A nationally recognized business trial lawyer, Jessica has significant ﬁrst-chair experience in high-stakes matters. This includes successfully trying three cases over $100 million and two cases over half a billion dollars. Jessica’s ability to handle trials across disciplines at a moment’s notice makes her a highly sought-after litigation lawyer. Jessica also handles mediations and pre-suit attempts to resolve cases without litigation.
Jessica’s substantial experience includes class action, product liability and employment litigation, including one of the largest product liability cases tried to a jury verdict as well as serving as lead trial counsel in one of the largest wage and hour class actions ever to be tried to verdict. She also has extensive IP litigation experience in complex cases involving patent, copyright infringement and trademark matters, from inception of the case through trial.
Along with other accolades, Jessica has been named twice as California Lawyer’s Attorney of the Year. Benchmark Litigation named Jessica in their Top 250 Women in Litigation, and the Daily Journal listed her in their list of California’s Top 100 Lawyers and in their Top Women Litigators in California. She has also been designated as a California Trailblazer by The Recorder and as a Litigation Trailblazer by the National Law Journal.
Jessica has taught mediation as an adjunct professor at the University of San Francisco School of Law and served as an instructor at the National Institute of Trial Advocacy. She currently serves as a mediator in the San Francisco Superior Court Early Settlement Program.
Lead trial counsel in a California state court action on behalf of a client whose product plaintiff claimed caused his Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Plaintiff asked the jury to award $100 million in compensatory damages and $500 million in punitive damages. After deliberating for three hours, the jury returned a complete defense verdict.
Lead trial counsel in false advertising class action where plaintiﬀ and the class sought more than $140 million. After two-week trial, the jury awarded $1.4 million and court entered judgment in the amount of $12 million, agreeing with the defense that damages sought by plaintiﬀ and the class was “so severe and oppressive as to be wholly disproportioned to the oﬀense and obviously unreasonable.”
Lead trial counsel in a nine-week jury trial where plaintiﬀ sought $25 million plus punitive damages against CEO individually and several companies for alleged breach of ﬁduciary duty and fraud. After deliberating for four days, the jury returned a complete defense verdict.
Represented the State of New Hampshire in a statewide product liability/toxic tort case against major oil companies. After securing $130 million in settlements, served as lead attorney in a three-month trial that resulted in a unanimous jury verdict, awarding $816 million to the state, after just 90 minutes of deliberation.
Lead trial counsel in one of the largest wage and hour class action lawsuits ever tried in California and obtained a $172 million jury verdict on behalf of more than 116,000 class members after a four-month trial. The National Law Journal ranked the verdict as one of the largest in 2005 and the largest in an employment law case. After a two-week bench trial, Jessica also obtained a permanent injunction that required the defendant to implement various policies to comply with California employment law.
Lead trial counsel for one of the world’s largest semiconductor chipmakers and several other defendants in a four-week jury trial in federal court. The plaintiﬀ alleged fraud, unjust enrichment, breach of contract, and related patent claims, and sought more than $450 million, exclusive of punitive damages. After the jury deadlocked on liability, the court dismissed all state-law claims against the defendants.
Lead trial counsel for a leading media company in a defamation case. After a two-week trial, the plaintiﬀ asked for $7 million in compensatory damages, and punitive damages potentially as high as $70 million. Following four hours of deliberation, the jury returned a verdict of $72,025 in compensatory damages and no liability for punitive damages.
Lead trial counsel in the ﬁrst major copyright infringement trial involving claimed fair use of viral YouTube videos; after closing arguments, obtained a favorable settlement on behalf of the client.
Represented food and beverage corporation in false advertising class action brought by class of California consumers who alleged client’s product falsely and misleadingly claimed a number of health beneﬁts. After obtaining a dismissal with prejudice in the District court, successfully argued in the Ninth Circuit, which upheld the dismissal in a unanimous published decision that has implications for class actions in California, as well as cases brought under California’s consumer protection statutes.
Lead trial counsel in a one-week jury trial where plaintiﬀ alleged his laryngeal cancer was caused by client’s product and that its associated health risks were concealed from him. He sought $12.5 million in compensatory damages and between $21 million and $147 million in punitive damages. The jury found no liability on the fraud claims, and awarded $360,000 in compensatory damages and $150,000 in punitive damages.
Lead trial counsel for a company whose employee caused an accident during the course and scope of employment, resulting in a severe spinal cord injury to plaintiﬀ. Liability was not contested at trial. After deliberating for two hours, the jury returned a favorable verdict that was millions below what plaintiﬀ’s counsel sought, and below the amount oﬀered to settle the case.
Lead trial counsel on behalf of a company whose product was alleged to have caused defendant’s lung cancer. Plaintiﬀs asked for a multimillion dollar award; the unanimous jury verdict attributed 90% fault to decedent and awarded his widow and daughter $225,000.
Trial counsel where plaintiﬀs claimed defendant concealed the dangers of smoking, which led to nicotine addiction and smoking-related bladder cancer. Plaintiﬀs sought $11 million; a unanimous jury returned a complete defense verdict.
Served on a trial team that obtained a unanimous defense verdict in a multimillion-dollar product liability case in California state court, involving an anti-epileptic drug alleged to have caused plaintiﬀ’s birth defects.
Served on a trial team that obtained a unanimous defense verdict after a six-week jury trial in the ﬁrst bellwether case to proceed to trial in California, involving a prescription drug alleged to cause atypical femur fractures.
Successful Disposition Before Trial
Obtained dismissal with prejudice of copyright and tortious interference lawsuit in which plaintiﬀ sought over $750 million in damages and rights to the world’s most popular web server software from client, a leading multi-cloud security and application management company.
Obtained dismissal with prejudice of a nationwide putative data privacy class action and enforcement of class action waiver and arbitration provision in the Northern District of California.
Obtained dismissal with prejudice of product liability/negligence action on behalf of social media company whose popular app was alleged to have contributed to a minor’s death.
Obtained dismissal with prejudice of a copyright infringement case on behalf of a major TV network that was alleged to have broadcasted a movie that infringed plaintiﬀ’s copyrighted ﬁlm.
Obtained summary judgment for a broadcast TV network that was alleged to have ﬁred an employee because of her claimed terminal illness.
Obtained a favorable pre-litigation settlement for a company whose former employee claimed she was retaliated against and wrongfully terminated for making a whistleblower complaint to a federal regulatory agency.
Reached a favorable early settlement on behalf of an employer in an age-discrimination/inaccurate pay stub action following the depositions of plaintiﬀ and co-workers.
Obtained a favorable pre-litigation settlement on behalf of a CEO and private bank in an employment action alleging wrongful termination/retaliation and fraud.
Obtained favorable settlement of nationwide class action on behalf of leading multinational technology company whose laptop was allegedly defectively designed.
Roundup Plaintiffs Win Streak Ends: California Jury Sides With Monsanto, The Recorder, December 28, 2023.
Shook Hardy Hires Morrison & Foerster Trial Lawyer in San Francisco, The Recorder, July 11, 2023.