early stage motions for preliminary injunctive relief. (The outcome of such motions frequently resolves the case in favor of the prevailing party on such motions.) The firm also has expertise in representing entrepreneurs and executives in connection with negotiating compensation packages and in their relationships with their employers and investors.
The firm is committed to the pursuit of justice on a collective basis, and has had several important victories in the class action field. In Nov. 2011, a federal court judge in Miami granted final approval of a $410 million settlement on the claims made by the firm on behalf of customers of Bank of America over that bank's overdraft fee practices. Partners David Given and Nick Carlin were later honored as "Consumer Attorneys of the Year" finalists by the Consumer Attorneys of California for their work on the case. (The firm played a role in settling similar litigation against Bank of the West and M&T Bank for $18 million and $4 million, respectively.) In Feb. 2013, a state court judge in San Francisco gave final approval to a settlement the firm helped conclude with the City of San Francisco on behalf of emergency room patients unlawfully "balanced billed" by San Francisco General Hospital, resulting in a 100 cents on the dollar recovery for those patients. In Sept. 2015, the firm launched the first in a series of cases against The Honest Company alleging deceptive advertising in connection with that company's “all natural” products, and partner Nick Carlin, who was named interim co-lead counsel in a consolidated court proceeding in the matter, led the effort to beat back Honest’s legal attack on the class claims; a federal judge in New York granted final approval to a $7.35 million settlement of those claims. In April 2016, a federal judge gave final approval to the second of two settlements together totaling $23 million that the firm helped conclude as court-appointed lead counsel in two different class actions against Warner Music Group and Universal Music Group involving the accounting for income from digital downloads of recorded music. In March 2018, following success against multiple legal attacks as well as on the first class certification motion in the case, federal district court judge Jon S. Tigar granted final approval to a $5.3 million settlement of breach of privacy claims against several app defendants and Apple in connection with the unauthorized collection of users’ data from iDevices. And in April 2019, the firm filed the first class action on record under California’s Talent Agencies Act against the International Musicians League, doing business as the Lucky Devils Band, for acting as an unlicensed talent agent in booking musicians for live performances. The firm has also had success on a class basis in the employee wage and hour field, collecting over $15 million in back wages and penalties on employees' behalf.
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