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Patrick Mahoney

Hon. Patrick J. Mahoney (Ret.)

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Case Manager
Cairo Person
T: 415-774-2629
F: 415-774-5287
Two Embarcadero Center , Suite 1500 , San Francisco , CA 94111

Hon. Patrick J. Mahoney (Ret.) brings to his full-time ADR practice over 45 years of legal experience as a civil litigator, judge and ADR neutral. Judge Mahoney’s unique career has covered a wide-range of matters including business/commercial, securities, antitrust, trade secrets, technology ventures, environmental, employment, family law, civil rights, insurance, real property, torts, attorney’s fees, and professional liability.

Judge Mahoney is noted for his ability to listen, probe and express opinions where appropriate. He treats each case as a unique experience where it is essential to understand each party’s case, their interests and what is critical to resolve or adjudicate the dispute. The process begins before the parties appear by receiving input on the issues to be addressed, recommendations on how to proceed and written submissions. Thereafter, Judge Mahoney continues to work with the parties until the matter is concluded. The skills Judge Mahoney developed as a civil litigator tempered with his broad judicial experience have shaped his ability to work with parties and counsel in a myriad of settings including business, government, non-profit, and family law.

ADR Experience and Qualifications

  • Served as one of the original panelists on the San Francisco Bar Association Early Settlement Program hearing over 100 cases until appointment to the bench in 2000.
  • Served as Early Neutral Evaluator for the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California evaluating civil rights cases
  • Negotiated numerous class action securities litigation settlements with private parties and the government.
  • As Chief Trial Deputy, responsible for overseeing approximately 1,200 ongoing cases and negotiated to resolution major personal injury, police misconduct, employment, civil rights, ADA claims, Qui Tam actions and False Claims Act claims.
  • As a judicial officer, settled cases in civil, criminal, juvenile and family law assignments.
  • Lectures and writings on effective mediation skills, negotiation strategies, resolving public entity cases, recurring arbitration issues, mediation and arbitration of employment cases and a variety of family law issues.

Representative Matters

  • Asbestos
    • Over 100 law and motion summary judgment rulings on liability and damages
    • Multi-party settlements negotiated
    • Susan Janes v. A.W. Chesterton Co., CGC-04-436144: application of the sophisticated user defense 
  • Business/Commercial
    • Mediated disputes involving breach of contract claims, interpretation of technology development agreements, break up of several closely held businesses, enforcement of stock option agreements, the implementation of partnership buyout agreements and trade disparagement claims
    • Mediated disputes among family members concerning interests in real property and family business
    • Arbitrated disputes involving the interpretation of by-laws, private club agreements, limited partnership agreements and termination of at will corporate officers
    • Early neutral evaluation of a dispute involving the interpretation of joint venture technology agreements between a major US and foreign corporation
    • Phoenix American Inc. v. Lease Management Associates Inc., No. 318820 & A115400: ruled on successor liability, alter ego, piercing the corporate veil, merger, valuation
    • Center for Self-Improvement & Community Development v. Lennar Corp., (2009) 173 Cal.App.4th 1543, CGC-07-465738 & A121982: effect of suspension of corporate powers
  • Civil Rights
    • Mediated claims of discrimination based on physical disabilities, age, race and gender
    • Mediated the rights of prisoners to receive written materials
    • Resolved ADA cases including claims by low visibility riders of a transit system
    • Settled politically sensitive case regarding police raid on a private party; Settlement included non-monetary relief that addressed community concerns
    • Settlement of class actions arising out of mass arrests related to Rodney King demonstrations
    • Tried to verdict police shooting case
    • Ninth Circuit arguments on police misconduct issues
  • Construction
    • Mediated class action wage and hour claim related to an airport construction project
    • Mediated dispute between city and public entity over the interpretation of a contract to build an underpass
    • Mediated dispute between contractor, developer and home owner over the construction and sale of residence
    • Mediated dispute between architect and client over fees and alleged design defects
    • Martin McEnery Development, Inc. v. Gold River Contractors, CGC-05-438748 & A123564: decided construction defect claim involving drywall, affirmed on appeal
    • Borregaard Construction Co. v. Carrara Marble Co., CGC-04-434906: dispute over the quality and installation of marble
  • Employment
    • Mediated claims of sexual harassment, racial discrimination, disability discrimination, retaliation, and wrongful termination
    • Mediated matters regarding wage and hour disputes, failure to provide meal and rest breaks, failure to pay overtime, and failure to furnish accurate wage statements
    • Mediated claim by senior public employee for wrongful discharge as a whistle blower
    • Mediated disputes involving the termination of senior executives
    • Arbitrations involving termination of CEO, severance and wage claims; dispute involving alleged misclassification as exempt employee and related wage and expense claims; partnership breakup and claim for lost wages; termination of sales executive, interference with prospective economic opportunity and failure to pay timely commissions; allegations of defamation and blacklisting directed at a departing investment advisor.
    • Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. v. Yu, CGC-07-467125: severance agreement dispute
    • Conley v. PG&E, (2005) 131 Cal.App.4th 260, 310938 & A105832: class action wage and hour claim 
  • Family
    • Mediated or served as a private judge in numerous family law matters with issues including:
      • Divorce/dissolution
      • Property management rights
      • Real and personal property claims
      • Complex corporate transactions
      • Transmutation agreements
      • Spousal and child support determinations
      • Attorney fees
      • Pre and post nuptial agreements
      • Custody and visitation issues
      • Palimony claims and Marvin actions
    • Conducted Unified Family Court negotiations related to custody, visitation, property, and financial issues; dependency settlement conferences; and mediating disputes between and among public agencies related to providing services to youth
    • Numerous dependency cases regarding issues of abuse, neglect, mental health, substance abuse, return of children to parents, and termination of services to parents
    • Determined the enforceability of pre and post nuptial agreements, custody issues, interests in foreign assets, spousal and child support, interim attorney’s fees and community and separate property interests
    • Sagonowsky v. Kekoa, FDI-03-755091: community and separate property analysis, transmutation, undue influence, 401(k) issues, spousal support, personal property valuation and allocation, sanctions and Feldman claims, debts, education expenses, breach of fiduciary duty, attorneys’ fees
  • Government
    • Mediated dispute involving public entities, investment advisor related to school bond issues
    • Mediated dispute between county and local school districts related to the authorization of charter schools
    • Mediated case regarding scope of work, costs, and future obligations with relation to the completion of a local public transportation project
    • Mediated claim of a whistleblower against public official.
    • Williams v. State of California, No. 312236: structured $989 million class action settlement regarding adequacy of funding for public schools with a focus on textbooks, facilities, and class size
    • State of California ex rel. Stull v. Bank of America NT & SA, et al., No. 968-484: handled multi-million settlement of whistleblower action seeking to recover damages for the mismanagement of bond proceeds
    • County of Alameda v. Judicial Council of California, CPF-05-505884: breach of contract issues
    • Defend Bayview Hunters Point v. City & County of San Francisco, (2008) 167 Cal.App.4th 846, CPF-06-506863 & A119061: interpretation of an election ordinance
    • People v. Norteno, a criminal street gang, CGC-07-464492: gang injunction
    • SN Sands Corp. v. City & County of San Francisco, (2008) 167 Cal.App.4th 185, 507-848: approval of a government contract and interpretation of City charter
  • Insurance
    • Arbitration of multi-million dollar claim by financial entity against four insurance carriers involving interpretation of coverage for settlement of a dispute with a former partner
    • Arbitration of dispute between hospital and insurer over reimbursement claims
    • Evaluated numerous identity theft claims in class action health insurance case
    • Interstate Fire & Casualty Insurance Co. v. Cleveland Wrecking Co., (2010) 182 Cal.App.4th 23, 475134 & A124920: subrogation, contractual indemnification, good faith settlement
  • Professional Liability and Fees
    • Settled matter involving the breach of an architectural design contract for failure to pay for labor and materials and seeking the payment of attorneys’ fees
    • Mediated attorneys’ fees claims in civil rights cases
    • Arbitrated dispute involving the payment of professional fees for expert witness
    • Mediated accounting malpractice claim
    • Bradlow v. Grant Thornton LLP, CGC 04 437423: claim by Receiver against its accounting firm for malpractice and failure to disclose material facts
    • City of Mountain View v. Daoro, Zydel & Holland, CGC-06-453560: alleged failure to audit
    • Determined interim attorney’s fees in family law and Public Records Act cases
    • Les Jankey v. Song Koo Lee, 55 Cal. 4th 1038: award of attorneys’ fees in a disability rights case
    • California Correctional Peace Officers v. Virga, 450906 & A123989: attorney’s fees under California Torts Claims Act
  • Real Property
    • Mediated landlord tenant matters involving rent control, property management claims and move out agreements
    • Mediated shopping center use disputes involving authorized use, parking and maintenance issues
    • Arbitrated commercial contract related to the use of real property;
    • Arbitrated HOA dispute related to repairs and insurance issues
    • Resolved multi-million dollar settlement of property damage claim arising out of a broken pipeline on the Hetch Hetchy water system
    • Macor, Inc. v. City & County of San Francisco, CGC-07-460994 & A122276: quiet title, adverse possession, equitable estoppel, injunctive and declaratory relief, alienation of tidelands, settled with appeal pending
  • Securities
    • Settled multiple multi-district class action securities cases involving claims against corporations, officers and directors, accountants, and venture capitalists
    • Blackie v. Barrack, (9th Circuit) 524 F.2d 891 cert. denied (1976) 429 U.S. 816: landmark securities case
    • In re Activision Securities Litigation, (N.D. Cal. 1985) 621 F.Supp. 415: class action involving allegations against officers and directors, underwriters, accountant, and investors and director
    • In re Trilogy Securities Litigation, U.S. District Court, N.D.: expedited settlement that provided shareholders compensation and the company the opportunity to avoid bankruptcy
  • Personal Injury/Torts
    • ENE hearing addressing alleged criminal violations in the operation of a heating unit resulting in the evacuation of a hotel
    • Mediated wrongful death claim involving a bus accident
    • Mediated disability rights case involving claims of indemnity between a county and a third-party service provider
    • Mediated defamation, elder abuse, property and personal injury claims
    • Hill v. Dameron Hospital Association, CGC-08-475520: interpretation of the Hospital Lien Act
    • Ramirez v. California Highway Patrol, CGC-04-432914 & A121607: wrongful death based on officer negligence, affirmed
    • Burns v. Neiman Marcus Group Inc., (2009) 173 Cal.App.4th 1543, 457841 & A120378, (2009) 173 Cal.App.4th 479: fraudulent use of checking account, affirmed
    • Lhotka v. Geographic Expeditions, 477496 & A123725, (2010) 181 Cal.App.4th 816: wrongful death and motion to compel arbitration in a release form, affirmed
    • Charles Ethier & Shirley Ethier v. Jhon Poindexter, M.D., CGC 05-437623: wrongful death case involving an alleged failure to diagnose a brain fracture
    • Michelle Dosch v. Monica and Allen Zimmerman, 03-418453: claims of negligence and breach of implied warranty of habitability based on mold allegedly causing health issues
  • Trade Secrets
    • Arbitration involving alleged use of trade secrets claim by a terminated employee
    • Protiva Biotherapeutics Inc. v. Sirna Therapeutics, Inc., CGC-06-450694: preliminary injunction ruling addressing claims of misappropriation of biotechnology trade secrets, unfair competition, fraud, constructive trust, joint venture, and related agreements
    • Litigated claims involving semiconductors, printers, hand held devices, financial services, customer lists
  • Recipient, Board of Supervisors of the City and County of San Francisco Community Boards Leadership Peacemaker Award, 2013
  • Certificates of Honor, Appreciation and Recognition from San Francisco District Attorney, the Office of the Public Defender, and the California State Senate in 2013, for reducing truancy, for improving the quality of juvenile justice and inspiring a generation of community leaders
  • Resolution of Recognition, San Francisco Commission on the Status of Women 2013, for convening a variety of task forces of city agencies to streamline services for families and children
  • Recipient, Kids’ Turn Award for dedication to the well-being of children, 2013; City Youth Now Community Achievement Award, 2011
  • Executive Committee Member, San Francisco Superior Court, 2001-2003 and 2007-2012
  • Participant, Pepperdine University School of Law, Straus Institute, Mediating the Litigated Case, 2012; University of Oxford, California Judges Program, England, 2010
  • Member, California Judges Association Legislative Committee, 2011-2012
  • Board of Directors, Edgewood Center for Children & Families, 2015 Youth Treatment and Education Center, 2006-2012; Kids’ Turn, 2009-2014; Legal Community Against Violence, 1994-2000; Legal Aid Society of San Francisco, 1986-1994; College Preparatory School, 1990-1993
  • Master, Edward J. McFetridge American Inn of Court, 1997-present
  • Board of Governors, Association of Business Trial Lawyers, 1997-2004
  • Panelist, Bar Association of San Francisco Early Settlement Program, 1985-2000; Early Neutral Evaluator, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, 1997-2002
  • Speaker and author on a variety of topics including litigation, law and motion, mental health, delinquency, family law, judicial leadership, dispute resolution and class action securities
  • "Touch of Reality," ADR Profile, Daily Journal, March 28, 2014
  • Judge, San Francisco Superior Court, 2000-2013
    • Supervising Judge, Unified Family Court, 2009-2013 
    • Law and Motion Department, 2007-2009
    • Supervising Judge, Juvenile Delinquency, 2003-2006
  • Chief Trial Deputy, San Francisco City Attorney’s Office, 1992-2000
  • Partner, Cooley LLP, 1976-1992 (Associate, 1972-1976) 
    • Member, Executive Committee, 1976-1988
  • Associate, Arent, Fox, Kintner Plotkin & Kahn, 1969 -1972
  • J.D., Hastings College of the Law, 1969 (Order of Coif, Law Review)
  • CORO Foundation Fellow, Public Affairs Internship, 1965-1966
  • B.A., Political Science, Stanford University, 1965

Counsel Comments

    Recipient, Board of Supervisors of the City and County of San Francisco Community Boards Leadership Peacemaker Award, 2013

    "[Judge Mahoney's] impressive judicial temperament and quick grasp of the law was invaluable in getting us to settlement." --General Counsel, Public Agency

    "[Judge Mahoney is] capable of grasping complicated case law and complicated financial information…. As a longtime trial lawyer, he has the nuanced ability to measure the strengths of argument in a real-world perspective."  
    - Former Chief Assistant District Attorney for the City and County of San Francisco

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