Mary-Christine "M.C." Sungaila

Mary-Christine "M.C." Sungaila

Complex Appellate Litigation Group LLP

Recognized since 2010

Newport Beach, California

Practice Areas

Appellate Practice

Lawyer of the Year Badge - 2021 - Appellate Practice Lawyer of the Year Badge - 2018 - Appellate Practice Lawyer of the Year Badge - 2015 - Appellate Practice
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Ms. Sungaila’s appellate work, which focuses on complex tort cases raising cutting-edge issues, has helped define the scope of the duty to warn sophisticated users of product hazards, set the guidelines for admitting expert testimony at trial, and overturned multimillion dollar judgments.

Ms. Sungaila has also consistently helped secure important rights for women and girls internationally, nationally, and throughout California. Ms. Sungaila has been pro bono counsel of record for amici in, or consulted on, over 17 women’s and civil rights cases before the United States Supreme Court (see, e.g., United States v. Lanier (1997) 117 S.Ct. 1219; Davis v. Monroe County Board of Education (1999) 526 U.S. 629), the Inter-American Commission, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, and the California Supreme Court and Courts of Appeal.

She has contributed to and consulted on two CEB treatises on California writ practice. Her various articles on effective amicus briefing, appellate brief writing, and gender issues have been cited in over 25 law review articles, treatises, and blogs. Ms. Sungaila has also contributed posts as an invited guest blogger on the ABA Top 100 Blawg site IntLawGrrls and as the first West Coast guest blogger for the Toxic Tort Litigation Blog.

She has received multiple awards and recognition for her work, including listings in the Best Lawyers of America (2010) and the Top 50 Southern California Female Super Lawyers (2008 through 2010). She has been named one of California’s Top 75 women litigators by the Los Angeles and San Francisco Daily Journal and one of the Top 25 lawyers in the Valley by the San Fernando Valley Business Journal. She has been profiled in the Los Angeles Times, National Law Journal, Stanford Magazine, and the Stanford Professional Women of Los Angeles Newsletter. Her expert commentary has appeared in a variety of publications ranging from the ABA Journal and National Law Journal to the Los Angeles Times and USA Today.

Prior to joining Horvitz & Levy, Ms. Sungaila was a Litigation Associate with Irell & Manella, and held judicial clerkships with the Hon. Ferdinand F. Fernandez, U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, and the Hon. Alicemarie H. Stotler, U.S. District Court, Central District of California. She received her Bachelor of Arts with multiple honors from Stanford University and her Juris Doctor from the University of California at Los Angeles.

Contact & Links
  • 620 Newport Center Drive, Suite 1100
    Newport Beach, CA 92660
  • University of California - Los Angeles, graduated 1991
  • Stanford University, graduated 1988
Bar Admissions
  • California, The State Bar of California
  • Women Lawyers Assn of LA - Board Member and Chair, Amicus Briefs (2000-2009)
  • International Association of Defense Counsel - Vice-Chair, Appellate Practice Committee; Chair, Amicus Briefs
Federal Clerkships
  • United States Court of Appeals
  • United States District Court

Lawyer of the Year Badge - 2021 - Appellate Practice Lawyer of the Year Badge - 2018 - Appellate Practice Lawyer of the Year Badge - 2015 - Appellate Practice
Named "Lawyer of the Year" by Best Lawyers® for:
  • Appellate Practice, Orange County (2021)
  • Appellate Practice, Orange County (2018)
  • Appellate Practice, Orange County (2015)
Recognized in The Best Lawyers® in America 2023 for work in:
  • Appellate Practice
Special Focus:
  • Litigation
  • Top 75 Women Litigators in California (Daily Journal newspaper, 2005)
Additional Areas of Practice:
  • Commercial Litigation

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