Since the firm began in 1977, partners have successfully tried major commercial litigation cases resulting in over $1 billion in verdicts, settlements, class action awards and workouts for clients.A. Barry Cappello founded the firm now known as Cappello & Noël in 1977 to bring an indomitable business litigation practice to Santa Barbara.
Until then, significant complex business litigation matters were going to Los Angeles firms. “No one in Santa Barbara was servicing that kind of business, so I decided to build the firm into a litigation powerhouse,” Mr. Cappello explains. He created a large firm litigation department without the large firm overhead. The firm successfully uses a trial team concept to take on big corporations, government entities, banks and insurance companies on behalf of individuals and small businesses.
Its team of partners, associates, of counsel and paralegals has defeated some of the country’s largest law firms and their mega-clients. Cappello & Noël pioneered the field of lender liability. Barry Cappello is the author of Lender Liability (Fifth Edition, Juris Publishing), the authoritative treatise on lender misconduct. The firm successfully prosecutes lending institution misconduct and fraud. It also uses its expertise to negotiate workout agreements between borrowers and lenders. Its record of jury verdicts and settlements exceeds $1 billion. Cappello & Noël has earned a nationwide reputation as the go-to firm when litigating against financial institutions and other large public and private entities. It is known as a fierce competitor when negotiating and at trial.
Philanthropy. Cappello & Noël is very active in supporting community and legal charitable activities. The Legal Aid Foundation of Santa Barbara is one of its financial benefactors. Realizing the foundation’s telephone system was woefully outdated, the firm donated a new, state-of-the-art system. It is a sponsor for the foundation’s annual Chowder Fest. Over the years, the firm has donated more than $100,000 to the foundation as well as made donations to legal, educational and philanthropic organizations including the Boys & Girls Club.
Since 2007, Mr. Cappello has donated $2.75 million to UCLA Law. The A. Barry Cappello Courtroom on the UCLA campus was created and serves as UCLA Law’s primary courtroom where students compete in mock trials, moot courts and simulated trials and gain experience arguing in a realistic courtroom environment. Mr. Cappello is a frequent guest lecturer and spearheads “The Cappello Series: The Art of the Trial,” a twice-annual lecture series in which students gain insight into litigation techniques and strategies from top practitioners. His generosity has also helped transform the school’s trial advocacy program, providing scholarship support and extensive training opportunities for students interested in pursuing careers as trial attorneys.
Mr. Cappello’s donations help fund the law school’s mock trial team, which has now established a national record and reputation as one of the finest programs in the nation. He sits on the school’s Board of Advisors. In 2018, Mr. Cappello was named UCLA School of Law Donor of the Year.In 2016, Ms. Noël personally donated $250,000 to the Marshall-Wythe School of Law at William & Mary to establish an endowment to provide scholarship support for students attending William & Mary Law School. The memorial scholarship endowment is named for one of Ms. Noël’s classmates from William & Mary Law School, and provides need-based scholarships with a preference given to African-American students or students of color.
In 2020, Cappello & Noël was the subject of a Daily Journal article that highlighted the firm’s litigation successes, its case strategies and its passionate commitment to clients. Also in 2020, Mr. Cappello was recognized as one of the Top 100 Lawyers in California by the Daily Journal, California legal newspaper.
Recognition. The firm is listed in the 2020 edition of “Best Law Firms,” published by U.S. News &World Report and Best Lawyers. It received a “Tier 1” ranking in commercial litigation meaning the firm was in the highest percentile of recognized firms.
Firm Practice Areas
- Commercial Litigation
- Litigation - Banking and Finance
- Litigation - Environmental
- Litigation - Labor and Employment
- Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions - Plaintiffs
- Personal Injury Litigation - Plaintiffs