Michael A. Kelly - Walkup, Melodia, Kelly & Schoenberger

Michael A. Kelly

Listed in Best Lawyers since 1995
Phone: 415-617-1238


Mr. Kelly continues to be at the forefront of personal injury litigation both locally and nationally.  Selected by the members of California's 7 ABOTA chapters as the 2014 Cal-ABOTA Trial Lawyer of the Year, he prosecutes a wide range of single plaintiff and mass actions. In 2015 he obtained a record breaking verdict in a Kaiser Health Plan arbitration claim and his March 2013 verdict in the first DePuy ASR /Johnson and Johnson trial set the stage for a national $2.5 Billion settlement in the metal-on metal artificial hip implant litigation. A year earlier he obtained an $8,350,000 verdict on behalf of a construction-site worker who lost an arm in a fall from a defective man-lift.  A member of the prestigious Inner Circle of Advocates, Mr. Kelly was selected by SuperLawyers Magazine as one of the Top Ten lawyers in Northern California for the fifth consecutive year.  His practice includes prosecution of medical device, catastrophic injury, wrongful death, medical negligence, product liability and government liability claims. He represents clients both in and out of California.  He has been honored by the Consumer Attorneys of California with the Robert E. Cartright award, given to a member of the Association for contributions to the teaching Trial Advocacy.  In 2011 he was honored by the National Institute of Trial Advocacy with the prestigious Robert Oliphant Award, recognizing his pro bono contributions to advocacy teaching.  In 2010 he was voted by the members of the San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association as "Trial Lawyer of the Year."  One year earlier he was chosen by the readers of San Francisco's Recorder legal newspaper as the "Best Personal Injury Attorney" in San Francisco. At various times he has held or shared the record for the highest verdict amount in particular case types in San Francisco, Sacramento, Santa Clara and Sonoma Counties. His $23,200,000 jury verdict in a medical negligence case in Minnesota in 2010 ranks among the nation's largest verdicts ever for obstetrical injury. He has been listed as among the “Best Lawyers” in America for 20 consecutive years. He holds an “AV” rating (highest rating) from Martindale-Hubbell, and has been favorably profiled in numerous legal periodicals. During his career he has been involved in more than 175 cases where his client recovered $1,000,000 or more by way of trial, arbitration, mediation or settlement.   He has been recognized by his peers by election to the most selective and prestigious legal honorary societies including the American College of Trial Lawyers, the International Society of Barristers (for whom he served as President in 2012-2013), and the International Academy of Trial Lawyers.  He has served on the National Board of ABOTA, the governing board of NITA, the National Foundation Board for ABOTA, and the governing boards of numerous charities.   His commitment to continuing legal education and pro-bono work is widely known and has been recognized by multiple Bar Associations. During his career he has served as an invited speaker at more than 150 continuing education seminars for attorneys across the country (and outside the United States) on subjects ranging from civil trial practice to cross-examination, evidence, opening statement and final argument. Between 2008 and 2010, he traveled on three occasions to Japan (Tokyo, Osaka) to assist in the training of Japanese trial lawyers involved in Japan's Saiban-in jury trial system. He has taught litigation advocacy courses in England, Ireland, Scotland and Eastern Europe. He served for ten years as the director of teacher training programs for the National Institute of Trial Advocacy. He lectures regularly for the California Continuing Education of the Bar (CEB), The Rutter Group, CAOC, ABOTA and SFTLA.   Mr. Kelly graduated summa cum laude from St. Mary's College of California in 1973. He obtained his law degree from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law in 1976. Since 1978 his work has been exclusively in the area of complex plaintiff’s personal injury claims.

St. Mary's College of CaliforniaBA 1973University of California, Hastings College of LawJ.D. 1976
ABOTAAmerican College of Trial LawyersInternational Academy of Trial LawyersInternational Society of Barristers

Office Location

650 California Street, 26th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94108
United States


Lawyer of the Year Awards

2017 Lawyer of the Year in Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions - Plaintiffs of the San Francisco Metro Area
Michael A. Kelly has earned a Lawyer of the Year award for 2017!

Practice Areas

Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions - Plaintiffs
Personal Injury Litigation - Plaintiffs (Medical Malpractice, Product Liability, Wrongful Death)