Phil leads and manages large, complex litigation, but Phil also represents smaller corporations and individuals, many of whom are involved in technology and/or early stage companies. Phil’s reputation is that of an aggressive litigator, but an ethical opponent. Phil is most proud of the engagements where Phil has found an original or imaginative approach to a litigation problem that has led to an unexpected and positive resolution. Phil believes that differences in the quality of legal representation between the many good litigators at the top of this field are based on listening to the customer, the application of imagination to legal problems and the willingness to work hard and not delegate the core of that work to others.
Phil’s clients range from Fortune 100 companies to venture funded start-ups. Phil has been trial counsel for matters ranging from cutting edge patent litigation (Motorola v. Microsoft), groundbreaking national antitrust litigation (Caldera v. Microsoft), complex construction litigation (a three-month trial regarding over $110 million of cost overruns during construction of the world's largest radio telescope), the successful defense of class action litigation on behalf of clients ranging from a national airline to a national text advertiser, and for trade secret, products liability and toxic tort cases. Phil obtained summary judgment dismissing a billion dollar patent and trade secret claim against an international corporation and Phil obtained, with a partner firm, a $19 million jury verdict for theft of trade secrets comprising the pointing/scrolling mouse technology.
Phil’s practice has increasingly emphasized corporate financing, control, trade secret, and non-compete litigation. His successful litigation on behalf of an energy sector company in a corporate control battle was detailed in a Seattle Weekly cover feature.
Phil graduated with honors from Dartmouth College and Michigan Law School. He then clerked for and was mentored by a renowned litigator and federal judge seated on the Federal bench in Seattle. Phil moved to Heller Ehrman, leading complex litigation, including class actions, environmental and superfund litigation. In 1997, with others from Heller and leaders from Seattle's best firms, Phil founded Summit Law Group. Summit has a national reputation among in-house counsel, C-level management, and high net worth individuals, as a top-tier litigation firm.
Phil has been consistently rated a "Super Lawyer," including repeat selections as a “Top 100 Washington Super Lawyer.” Benchmark Litigation has annually named Phil as one of approximately 25 Washington State "Litigation Stars,” since the first publication of that list. Phil is AV rated in Martindale Hubble, with a “perfect” score of 5 out of 5 in litigation. Phil is also well connected in the Northwest legal, civic, and venture capital communities.
Microsoft v. Motorola — Numerous patent and contract cases between Microsoft and Motorola (before and after the Google purchase) addressing Microsoft’s patent challenges to the Android operating system.
Kramer v. B2Mobile, et. al.
Represented lead defendant in national class action asserting
violations of federal communications laws by alleged leading commercial texting
company and customers.
Belikov, et al. v. Huhs, et. al.
former Soviet patent commissar and Tetris patent owner against former manager of
companies controlled by him, seeking return of corporate control and looted funds.
CADG v. Vadium Technology, et al.
Securities and business tort lawsuit on behalf of a USA
defense contractor seeking recovery of its investment in a joint venture to
build an encrypted mobile telephone, which was misappropriated by the joint
venture partner, and to recover related damages.
Caldera v. Microsoft
successful private antitrust case against Microsoft, seeking relief for anticompetitive
practices directed at the DR. DOS operating system.
IFT, et al. v. Firebaugh, et al.
shareholders against President and majority owner in widely publicized
corporate control battle that resulted in an award to the
minority shareholders of the control of a groundbreaking pollution reduction technology.