William Cahill

Hon. William J. Cahill (Ret.)

JAMS Mediator, Arbitrator and Referee/Special Master

Case Manager
Scott Schreiber
T: 415-774-2615
F: 415-982-5287
Two Embarcadero Center, Suite 1500, San Francisco, CA 94111


Hon. William Cahill (Ret.) has been a full time neutral for ten years and is well known for his preparation, adaptability, fairness and neutrality. Judge Cahill has successfully mediated hundreds of disputes in the financial and securities arena while at JAMS and as a judge. He uses his tenacity and perseverance, as well as financial savvy, in order to lead parties to resolution in complex financial disputes.


Judge Cahill’s financial markets experience includes securities and shareholder class actions, cases involving allegations against brokerage and investment firms, stock option backdating cases, and fraud and breach of fiduciary duty cases against banks and directors and officers.  Financial markets cases he has handled often involve complex corporate, financial and insurance issues as well as federal and state court procedural issues. 


Representative Matters

  • Stockholder derivative suit involving allegations related to the purchase of 100 million shares of a public company by alleged private insiders for less than a fair market price

  • Alleged manipulation of stock valuation in a management buyout (MBO) by a national brokerage firm

  • Breach of fiduciary duty claim against a hedge fund for failure to liquidate to avoid a $50 million loss

  • Class action brought by stockholders regarding stock devaluation due to restatement of allegedly fraudulent financials

  • Class action by shareholders for failure to accurately disclose the types of mortgages on financial statement; settled for $75 million

  • Consumer class action against a national bank involving allegations of insufficient disclosures related to adjustable rate mortgage loans

  • D&O case involving issues regarding a publicly traded bank's stock drop

  • Derivative action brought against corporate officers for breach of fiduciary duty

  • Derivative cases involving backdating of stock options and insider trading

  • Derivative options backdating case involving special committee recommendations on corporate governance

  • Fraud case involving breach of fiduciary duty by a public company's Board of Directors; settled for $450 million

  • Securities fraud class action involving insider trading allegedly causing a drop in stock value

  • Securities fraud class action involving management decision to allegedly sell assets at lower than market value

  • Securities fraud class action involving stock valuation in a $1 billion management buyout of publicly traded corporate shares

  • Securities fraud class action related to financial restatements resulting from investigation into revenue recognition and internal controls

  • Fraud case related to unique situation of misrepresentations of educator in sale of investment education

  • Breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty and negligence case against national bank related to its alleged failure to appropriately provide actuarial, accounting and consulting services related to a company’s 401K and profit sharing plan. 

  • Lending fraud class action related to mortgages

Completed Virtual ADR training conducted by the JAMS Institute, the training arm of JAMS.

  • Included on "National Mediators" list, Chambers USA America’s Leading Lawyers for Business, 2017-2022
  • Recognized as a Top California Neutral, Daily Journal, 2004, 2005, 2009-2013
  • Recognized as a Northern California Super Lawyer, ADR Category, San Francisco Magazine, 2004, 2006-2014
  • Recognized as one of the three Best Neutrals in the Bay Area, through an open survey of attorneys, The Recorder, 2007, 2008, and 2009
  • Recognized as one of the “500 Leading Judges in America,” by Lawdragon Magazine, 2006
  • Recognized as one of the Bay Area's Top 10 Mediators and Top 10 Arbitrators, The Recorder, 2002
  • Chosen as the top judge on the San Francisco Superior Court in a poll published in the San Francisco Examiner; Judge Cahill's settlement skills were noted in the December 14, 1998 article
  • Trial Judge of the Year, San Francisco, 1992
  • Lecturer, international, national, and local speaking engagements including topics related to class actions, mediation, employment, arbitration, insurance, construction, ethics, law and motion practice, expert witnesses, and clause drafting, among others
  • Former Member, Chief Justice Ronald George's Committee to revise the California Civil Jury Instructions
  • Judicial Officer, San Francisco Bar Association Bench Bar Media Committee, 1991-2000
  • Former Member, Board of Directors, Association of Business Trial Lawyers, 1996-1998; (In 1994, Judge Cahill was chosen by the ABTL to be an instructor on settlements to both the United States District Court, Northern California and the San Francisco Superior Court benches.)
  • Member, Litigation Section, Bar Association of San Francisco, 2000-present
  • "Reading the Room," ADR Profile, Daily Journal, October 16, 2015
  • Judge, San Francisco County Superior Court, 1991-2000
  • Partner, Bronson, Bronson & McKinnon, 1986-1991
  • J.D., Hastings College of Law, 1979
  • B.S., University of California at Berkeley, 1976

Counsel Comments

    • "As a mediator, Judge Cahill is prepared, diligent, perceptive, and persistent. He devotes his full attention to understanding the dispute, the dynamics of the parties and their counsel, and to reaching a resolution.” 
    • “Judge Cahill is an excellent arbitrator. He can handle matters that are extremely complex and he prepares very thoughtful and careful statements of decision.”




This page is for general information purposes.  JAMS makes no representations or warranties regarding its accuracy or completeness.  Interested persons should conduct their own research regarding information on this website before deciding to use JAMS, including investigation and research of JAMS neutrals. See More

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