Stephen Cha-Kim is a member of the Complex Litigation practice and represents U.S. and global clients. A former Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, he brings extensive experience handling all stages of affirmative and defensive civil litigation — from pre-suit investigations through trial and appeal. In his eight years as an AUSA, Stephen represented the federal government before the U.S. District, Bankruptcy, and Circuit Courts in matters involving financial fraud, customs fraud, healthcare fraud, civil rights, environmental, tax, regulatory, tort, national security, commercial, art and intellectual property, and international law.

At SDNY, Stephen led matters arising under the federal False Claims Act, the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act, the Bank Secrecy Act, the Administrative Procedure Act, Title VII, the Clean Air Act, the Food and Drug Act, the Affordable Care Act, the CARES Act, the Copyright Act, and state common law. These sensitive and cutting-edge cases involved the Department of Justice as well as a wide range of other federal agencies, including the Departments of State, Treasury, Defense, Health and Human Services, Transportation, and Commerce, as well as the Central Intelligence Agency, National Security Agency, Export-Import Bank, Internal Revenue Service, Food & Drug Administration, Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Agency for Global Media, and the Smithsonian Institution. Stephen managed complex, multi-agency investigations of public and corporate entities; obtained numerous trial victories; negotiated favorable settlements; and briefed and argued appeals before the Second Circuit involving issues of first impression.

During his government tenure, Stephen served on detail to the White House Counsel’s Office as Associate Counsel to the President, advising the Biden Administration on regulatory and litigation-related matters. He served as an Adjunct Professor at New York University School of Law, co-teaching a course on government civil litigation, and at Fordham Law School (2018-2020), where he taught legal writing.

Stephen was named a Student Marshal at the University of Chicago, the highest undergraduate honor, and was a Donnelley Research Fellow at Cambridge University. He attended Harvard Law School, where he was elected co-president of HLS Lambda. He began his legal career as a Skadden Fellow litigating employment matters in federal and state courts at Make the Road New York, a leading non-profit organization. He subsequently clerked for SDNY U.S. Magistrate Judge James Cott and U.S. District Judge Edmond Chang of the Northern District of Illinois.

Born in Seoul, Stephen speaks Korean, as well as French and Spanish.


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  • J.D., Harvard Law School, 2011
  • MPhil, Classical Art & Archaeology, University of Cambridge, 2009
  • B.A., Classical Studies, University of Chicago, 2007, Phi Beta Kappa
  • New York
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
Government & Military Service
  • Assistant U.S. Attorney, U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York (2015-2023)

  • Associate Counsel to the President, The White House Counsel's Office (July 2021-January 2022)

  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, The Honorable Edmond E. Chang
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, The Honorable James L. Cott
  • Adjunct Professor, New York University School of Law (2018-2023)
  • Korean
  • French
  • Spanish

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