Douglas Winthrop, a former United States Supreme Court law clerk, focuses his commercial litigation practice on business torts, contract disputes, class action defense, unfair competition and intellectual property at both the trial court and appellate levels.

Mr. Winthrop has extensive experience in complex commercial litigation. Since 2007, he has represented a US mortgage insurance company in multimillion-dollar rescission and RESPA litigation as well as ongoing litigation relating to mortgage insurance benefit curtailments based on loan servicing deficiencies. Mr. Winthrop has represented numerous financial services, technology and Internet companies, as well as the United States Olympic Committee, in contract disputes, consumer class actions, suits raising claims of misrepresentation, breach of fiduciary duty, breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, trade secret misappropriation and other business torts, as well as copyright and trademark matters.

Mr. Winthrop was honored with the Artistic Freedom Award by the ACLU of Southern California for his and his colleagues' successful representation of artist Thomas Forsythe against claims of trademark and copyright infringement brought by Mattel, Inc. (Mattel, Inc. v. Walking Mountain Prods., 353 F.3d 792 (9th Cir. 2003)).

Mr. Winthrop served as law clerk to Associate Justice John Paul Stevens of the United States Supreme Court, 1992-1993, and to Judge Patricia M. Wald of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, 1991-1992.

Mr. Winthrop graduated magna cum laude from the University of Minnesota Law School, where he was an Editor of the Minnesota Law Review and was awarded the Order of the Coif.

Experience

  • PMI Mortgage Insurance Co., in Rehabilitation, and its court-appointed receiver in prosecution of trade secret misappropriation, breach of fiduciary duty and conversion claims against former employees and competitor.
  • Leading on-line retailer in defense of $57 million breach of contract claims resulting in defense arbitration award and fee recovery.
  • American subsidiary of large, international semiconductor company in defense of trade secret claims resulting in dismissal of claims and fee recovery.
  • Leading residential mortgage lender in defense of class action suit claiming home mortgage lenders are required under California law to pay interest on funds held in insurance proceeds escrow accounts resulting in Court of Appeal ruling affirming dismissal of suit.
  • American subsidiary of large, international semiconductor company in defense of breach of contract claim resulting in defense arbitration award and fee recovery.
  • Employee of Salesforce.com Inc. in defense of trade secret and breach of contract claims brought by former employer.
  • PMI Mortgage Insurance Co., in Rehabilitation, and its court-appointed receiver in defense of breach of contract claims asserted by mortgage loan servicer over curtailments of mortgage insurance benefits.
  • Leading on-line retailer in defense of numerous consumer class action suits alleging unfair competition and false advertising.
  • Leading West Coast retailer in defense of class action suit alleging unfair competition and false advertising.
  • PMI Mortgage Insurance Co. in numerous, multimillion-dollar matters raising misrepresentation, rescission and breach of express and implied contract claims.
  • Aircraft manufacturer in defense of breach of contract and product liability claims relating to manufacture and delivery of helicopters.
  • PMI Mortgage Insurance Co. in defense of claim by vendor that insurer had wrongfully terminated contract.
  • Oakland Raiders in misrepresentation litigation related to the Raiders' return to Oakland and in appellate matters.
  • CMG Mortgage Insurance Co. in defense of suit claiming wrongful rescission of mortgage insurance coverage.
  • Salesforce.com Inc. in defense of breach of license claim brought by customer.
  • American subsidiary of large, international semiconductor company in indemnity dispute relating to patent litigation brought against customer.
  • American subsidiary of large, international semiconductor company in indemnity dispute and related license litigation arising from sale of fabrication facility.
  • Time Inc. in defense of class action claims for unfair competition and false advertising.
  • Salesforce.com Inc. in prosecution of false advertising and unfair competition claims against competitor.
  • On-line retailer in defense of class action claims for unfair competition and false advertising.

Perspectives

How Secret Must a Trade Secret Be?
Daily Journal

Recognition

Northern California Super Lawyers
(2004-2020)
Law360
"Legal Lion of the Week" (March 2020)

Credentials

Education
  • JD, University of Minnesota Law School, 1991, magna cum laude, Order of the Coif
  • AB, Harvard University, 1986, magna cum laude
Admissions
  • California
  • District of Columbia
Clerkships
  • Supreme Court of the United States, The Honorable John Paul Stevens
  • United States Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit, The Honorable Patricia M. Wald
Activities
  • Member, State Bar of California
  • Member, Bar Association of the District of Columbia
  • Member, Bar Association of San Francisco
  • Member, American Bar Association
  • Secretary, The John Paul Stevens Fellowship Foundation
  • Member, Board of Directors, Assistant Treasurer, Jewish Family & Children's Services of San Francisco
  • Member, Advisory Council, Tahirih Justice Center
Overview

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