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Wynne Carvill

Hon. Wynne S. Carvill (Ret.)

Case Manager
Melissa Ornstil
T: 415-774-2600
F: 415-982-5287
Two Embarcadero Center, Suite 1500, San Francisco, CA 94111


Hon. Wynne Carvill (Ret.) joins JAMS with a rich legal background and experience in a wide range of practice areas, including antitrust, business/commercial, class action, employment and construction.

On the bench, Judge Carvill handled a variety of cases, including civil, criminal and family law. Before his appointment to the bench in 2003, Judge Carvill was a civil litigator for more than 25 years and served as his firm’s general counsel for 12 years.

Judge Carvill moves complex disagreements toward resolution in an efficient manner. Described as humble and analytical, he is praised by attorneys for his professionalism and the high value he places on integrity and candor. Immersing himself in each matter that comes before him, Judge Carvill enjoys engaging attorneys in discourse to understand fully the issues and arguments at hand.

ADR Experience and Qualifications

  • Settled numerous matters in his 16 years as a superior court judge in Alameda (Calif.) County, including two years as a full-time settlement judge handling an average of 10 settlement conferences per week
  • Presided over complex litigation, civil direct, family law, civil bench trials and criminal calendars
  • Served four years in one of Alameda County's two complex litigation departments managing class actions, Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA), antitrust, construction, environmental cases and major commercial disputes 

Representative Matters


  • Trial judge in a series of cases alleging violations of the California Unfair Practices Act and Cartwright Act in grocery store providing discount coupons for gas purchasers (e.g., Dixon Gas Club, LLC v. Safeway, Inc. (7/29/2015, 1st DCA #A139283); Andy’s BP, Inc. v. Safeway, Inc. (8/31/2017, 1st DCA #A147527))  
  • Trial judge in People v. Overstock, Inc., where civil penalties imposed and injunctive relief were granted in false advertising and unfair competition case against an internet retailer (affirmed,12 Cal.App.5th 1064 (2017))
  • Lead counsel in jury trial of an antitrust case in which bank charged with conspiracy to monopolize and monopolization in violation of Sherman Antitrust Act §§1 and 2
  • Lead counsel in jury trial of antitrust challenge to vertical acquisition of a steel tubing company involving alleged violation of Clayton Antitrust Act § 7 and predatory pricing in violation of Sherman Antitrust Act § 2; favorable jury verdict followed reversal of defense summary judgment (California Steel and Tube v. Kaiser Steel Corp., 650 F.2d 1001 (9th Cir. 1981))
  • Lead counsel in a matter involving newspaper and food processor clients in actions alleging below-cost sales in violation of California Unfair Practices Act and other state antitrust statutes
  • Lead counsel in matters involving an ambulance company that was charged with conspiring to monopolize the market for emergency medical services and that filed similar claims against competitors
  • Representation of clients in various federal and state court actions charging price-fixing conspiracies in the beer, cellular phone, cement, credit card, semiconductor, hotel, cosmetics and other industries


  • Trial judge in Lewis v. Safeway, Inc., where demurrer sustained in Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act class action challenging store practice of requesting date of birth in cash register system (affirmed, 235 Cal.App.4th 385 (2015))
  • Trial judge in Ramos v. Westlake Services, where motion to compel arbitration was denied because arbitration clause was in English and plaintiff was a Spanish speaker (affirmed, 242 Cal.App.4th 674 (2015))
  • Trial judge in Professional Engineers v. Transportation Dept., in which a challenge to public-private partnerships on state highway construction project was rejected (affirmed, 198 Cal.App.4th 17 (2011))
  • Trial judge in internet lending casesin which class of borrowers challenged practices of internet lender (denial of motion to compel arbitration reversed (7/24/2014, 1st DCA #A139144))
  • Trial judge in Alarcon v. Fireside Bank, in which plaintiff alleged violations of Rees-Levering Motor Vehicle Sales and Finance Act in vehicle purchase (affirmed and reversed in part (3/8/2010, 1st DCA #A117148))
  • Trial judge in Flanagan v. Donohue, whichinvolved a commercial lease dispute (denial of attorneys’ fees affirmed (6/13/2013, 1st DCA #A136055))
  • Trial judge in Pyne v. Fletcher Jones Management Group, Inc., in which an employee sued for wrongful termination and harassment (motions to compel arbitration affirmed and reversed in part (2/19/2013, 1st DCA #A129654))
  • Trial judge in Ideal Boat & Camper Storage v. County of Alameda,in which plaintiff challenged county’s denial of application for site development (affirmed (8/9/2012, 1st DCA #A132714))
  • Trial judge in Barrera v. Wells Fargo Bank,in which a non-judicial foreclosure sale was challenged (affirmed (8/12/2011, 1st DCA #A129915))
  • Trial judge in Emeryville Redevelopment Agency v. Robinson (Alameda Sup. Ct. #RG06-267594), in which some soil remediation costs were recovered in a non-jury trial
  • Trial judge in Capital Alliance v. Gateway Bank (Alameda Sup. Ct. #RG09-491875), in which parties disputed remittances on the sale of a mortgage loan portfolio
  • Trial judge in Bui v. Potashnick (Alameda Sup. Ct. #RG07-349762), in which a buyer of pharmacies sued the seller for providing false financial statements
  • Trial judge in Elstead v. JPMorgan Chase Bank (Alameda Sup. Ct. #2002-046193), in which a borrower sued a mortgage bank for the mishandling of a loan and attempted foreclosure
  • Trial judge in Zuffa v. Zuffa (VG09-429982), in which an owner sought to quiet title against a mortgage lender
  • Trial judge in Thornton v. Cheney Transportation (Alameda Sup. Ct. #VG09-447464), in which an owner sought business interruption damages arising from property damage
  • Trial judge in Shinneman v. Vittaly (Alameda Sup. Ct. #C-841222), in which shareholders sued one another in the context of a corporate dissolution
  • Trial judge in Byrd v. Worthington (Alameda Sup. Ct. #2002-071249), in which after an asset sale dispute arose as to the seller’s liability for post-sale tort damages from pre-sale circumstances
  • Extensive experience in various kinds of unfair competition complaints under California Business & Professions Code § 17200
  • Representation of both vendors and users in litigation arising from large software/system integration projects
  • Trial counsel in a major software development dispute
  • Lead counsel in a tax refund case for an Alaska native corporation
  • Trial counsel in a case in which a bank was charged with fraud in the sale of bank branches, with issues relating to accounting of income and expenses in credit card business
  • Lead counsel in a franchise dispute (Boat & Motor Mart v. Sea Ray Boats, 825 F.2d 1285 (9th Cir. 1987))


  • Trial judge in Duran v. U.S. National Bank, in which plaintiffs sought Labor Code recovery based on the misclassification of account executives (denial of class certification affirmed, 19 Cal.App.5th 630 (2018))
  • Trial judge in Bartoni v. American Medical Response West, in which plaintiffs challenged various meal and rest break policies (denial of class certification affirmed and denied in part, 11 Cal.App.5th 1084 (2017))
  • Trial judge in Jong v. Kaiser Foundation Health Plan, in which a class of store managers sought overtime for off-the-clock work (summary judgment affirmed, 226 Cal.App.4th 391 (2014))
  • Trial judge in Araquistain v. Pacific Gas & Electric, in which a putative class sought compensation for off-duty meal breaks (summary judgment affirmed, 229 CalApp.4th 227 (2014))
  • Trial judge in Lopez v. Pacific Bell Telephone, in which a sales executives claimed misclassification (denial of class certification affirmed (2/26/2014, 1st DCA #A135589))
  • Trial judge in Sutter Health wage and hour cases, in which registered nurses asserted meal and rest break claims (denial of class certification affirmed (6/3/2014, 1st DCA #A137875))
  • Trial judge in Duran v. Roman Catholic Welfare Corp., in which the plaintiff asserted national origin discrimination (dismissal affirmed (12/7/2012, 1st DCA #A1133980))
  • Trial judge in Marine v. Interstate Distribution Co. (Alameda Sup. Ct. #RG07-358277), in which a class of long-haul drivers sued their employer for meal and rest break violations
  • Trial judge in Unity Courier Service wage and hour cases(JCCP 4691), in which an employee class recovered unpaid wages in a bench trial
  • Trial judge in Duprue v. Albertsons (Alameda Sup. Ct. #RG14-718404), in which the plaintiff alleged violation of California’s Family Rights Act
  • Trial judge in Klaas v. ValleyCare Health Systems (Alameda Sup. Ct. #RG14-718404), in which the plaintiff alleged wrongful termination and retaliation
  • Trial judge in Vanderheiden v. City of Alameda (Alameda Sup. Ct. #RG06-0283619), in which the plaintiff fireman alleged wrongful termination and retaliation
  • Trial judge in numerous appeals for trial de novo after a Berman hearing (Labor Code § 98.2 et seq.) before the labor commissioner (e.g., Lan v. Comcast Corporation, LLC (4/24/2015, 1st DCA #140039); O’Dell v. International Asset Systems (Alameda Sup. Ct. #RG06-254576))
  • Lead counsel representing both employers and employees in various trade secret cases, including matters involving software and computer technology

Personal Injury/Torts

  • Trial judge in asbestos trials (e.g., Adams v. Asbestos Corp. (Alameda Sup. Ct. #RG14-718404); Swasey v. Asbestos Companies (Alameda Sup. Ct. #RG15-758585))
  • Trial judge in Jones v. Eden Housing Management, Inc. (Alameda Sup. Ct. #VG04-153398), in which the plaintiff sued for negligent undertaking
  • Trial judge in various tort cases (e.g., Luttrell v. Island Pacific Supermarkets, Inc. (4/8/2013, 1st DCA #134089)(slip & fall); Weldon v. Safeway, Inc. (5/31/2012, 1st DCA #131447) (injury in store door); Bhatia Costco Wholesale Corp. (Alameda Sup. Ct. #RG09-469860) (fatal automobile crash); Santangelo v. Galicia (Alameda Sup. Ct. #HG08-381973) (automobile crash); Owens v. Sorensen (Alameda Sup. Ct. #RG06-282560) (automobile crash))  
  • Settlement judge in numerous cases arising out of automobile accidents, termination/discrimination scenarios, medical procedures, tenant evictions, etc.

Professional Liability

  • As general counsel for a large firm for over 12 years, was responsible for resolving conflicts and professional negligence claims and litigation


  • Trial judge in Gallimore v. Kaiser Foundation Health Plan (Alameda Sup. Ct. #RG12-616206), in which the plaintiff challenged a carrier’s denial of coverage for certain allegedly “cosmetic” surgical procedures
  • Trial judge in Futterman v. Kaiser Foundation Health Plan (Alameda Sup. Ct. #RG13-697775), in which the plaintiff challenged a carrier’s denial of coverage for certain mental health services
  • As settlement judge, resolved numerous cases in which underlying disputes involved insurance coverage and/or bad faith claims
  • Counsel in administrative and judicial proceedings challenging California insurance commissioner's efforts pursuant to Proposition 103 to force a leading insurer to rebate premiums (20th Century v. Garamendi, 8 Cal.4th 216 (1994))
  • Lead counsel in insurance coverage litigation for a carrier on environmental impairment liability policy (International Ins. Co. v. Duryee 96 F.3d 837 (6th Cir. 1996))
  • Acted as outside general counsel to California Self-Insurers’ Security Fund for 12 years, handling a number of in-house issues

Intellectual Property

  • Trial judge in Mindshare Benefits v. Kleinschmidt (Alameda Sup. Ct. #RG05-203514), in which employer sued competitor and former employee for trade secrets theft
  • Lead trial counsel for a matter involving an employee allegedly taking trade secrets from one employer to another (Vermont Microsystems v. Autodesk (2d Cir. 1996) 88 F.3d 142)
  • Lead counsel in trademark infringement cases for major credit card company (e.g., VISA International Serv. Ass’n v. Bankcard Holders of America, 784 F.2d 1472 (9th Cir. 1986))

Selected Memberships and Affiliations

  • Member, California Judges Association, 2004–present
  • Member, Alameda County Bar Association, 2004–present
  • Member, San Francisco Bar Association, 1978–2003; 2019–present
  • Member, Antitrust and Litigation Sections, American Bar Association, 1978–2003
  • Member, Antitrust Section, California Lawyers Association (formerly California State Bar), 1978–2003
  • Member, Earl Warren Chapter, American Inns of Court, 2008–2010
  • Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights, 1986–2003
    • Co-Chair, 1993–1995
  • Mediator, Early Settlement Program, San Francisco Superior Court, 2000–2003
  • Member, Judiciary Committee, San Francisco Bar Association, 1997–1999
  • Admitted to California Bar, 1977
  • Admitted to Massachusetts Bar, 1974

Selected Awards and Honors

  • Trial Judge of the Year, Alameda-Contra Costa County Trial Lawyers’ Association, 2015
  • Robert G. Sproul, Jr. Award for Pro Bono Work, San Francisco Lawyers’ Committee, 1991

Selected Teaching and Speaking Engagements

  • Speaker, Practising Law Institute, 1988–2003
    • Microsoft Antitrust Litigation, 2002–2003
    • Intellectual Property/Antitrust, 1992–1995, 1997–2001
    • Patent Antitrust, 1989
    • Deposition Skills Training Program, 1988
  • Member, Litigation Section Panel, Trade Secrets, American Bar Association, 1987
  • Instructor, University of California, Hastings, Federal Trial Practice Program, 1986–1988
  • Instructor, University of California, Hastings, College of Trial Advocacy, 1984–1985, 1989

Selected Professional Activities

  • Editor, The Journal of Proprietary Rights, 1989–1991
  • Editor-in-Chief, San Francisco Bar Association’s Northern District of California Digest, 1982–1984
  • Alameda County Superior Court, 2003–2019
    • Presiding Judge, 2018–2019
    • Assistant Presiding Judge and Settlement Judge, 2016–2017
    • Supervising Judge, Civil, 2012–2015
    • Complex Litigation, 2012–2015
    • Civil Direct Calendar, 2010–2011
    • Family Law, 2007–2009
    • Civil Non-Jury Trials, 2006
    • Criminal, 2004–2005
  • Thelen Reid & Priest (and predecessor Thelen, Marrin, Johnson & Bridges), 1977–2003
    • Partner, 1982–2003
    • National Co-Chair, Commercial Litigation Department, 1999–2003
    • Chair, Risk Management Committee, 1993–2003
    • General Counsel, 1993–2003
    • Associate, 1977–1981
  • Law Clerk, The Honorable Gerald Bard Tjoflat, United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, 1976–1977
  • Law Clerk, Superior Court of Massachusetts, 1975
  • Teaching Fellow, Boston College School of Law, 1974–1975 
  • J.D., cum laude, Harvard Law School, 1974
  • B.A., summa cum laude, Williams College, 1971



Practice Areas

  • Antitrust & Competition
  • Business & Commercial
  • Class Action & Mass Tort
  • Employment Law
  • Insurance
  • Intellectual Property
  • Personal Injury/Torts
  • Professional Liability


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