David A. Battaglia is a partner in the Los Angeles office of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP, having joined the firm in 1987. A senior member of the firm’s Litigation Department, Mr. Battaglia has extensive and successful first-chair trial experience in business cases in federal and state courts, and in arbitration, with a principal focus on complex matters (see list below). He has prevailed on behalf of both plaintiffs and defendants. He has been named one of the “Best Lawyers in America,” and is a Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America. He is the immediate Past President of the Board of Governors of the Association of Business Trial Lawyers in Los Angeles (over 1,500 members), consistently has been chosen as a “Super Lawyer” in southern California since 2005, and has served on the Executive Committee of the Litigation Section of the Los Angeles County Bar Association. He was elected as a member of the Chancery Club in 2015.
Mr. Battaglia has substantial and diverse industry and subject matter experience. He has been the lead litigator in numerous corporate control contests and hostile takeovers, related securities litigation, and DOJ, SEC, and state government investigations. He successfully has tried and managed consumer mass and class actions, for-profit education disputes, entertainment litigation, and eminent domain and other real estate matters. The breadth of his practice also includes matters in the fields of energy and natural resources and defense contracting and infrastructure.
A sample of clients he is representing and has represented include Motorcar Parts of America Inc., Sempra Energy, Parsons Corp., General Growth Properties Inc., J. H. Whitney Capital Partners, Emulex Corp., Computer Sciences Corp., Farmers Insurance Exchange, Tiffany & Co., ITT Educational Services Inc., International Education Corp., CBS Inc., Sony Music Entertainment Inc., Fox Sports, Southern California Gas Co., San Diego Gas & Electric Co., AGL Resources Inc., General Electric, Encana Corp., Raytheon, Hughes Missile Systems Co., National Crane, K2 Industries Inc., Spark Networks, UberMedia, Peoplesoft Corp., Metromedia Inc., and Pinnacle Entertainment Inc.
He has been admitted to practice in the U.S. Supreme Court; federal courts of appeal for the Fourth, Fifth, Ninth and D.C. Circuits; federal district courts in California, the District of Columbia, Florida, New York, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands; and all courts in the State of California and in Washington, D.C.
Mr. Battaglia is a graduate of Georgetown University with honors, and a double major in English and Government. He earned his law degree in 1987 at the University of California, Berkeley, Boalt Hall School of Law. Prior to joining Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, Mr. Battaglia worked for a member of Congress in Washington, D.C.
He currently is on the Board of Directors of the Girl Scouts of Greater Los Angeles, which serves 40,000 girls and young women annually. He also served on the Board of Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services, Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to mental health which helps 9,000 children annually in the Los Angeles area. He and his wife Julie live in La Cañada Flintridge, California.
Representative jury trials, non-jury trials, arbitrations, and appellate experience are described in more detail below.
Representative Trials and Arbitrations
- J. H. Whitney Capital Partners v. Seller (2013): Co-lead trial counsel for one of the oldest private equity firms in the nation, J.H. Whitney, in a six-week AAA arbitration before the Honorable Carlos Moreno, retired California Supreme Court Justice and current U.S. Ambassador. Client was pleased with the representation. Opposing party and arbitration award is confidential under AAA rules.
- Schultz v. Douglas Steel Supply Co. (2013): Lead trial counsel for the plaintiff in a six-week court trial in Los Angeles County Superior Court involving claims for involuntary dissolution of a corporation, breach of fiduciary duty, conversion, and an accounting. Case favorably settled after closing argument.
- Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority v. General Growth Properties, Inc. (2012 and 2014): Lead trial counsel in an eminent domain case in Santa Clara County Superior Court representing the second largest mall owner in the nation. The court permitted the right to take, but the case was settled favorably in 2014 on the eve of a jury trial on the issue of just compensation.
- Mother v. Father (2012): Lead trial counsel for a mother of three children in a domestic abuse action pro bono publico in Los Angeles County Superior Court. After a three day trial, the court found in favor of our client, granted a permanent protective order against the father, and awarded sole physical and legal custody of the children to the mother, subject to periodic visitation.
- Southern California Gas Company v. City of Alhambra (2011): Lead counsel on behalf of the public utility in federal court in Los Angeles in an action to set aside a municipal ordinance as violative of the Contracts Clause of the U.S. Constitution. Judgment was obtained for our client.
- Fiber Technology Corp. v. Parsons Infrastructure and Technology, Inc. (2009): Lead trial counsel for Parsons in a five-week jury trial in Los Angeles County Superior Court involving contract disputes over Iraq reconstruction efforts. Jury verdict obtained in favor of our client.
- ITT Educational Services, Inc. (2008): Lead counsel in six arbitrations before different former judges and experienced AAA arbitrators in Houston, Texas involving claims for fraud, negligence, breach of contract, deceptive trade practices, and education code violations. The arbitrations lasted between five weeks and two days. Client was pleased with the representation. Opposing parties and results are confidential under AAA rules.
- Caruso Affiliated Holdings, LLC v. General Growth Properties, Inc. (2007): Co-lead trial counsel for General Growth in a seven-week jury trial in Los Angeles County Superior Court involving claims for antitrust violations, tortious interference, and unfair competition arising from alleged contacts with potential tenants of a competing shopping mall. The antitrust and unfair competition claims against our client were dismissed at trial, and the remaining claim was settled after a jury verdict.
- Holiday Partnerships v. Shelter Management Corp. (2007): Lead counsel for Shelter Management in fraud, receivership, and partnership dissolution proceedings in Los Angeles County Superior Court involving twenty multi-family dwellings. Successfully opposed injunctive relief and the appointment of a receiver, and the matter thereafter was favorably resolved.
- Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands v. Carlsmith Ball LLP (2003): Co-lead counsel for defendant in the U.S. District Court for the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands in Saipan and in Los Angeles County Superior Court. Obtained declaratory and injunctive relief on behalf of our client, and the Commonwealth subsequently dismissed its claims.
- Southern California Gas Company v. City of Santa Ana (2002): Lead counsel on behalf of the public utility in federal court in Los Angeles in an action to set aside a municipal ordinance as violative of the Contracts Clause of the U.S. Constitution. Judgment was obtained for our client.
- Sunclipse Inc. v. Dell (2000): Lead counsel for Sunclipse in a Los Angeles Superior Court proceeding seeking injunctive relief for misappropriation of trade secrets. Judgment was obtained for our client.
- Arakelian v. North’s Bakery, Inc. (1999): Lead counsel for defendant in an arbitration in a breach of contract and tortious interference action involving a buyout agreement. A decision was rendered for our client.
- Carter v. Loxley Public Company (1997): Co-lead counsel in a two-month jury trial in San Francisco County Superior Court for plaintiffs in a dispute alleging wrongful termination and breach of contract. Jury verdict was issued in favor of one plaintiff and against the other.
- Weber v. Fidelity Federal Bank (1996): Lead trial lawyer in Los Angeles County Superior Court for Fidelity Federal Bank involving claims by 40 plaintiffs that the bank miscalculated interest on adjustable rate mortgages. Decision for our client was obtained on all claims.
- MobilWorks v. L.A. Cellular Telephone Company (1996): Lead counsel for L.A. Cellular in an arbitration challenging its exclusive distribution agreement as unenforceable and an unreasonable restraint of trade. Decision was rendered for our client.
- Yamahata v. Tiffany & Company (1995): Co-lead trial counsel for Tiffany in a month long jury trial in Los Angeles County Superior Court involving wrongful termination claims and gray market activities. Decision was obtained for our client.
- Chaltiel v. Abbey Healthcare, Inc. (1994): Co-lead counsel for the plaintiff in a wrongful termination, breach of contract and fraud dispute. The matter was resolved favorably after a
two-month AAA arbitration.
- Strong v. Coutin (1993): Lead trial counsel in a bench trial in Los Angeles County Superior Court involving rights to easements and improvements, as well as the abatement of nuisances. Decision was obtained for our client.
- Adrabi v. Rozillio (1993): Lead trial counsel for defendant in a real estate fraud dispute in Los Angeles County Superior Court. The matter settled favorably during trial.
Representative Appellate Experience
- ITT Educational Services, Inc. v. Arce, 533 F.3d 342 (5th Cir. 2008). Lead counsel in a precedential decision in favor of our client ITT Tech holding that a confidentiality clause in an arbitration agreement is fully enforceable and prevents disclosure of evidence or the result in subsequent proceedings.
- California Farm Bureau Federation v. California State Water Resources Control Board, 146 Cal. App. 4th 1126 (2007) (rev. granted). Co-lead counsel in a groundbreaking decision in favor of our client that the implementation of a state statute imposing water rights “fees” on a broad class of California citizens violates Proposition 13’s bar against new state taxes.
- Southern California Gas Company v. City of Santa Ana, 336 F.3d 385 (9th Cir. 2003). Lead counsel in a decision with nationwide implications, where the court affirmed our client’s position that a municipal ordinance imposing new fees in addition to those paid under a franchise agreement violates the Contracts Clause of U.S. Constitution.
- Lockheed Martin Corp. v. Superior Court, 109 Cal. App. 4th 24 (2003) (rev. granted, rev. dismissed and superseded by statute). Co-lead counsel in a decision where the court held that news publicity was sufficient to commence the running of the statute of limitations in an “Erin Brockovich” toxic tort action.
- Adaptive Power Solutions v. Hughes Missile Systems Co., 141 F.3d 947 (9th Cir. 1998). Co-lead counsel in an oft-cited decision that affirms that injury to competition is required to demonstrate an antitrust violation.
- Engel v. CBS, Inc., 981 F.2d 1076 (9th Cir. 1992). Lead counsel in a decision for CBS, Inc. that applies conflict of law principles and mandates that the law of New York should govern a malicious prosecution dispute, resulting in our clients ultimately prevailing.