Michael R. Williams is a trial lawyer with twenty years of experience in all aspects of complex business litigation. His main practice areas include insurance coverage and bad faith claims, corporate governance and partnership disputes, contract and business tort claims, trade secret misappropriation, and employment litigation. He has substantial first-chair experience representing plaintiffs and defendants in trials, arbitrations, mediations, and appeals.
Representative matters Mike has handled in recent years include:
- Prosecution of breach of contract and fraud claims on behalf of a group of entrepreneurs and privately-held companies in the automotive accessories business. Mike’s clients won a $55 million judgment following a six-week trial.
- Defense of a prominent estate planning attorney against breach of malpractice, fiduciary duty, fraud, and civil RICO claims. The plaintiffs, members of a wealthy and well-known Southern California family, sought nearly $600 million in damages. On the eve of trial, Mike and the BMK team obtained a full dismissal of all claims against the firm’s client.
- Representation of a federal agency asserting claims against a title insurance company arising out of the 2008 financial crisis. The court granted pre-trial summary judgment in favor of Mike’s client, awarding nearly $6 million in damages.
- Prosecution of insurance coverage and bad faith claims on behalf of two public companies in the semiconductor industry. In each case, Mike and his team obtained summary adjudication on key coverage issues and then negotiated settlements totaling over $5 million on the eve of trial. Mike also has successfully litigated insurance coverage cases for clients in the software, property management, apparel, food products, manufacturing, and real estate development industries.
- Defense of a high-profile Orange County technology entrepreneur against a multi-million dollar breach of contract claim. After obtaining a dismissal of all claims against his client, Mike then obtained an attorneys’ fee award of nearly $1 million against the plaintiff.
- Prosecution of direct and derivative claims on behalf of an LLC member against the LLC’s managers, who had engaged in transactions that unfairly enriched the managers to the tune of millions of dollars. Immediately after filing suit, Mike obtained a court order preventing the defendants from completing imminent transactions, crippling their unlawful scheme. Within days, the defendants agreed to pay Mike’s client a settlement equal to 100% of his multi-million dollar damage claim.
- Defense of a private equity firm and its principals in a series of arbitration and litigation proceedings in which Mike’s clients were alleged to have misappropriated trade secrets and breached fiduciary duties in connection with a $200 million portfolio investment. After defeating the plaintiff’s request for a preliminary injunction and obtaining a series of favorable rulings on key issues, Mike’s clients entered into a highly favorable settlement.
- Defense of one of California’s fastest-growing franchise restaurant chains against trade secret misappropriation claims by its largest competitor. After obtaining highly-damaging admissions during the deposition of the plaintiff’s key witness, Mike negotiated a settlement under which his clients made no out-of-pocket payment and no changes to their business operations.
Mike’s outstanding results for his clients have earned him recognition as one of Orange County’s top attorneys in OC Metro Magazine and a perfect 10 out of 10 rating from Avvo.com.
Throughout his career, Mike has played key leadership roles in the Orange County legal community, including serving as President of the Public Law Center’s Board of Directors in 2012 and 2013 and Chair of the Orange County Bar Association’s Business Litigation Section in 2007. Mike is presently a member of the Board of Directors of the Orange County Bar Foundation, and previously served on the board of the UC Davis School of Law Alumni Association.
Mike graduated in the top 5% of his class from the University of California, Davis School of Law, where he was an Executive Editor of the UC Davis Law Review. Mike received his undergraduate degree in political science from California State University Northridge.
- University of California Davis School of Law J.D., 1997
- California State University Northridge 1994
- Supreme Court of California
- U.S. District Court, Central District of California
- Board of Directors of the Orange County Bar Foundation
- Orange County Bar Association
- Public Law Center, President 2012-13