Khari J. Tillery
Partner

ktillery@keker.com
Tel. (415) 773-6621

Education

UC Berkeley School of Law, J.D., 2001

UC Berkeley, B.A., 1998

Prior Experience

Thurgood Marshall Fellow, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights

Clerkships

Hon. Martin J. Jenkins
U.S. District Court, Northern District of California

Hon. Theodore A. McKee
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit

Bar Admissions

California

Khari J. Tillery

“It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.” – Albert Einstein

I am a problem solver who happens to be a lawyer. 

Whether representing companies or individuals, in civil or criminal matters, I begin every relationship by asking the same three questions: (1) what are the issues my client is facing (legal and otherwise); (2) what are my client’s primary concerns and strategic goals; (3) how can I help my client achieve their desired resolution as efficiently as possible? In some cases, resolution can only be achieved through aggressive litigation tactics, while other cases require a more subtle touch – and, of course, most cases require a little of both. Having tried seven cases in various forums, four as lead counsel, I know how to help my clients avoid litigation, set their cases up for a successful pretrial resolution, or win at trial.

During my 15 years of practice, I have advised on, litigated, and tried all manner of commercial disputes, while specializing in contract disputes, trade secret misappropriation, data privacy, unfair competition, and legal malpractice. I have trial experience in both federal and state court (including five jury trials), as well as binding arbitration.

I maintain a robust pro bono practice, primarily representing wrongfully convicted prisoners in habeas corpus proceedings, individuals whose civil rights have been violated, and criminal defendants. I am also on the Board of Directors of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area.

But what I enjoy most about my practice is guiding my clients through difficult situations and helping them obtain the best possible result. I look at every case with fresh eyes, while also drawing upon my deep reservoir of experience. Because that’s what problem solvers do.

Cases of Note

Former Client v. Law Firm: We won a complete defense verdict for our multinational law firm client, and three individual law firm partners, in a malpractice claim arising out of patent litigation in the ITC and Delaware. The plaintiffs had alleged more than a dozen individual acts of malpractice and sought $60+ million in damages. After a hard-fought two-week arbitration before a retired federal judge in New York, the arbitrator issued an award in our clients’ favor.

American Medical Response Inc. et al. v. Paramedics Plus, et al.: We defended Paramedics Plus from American Medical Response’s (AMR) claims of anticompetitive unfair business practices. After losing the competitive bidding process for Alameda County’s emergency medical services transportation contract to its much smaller rival Paramedics Plus, AMR accused our client of violating California's predatory pricing law, Business & Professions Code Section 17043, in its bid to win the 911 ambulance contract. Despite a minimal amount of precedent, we were able to preserve the statute’s intent, which is to safeguard healthy competition by protecting smaller companies from larger rivals. We received a unanimous 12-0 jury verdict in favor of our client.

Plaintiffs v. Real Estate Investors: We defended certain real estate investors against alter ego claims, in both state and federal court. These alter ego claims were brought in an effort to hold our clients personally liable for a $7.5 million judgment against their company and to pierce the corporate veil protecting our client's real estate investment firm. Following a multi-week bench trial, the court entered judgment for our clients and awarded them attorneys' fees.

McGah v. Davis: We represented limited partnership owners of the Oakland Raiders in a breach of fiduciary duty action against the team's general partner, Al Davis. The suit sought to confirm our client's partnership rights and prevent the diminishment of its partnership share. The case was settled before trial on favorable terms for our client.

Law Firm v. Former Client: We helped an Am Law 100 law firm obtain payment for legal services in connection with a successful infringement lawsuit against a rival company. After obtaining a multi-million dollar writ of attachment, the case was settled following arbitration.

Hui v. C-Cube Microsystems, Inc.: We represented a semiconductor design company in an employee class action alleging violations of Section 17200 surrounding the valuation of employee stock options. After dissecting an extremely complicated merger and spin-off transaction, we demonstrated the weaknesses of the plaintiff's case. We obtained a settlement in mediation for a small fraction of the claimed damages.

United States Department of Justice v. LCD Panel Company: We represented a Taiwanese manufacturer of liquid crystal display screens in a massive price-fixing investigation conducted by the U.S. Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division.

Commercial Real Estate Company v. Real Estate Development Company: We represented a commercial real estate company in a claim for a commission and defended the company against a cross-complaint. The court sustained the demurrers to the cross-complaint without leave to amend and granted summary judgment on the affirmative claims. After the plaintiff rejected an offer for both sides to walk away, the appeals court affirmed both rulings.

Digital Media Company v. Internet Video and Computer Hardware Company: We served as lead counsel for a leader in digital media streaming solutions. Our client asserted trade secret misappropriation and related patent claims concerning video place-shifting technologies. The matter was successfully resolved on confidential terms.

Presentations

  • "Federal Court Boot Camp," Pincus Professional Education, May 2015
  • "Walk the Walk - Diversity Within the Legal Profession," California Minority Counsel Program (CMCP), Jan 2015

Awards and Honors

  • Board of Directors, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area
  • Editor-in-chief, African-American Law and Policy Report
  • President, Law Students of African Descent, UC Berkeley School of Law
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