Appellate

Representative clients

Lucasfilm   •   Electronic Arts Inc.  •   Google Inc.  •   Major League Baseball Players Association  •   Netflix

On appeal, as in trial, our attorneys display tactical sophistication and a penchant for getting to the point. At Keker, Van Nest & Peters, our briefs have a tone that is scholarly and credible, yet also pragmatic, incisive and never boring.

To be effective, appellate lawyers must:

  • Work fruitfully and cooperatively with trial counsel
  • Craft jury instructions and post-trial motions that preserve the issues for possible appeal
  • Reframe the issues to maximum advantage
  • Tell a compelling story within the constraints of the applicable standard of review
  • Bolster doctrinal arguments with arguments about public policy and legislative intent
  • Challenge a ruling, not the judge who issued it
  • Know when to defend the trial court’s reasoning and when to suggest a simpler route to the same result
  • Write a brief that blends emotion and reason without sounding like a jury argument
  • Write clean, spare prose that says just enough

Our lawyers - most of whom have clerked for federal judges - have honed these skills and deployed them successfully in appeals and writ proceedings spanning the entire field of complex litigation.

 

On appeal, as in trial, our attorneys display tactical sophistication and a penchant for getting to the point. At Keker, Van Nest & Peters, our briefs have a tone that is scholarly and credible, yet also pragmatic, incisive and never boring.

To be effective, appellate lawyers must:

  • Work fruitfully and cooperatively with trial counsel
  • Craft jury instructions and post-trial motions that preserve the issues for possible appeal
  • Reframe the issues to maximum advantage
  • Tell a compelling story within the constraints of the applicable standard of review
  • Bolster doctrinal arguments with arguments about public policy and legislative intent
  • Challenge a ruling, not the judge who issued it
  • Know when to defend the trial court’s reasoning and when to suggest a simpler route to the same result
  • Write a brief that blends emotion and reason without sounding like a jury argument
  • Write clean, spare prose that says just enough

Our lawyers - most of whom have clerked for federal judges - have honed these skills and deployed them successfully in appeals and writ proceedings spanning the entire field of complex litigation.

 

Daily Journal Weekly Appellate Report Podcast: Heller Ehrman v. Davis Wright Tremaine

March 09, 2018

A dissolved law firm has no property interest in the profits generated by its former shareholders’ work on hourly fee matters pending at the time of the firm’s dissolution. Read more

Bankrupt Law Firm Clawbacks Take Hit in California

March 06, 2018

The California Supreme Court ruled this week that failed law firms are not entitled to fees earned on legal matters that are in progress – but not completed – at the time the firm closes its doors. Read more

California Supreme Court Decides that Dissolved Law Firms are Not Entitled to Partners’ Future Earnings

March 05, 2018

Representing Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, Keker Van Nest & Peters secured a win before the California Supreme Court in a case that tested the reach of law firm dissolution agreements Read more

Law360 California Powerhouse: Keker Van Nest & Peters

October 06, 2017

Longtime California trial staple Keker Van Nest & Peters LLP found success for a wide range of clients this year, winning a nationwide injunction against a presidential executive order, defending Arista Networks in a groundbreaking copyright suit and resolving a feud between two prominent San Francisco philanthropists. Read more

The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit upholds major lower-court victory for Netflix.

11/08/2016

TiVo’s “TV Guide” patents are DOA at appeals court. Read more

California Lawyer Names Steve Hirsch One of the Attorneys of the Year

03/02/2015

Steve Hirsch earned the prestigious CLAY award by winning a federal court judgment in the Heller Ehrman bankruptcy that makes it easier for clients to hire lawyers and for lawyers to switch firms. Read more

Keker & Van Nest Named Top Litigation Boutique

10/15/2014

One name mentioned by virtually everyone the Daily Journal spoke to was Keker & Van Nest. Lawyers at some of the best firms in California said they model themselves after the litigation powerhouse. Read more

Steve Hirsch Commissioned for New Study on Scalia-Posner Feud

05/08/2014

Mr. Hirsch determined eight of 12 criticisms by Posner were “unwarranted,” but the remaining four had varying degrees of merit. Read more

"The Reply Brief: Making It Count"

04/30/2014

Steve Hirsch will discuss how the appellant’s reply brief can be the most difficult but most effective argument you make. Read more

Steve Hirsch Receives BASF Award of Merit

11/25/2013

The Bar Association of San Francisco honored Steve Hirsch for his outstanding work as co-chair of BASF's Amicus Curiae Committee. Read more

Argument Talk: Tips for Litigators on Raising, Answering and Dropping Points

01/01/2013

Steve Hirsch discusses how to frame a question so as to negate his opponent's arguments. Read more

At the Podium: Send Button Doesn't Carry Guarantee

11/09/2012

Steve Hirsch argued the online version of an age-old legal question — how to prove that a written communication was actually received and read by its intended target — at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Read more

23 Keker & Van Nest Attorneys Named "Best Lawyers"

08/28/2012

The firm receives top rankings for bet-the-company, intellectual property, criminal defense, securities, commercial, legal malpractice, and appellate litigation. Read more

The Appellate Process in California

03/16/2012

During this day-long seminar, Steven HIrsch and other notable faculty will examine the California appellate process by following a hypothetical case from filing of the complaint to review by the Court of Appeal, and petitioning the California Supreme Court for review. Read more

17 Partners Selected for 2012 Best Lawyers in America

09/01/2011

Keker & Van Nest partners were recognized in more than ten categories, including bet-the-company litigation, criminal defense, and intellectual property litigation. Read more

Keker & Van Nest Partner Stuart Gasner Wins Appeal on Behalf of Former ESSI Exec

07/20/2011

“The decision marks a fitting end to this chapter of SEC enforcement — an enforcement program that went too far in my opinion,” Stuart Gasner told Law360. Read more

Steve Hirsch Comments on Government Plan to Auction Unabomber Items

05/12/2011

Later this month, U.S. Marshals will auction off "Unabomber" Ted Kaczynski's personal effects online. Keker & Van Nest partner Steve Hirsch, who represented four victims in court proceedings, comments on what the auction will mean for Kaczynski's victims. Read more

U.S. Supreme Court Grants Review in Landmark Fair Use Case

03/07/2011

Steven Hirsch and R. James Slaughter provide pro bono assistance to Conductors Guild. Read more

Steve Hirsch was named one of the 2015 Attorneys of the Year for his appellate work on behalf of Davis Wright Tremaine and Foley & Lardner in the Heller Ehrman bankruptcy matter.

Best Lawyers in America ranks Keker, Van Nest & Peters as a Tier 1 firm nationally for Appellate Law.

Benchmark Litigation recognized Keker, Van Nest & Peters as a leading Appellate Firm in the Ninth Circuit.

The Recorder named Elliot Peters a 2010 Attorney of the Year for successfully representing the Major League Baseball Players Association before the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.