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Cathy Yanni

Cathy Yanni

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Case Manager
Darcy English
T: 415-774-2635
F: 415-982-5287
Two Embarcadero Center , Suite 1500 , San Francisco , CA 94111

Cathy Yanni is a full time specialist in ADR. Since joining JAMS in 1998, she has settled thousands of cases. Her practice includes mediation and Special Master work. Cathy Yanni’s substantive knowledge, her focused attention to detail, and her persistent follow up are the keys to her high success.

ADR Experience and Qualifications

Class Actions/Mass Torts:

  • Pharmaceutical cases mediated, acted as Special Master and allocated:
    • Opioids, Abilify Transvaginal Mesh, St. Jude Riata, St. Jude Eon, Infuse Medtronic, Advanced Bionics Cochlear implants, Avandia, Quinine, Gadolinium, Zicam I and II, ReNu, Denture cream, Bextra-Celebrex, Ortho Evra, Zyprexa I and II, Silicone Gel Breast Implants, Baycol, PPA, Fen-Phen, Yaz
  • Consumer class actions involving multiple high-tech companies, Apple, Toshiba, Yahoo, Palm:
    • Claims concerning operating systems, iPod nano, iTunes gift cards, iPhone antenna smart phones, pricing, apps, iPad data plans, desktop and notebook computers, software, computer displays, and digital music players
  • Financial services: bank leasing agreements, mortgage, and securities cases
  • Food labeling
  • Privacy/Data Breach

Special Master:

  • Class action/mass torts/MDLs
  • Settlement Special Master: mediate and allocate


  • Wage and hour disputes, PAGA
  • Claims including race, gender, and age discrimination, sexual harassment, wrongful discharge
  • ERISA: class actions, breach of fiduciary duty, denial of long-term benefits

Elder Abuse:

  • All types of physical and financial elder abuse cases including actions against skilled nursing facilities, residential care facilities, assisted living facilities, and hospitals, plus claims of understaffing, fraud, mishandling finances, and unfair business practices

Intellectual Property:

  • Trade secret, copyright, and patent disputes involving biotech, computer software and hardware


  • First, third party, and excess coverage disputes involving multiple carriers


  • Contract, business, and accounting disputes


  • All types of catastrophic personal injury, elder abuse, molestation, wrongful death, toxic torts, and product liability matters

San Diego Fire Cases:

  • Mediated hundreds of claims including business losses, property damage, and personal injury claims arising from the October 2007 San Diego wild fires

Representative Matters

  • Settlement Special Master for In Re National Prescription Opiate Litigation MDL. Appointed by the Hon. Daniel A. Polster, United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio
  • Settlement Special Master for Abilify Product Liability Litigation, MDL, Appointed by The Hon. M. Casey Rodgers
  • Transvaginal Mesh (TVM) Cases: Appointed by Hon. Joseph Goodwin, Southern District of West Virginia as Special Master to assist with the administration and implementation of multiple settlements in the Boston Scientific, Covidien, and BARD, MDLs. Mediated and allocated thousands of cases that were a part of the associated MDLs.
  • Medtronic Infuse: settled and allocated claims
  • St. Jude Riata Lead Wire Medical Device Litigation: Retained by the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee and St. Jude as Mediator and Special Master. Mediated hundreds of claims and oversaw the allocation process
  • St. Jude Medical/Eon Mini Model Cases: Retained by the plaintiffs and St. Jude Medical as Mediator. Special Master for allocation of settlement funds, heard appeals and served as the final arbitrator
  • Special Master for the administration and implementation of the $2.45 billion settlement in the In re: DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., ASR™ Hip Implant Products Liability Litigation. Appointed by the Hon. David A. Katz, United States District Court, Ohio
  • Gadolinium Contrast Dyes Product Liability Litigation: Settlement and Discovery Special Master: appointed by the Hon. Dan Polster, Northern District of Ohio. Appointed mediator by The Hon. Richard Kramer, SF Superior Court
  • Silicone Gel Breast Implant Litigation: Appointed Federal Mediator by The Hon. Denise Hood, U.S. District Court Eastern District Michigan, to resolve cases arising out of the Dow Corning Settlement Fund
  • Zyprexa I, II – Appointed Federal Special Master by The Hon. Jack Weinstein, United States District Court, Eastern District of New York
  • Baycol – Appointed Federal Mediator by The Hon. Michael J. Davis, District of Minnesota
  • PPA - Appointed Mediator by the Hon. Anthony Mohr, Superior Court of California, Los Angeles County, settled Multi-District Federal litigation and state court cases
  • In re Fen-Phen Diet Drug Litigation, settled over 1,000 Fen-Phen 
  • Class action involving the citizens of Guam and distribution of earned income tax credits of $90 million (mediated in Guam)
  • Recognized as an “ADR Champion”, National Law Journal, 2016
  • Recognized as "Top Master," Daily Journal Top California Neutrals List, 2013
  • Recognized as a "Top California Neutral," Daily Journal, 2003-2008, 2010-2012
  • Recognized as AV Preeminent in Martindale-Hubbell Lawyer Ratings
  • Woman of Achievement Award, Legal Momentum, 2008
  • Past President and Board of Directors, Academy of Court-Appointed Masters (ACAM)
  • Board of Directors, The American College of e-Neutrals (ACESIN)
  • Lecturer, Mediation and Negotiation, Stanford Law School, University of California Berkeley School of Law, University of San Francisco School of Law, Golden Gate Law School, Hastings College of the Law, University of San Diego School of Law, Duke University Law School
  • Sedona Conference: E-Discovery Dispute Resolution Program for Special Masters & Mediators
  • Conducts CLE seminars on ADR: Mediation, Negotiation, Ethics, Bias, Employment, Insurance, Special Masters and Referees, Intellectual Property, and e-Discovery
  • "Big Cases, Personal Touch," Daily Journal, ADR Profile, May 30, 2014
  • Panelist, JAMS, San Francisco, 1998-present
  • Discovery Referee, San Mateo County Superior Court, 1994-1998
  • Litigation Partner, major San Francisco law firm
  • Mediation Workshop, Harvard Law School Program of Instruction for Lawyers
  • J.D., Golden Gate University School of Law; Editor, Law Review
  • B.A., Mount Holyoke College; Dartmouth College; Honors Commendation

Counsel Comments

    • “Cathy truly cares about the parties and the issues. She does not stop or abandon the case until it settles.”

      -National Settlement Counsel
    • “Cathy knows each case and is persistent and patient with emotionally charged clients.”

      -Bay Area Attorney




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