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Litigation

As an established law firm with a diversity of clients and practice areas, we have the breadth of industry knowledge and legal experience to handle any case and take on any opponent. We are proud to have been selected by Corporate Counsel in 2009 as a "Go To" Firm in the area of litigation in a survey of national clients. In the past two years, we have been selected as “preferred outside counsel” by two of the largest corporations in the country through formal programs to narrow large numbers of outside firms to a small core. We have long acted as national product liability litigation counsel for one of the largest component parts manufacturers in the country. At the same time, we litigate as zealously and effectively for smaller, family-owned private companies and individuals.
 
Chair:  Gavin W. Skok
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Our Skills and Experience

Our experience and successes cut across many substantive areas of business disputes, including:

Antitrust

We handle cases involving price-fixing and other illegal pricing practices that present serious risks to companies and their executives, including potential criminal sanctions and treble damages, as detailed in the practice group description. More...

Bankruptcy and Creditors' Rights

Our bankruptcy attorneys cover the field of creditor and debtor law, bankruptcies, receiverships, foreclosures, workouts, collections and loan documentation, assisting clients throughout the United States, as more fully described in the practice group description. More...

Breach of Contract and Warranty

We represent clients involved in disputes over contracts for the sale of goods, services, property, businesses, and anything that can be sold, transferred or secured. For example, we:

  • Obtained a $75 million judgment for breach of warranties in the sale of defective aluminum after a three week trial in federal court
  • Successfully defended against a $13 million claim arising from the sale of industrial generators
  • Enforced the terms of sale of a major packaging business

Class Actions

Whether representing plaintiff classes or defendant, we offer a depth of staffing, resources and organizational skills and tools to vigorously prosecute and defend large-scale litigation. We have litigated against some of the largest and most sophisticated law firms in the country, with highly successful results. For example, we:

  • Represented a large national insurance company in defense of multiple class actions alleging the unauthorized practice of law and unfair and deceptive practices
  • Successfully defeated class certification for a major airline in federal court litigation
  • Defended a dozen municipal and rural utilities in one of the largest class action securities fraud cases ever. We settled all claims against our clients, almost exclusively through payments by insurance companies, and then successfully defended their attempts to obtain repayment, alleging fraud and misrepresentation
  • Represented a major Northwest bank, and most of its officers and directors, in class actions in Washington and Montana alleging state securities fraud

Construction and Real Estate

We have represented real estate owners, commercial tenants, developers, contractors and design professionals, in disputes ranging from the purchase, sale and lease of large commercial properties, to judicial and non-judicial foreclosures, disputes between real estate partners, and construction litigation, including architects and engineers, in a wide variety of real estate and large scale construction litigation. More...

Environmental and Natural Resources

We advise and litigate on behalf of a wide range of clients including manufacturers, utilities, private landowners and environmental groups, on matters ranging from pollution control, environmental remediation, natural resource law, facility siting, corporate transactions, land use and hazardous waste to name a few. More...

Insurance Coverage and Risk Management

We assist clients in a wide range of insurance coverage claims, including claims and suits for losses related to environmental remediation, software and other technology failures, director and officer liability and product liability, property loss, business interruptions and insurer’s bad faith. More...

Intellectual Property/Trade Secrets

Working in conjunction with our intellectual property business attorneys, we plan for the protection of intellectual property rights, defend against alleged infringement claims and prosecute those who violate claims of our client’s intellectual property rights. We have defended and prosecuted trademark infringement lawsuits, copyright infringement lawsuits involving advertising media, consumer and commercial products, software and other content, trade secret misappropriations and actions related to e-commerce and the Internet. More...

Labor and Employment

We are experienced defending our business clients in administrative proceedings, jury and non-jury trials of class and individual claims and appellate matters in federal and state courts. More...

Product Liability

Our national Product Liability group represents domestic and transnational companies in complex, nationwide litigation involving bodily injury, property damage and economic loss allegedly caused by defective products or exposure to toxic substances. We represent manufacturers, sellers and distributors of products in litigation alleging product liability, negligence, failure to warn, manufacturing defects and other theories of liability. More...

Securities

Our litigators represent issuers, investors, broker-dealers, account executives, financial institutions, directors, officers, bond insurers, trustees and investment advisors in a wide range of securities matters, including large class action suits. We represent clients in state and federal court and in various arbitral forums, including the National Association of Securities Dealers, the NYSE and the American Arbitration Association. Examples of our securities-related work include:

  • Defended a national bank against state securities claims that the bank acted improperly as the Indenture Trustee of a $20 million bond offering in Island County, arising out of the sale of bonds by a local sewer district
  • Represented a national bond insurance company in prosecuting federal and state securities and common law claims, arising out of the default of more than $30 million of municipal revenue bonds issued to construct an expanded and renovated parking garage in downtown Spokane
  • Defended a Seattle law firm against securities and RICO allegations arising out of tax advice and litigation for family-owned business trusts, which held the assets of the inventor of “Kwik Loks,” the plastic clips found on bread wrappers and other products
  • Represented a major Dutch company and its U.S. subsidiary in a securities class action arising from the acquisition of a publicly-traded U.S. company. We obtained a complete voluntary dismissal of the case before responding to the complaint or discovery demands
  • Defended 30 public utilities and related individuals (directors, commissioners, attorneys and others) in multiple class action securities fraud cases arising from the multi-billion dollar default on municipal bonds sold to construct nuclear power plants in the Pacific Northwest by the Washington Public Power Supply System. We were able to settle the suits favorably with payments from our clients' numerous insurance companies

Unique Litigation: Constitutional, Tribal and Other

The depth and breadth of our litigation experience allows us to handle virtually any civil litigation matter, including cases that do not fall into the usual categories. Some examples of unusual cases we have recently handled include:

  • Defended the largest investor-owned utility in Idaho against claims by Native American Indian Tribe, alleging damages for the loss of anadromous fish runs because of the company's hydroelectric power projects from the 1950s to present
  • Represented an investment company in recovering a multi-million dollar settlement against an Indian tribe resulting from a casino/resort project on the defendant’s reservation
  • Represented a national magazine publishing company in defense of claims by the state of Washington alleging violations of the Washington Prizes and Promotions Act and the Washington Consumer Protection Act, based on the company’s magazine sweepstakes promotion
  • Litigation of an international company’s entitlement to investment tax credit under the transitional rules to the repeal of the Investment Tax Credit
  • Obtained a writ of replevin and preliminary injunction forcing a police department to return illegally-seized computers and cease further searches of a public library
  • Defended a county against claims that an ordinance limiting the importation of infectious medical waste violates the United States Constitution. Case handled through the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Case resolved by United States Supreme Court ruling in which county appeared as amicus curiae
  • Defended city against claim for wrongful termination of hearing examiners. Case dismissed on summary judgment and affirmed by the Court of Appeals