Chris Kearney uses proactive litigation strategies to protect large, publicly traded companies, and privately held organizations in complex trade secrets disputes, as well as accountants and lawyers in high-stakes professional liability matters. Mr. Kearney has represented one of the largest U.S. based accounting firms in more than two dozen actions involving breach of contract, professional negligence and fraud claims throughout the Western United States. His experience at a Big Four accounting firm has given him a sharp understanding of financial and damage issues as they affect legal clients. He has also represented individuals and firms in matters before the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Cases of Note
Plaintiff v. Law Firm: We successfully defended at trial an Am Law 50 law firm and one of its former partners against a $100 million claim. The plaintiff alleged malpractice and breach of fiduciary duty related to estate planning. After an eight-week trial in California state court, we won a complete victory.
Silvaco Data Systems v. Toppan Photomasks, Inc.: We represented Toppan Photomasks Inc., a manufacturer within the semiconductor industry, against a $500 million trade secret misappropriation claim. After our aggressive attack on the plaintiff’s case, we achieved a “walk away” dismissal of the trade secret claim prior to trial.
Venture Capitalist v. Bank: We represented a venture capitalist who sought damages against a large bank for failing to pay out as promised after the sale of a business. Following mediation, we obtained a cash and stock settlement of more than $10 million, including difficult-to-value stock interests in two businesses.
Plaintiffs v. Microimaging Company: Our lawyers represented a global provider of microimaging solutions in a breach of agreement suit brought by six former employees. After we defeated the plaintiffs’ motions seeking injunctive relief, the case proceeded to arbitration in Texas, where the matter was settled on favorable terms to our clients.
Awards and Honors
- Listed in Best Lawyers in America, Commercial Litigation, 2010 - present
- William Minor Lile Moot Court champion, University of Virginia
- Order of the Coif, University of Virginia
- Fellow, American Bar Foundation, 2013-present
- President, Bar Association of San Francisco, 2012-2013
- Board member, Bar Association of San Francisco, 2007-2013