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Pillsbury Pillsbury Pillsbury
San Diego
501 West Broadway
Suite 1100
San Diego, CA 92101-3575
Tel. +1.619.544.3204
Fax. +1.619.236.1995
State of California
J.D., Boston College Law School, 1998
cum laude
B.A., Economics, University of California, Davis, 1995


Brian D. Martin

Brian D. Martin

Brian Martin is the local Litigation practice leader for the law firm’s San Diego office. He represents financial institutions and financial services companies in complex class actions; energy companies in environmental remediation litigation, as well as environmental, health and safety regulatory investigations; and other diverse companies, ranging from construction, pharmacy benefits, and government contracting, to high-tech, legal, and biological sciences, in large-scale business litigation. The scope of his representation includes advising on complex business issues involving private equity financings, attorney fee awards, open source licensing, foreign distributorships, gift cards, real estate leasing, insurance licensing, banking regulation and practices, insurance coverage, contamination, and major industrial accidents and process safety incidents.

Mr. Martin also has unique experience representing private companies and their stakeholders in disputes with founding and minority shareholders over ownership, management, and other corporate governance issues. These matters often involve disputes regarding wrongful employment termination, breach of shareholder and officer fiduciary obligations, trade secret misappropriation, access to corporate records, dissenter’s rights, and fraud.

Mr. Martin has represented clients in appeals before the California Courts of Appeal, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and the Nevada Supreme Court. Mr. Martin’s appellate experience includes his representation of a financial institution in the First District Court of Appeal for the State of California, that resulted in the published opinion, Thayer v. Wells Fargo Bank (2001) 92 Cal. App. 4th 819, establishing the parameters of the trial court’s discretion in awarding attorney fees under California’s Private Attorney General doctrine.

Mr. Martin served as a legal extern in the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office, Government division, during law school.

Representative Matters
Financial Services Litigation
  • Defended a national bank in connection with a putative class action regarding ATM deposits. Successfully compelled certain class representatives to individual arbitration and obtained summary judgment as to the remaining class representative.  The judgment was affirmed on appeal.
  • Defended a national bank in connection with a class action regarding banking practices in connection with point-of-sale transactions.
  • Co-represented an insurance company in a class action involving the sale and marketing of certain insurance products.
  • Defended a national bank in connection with a series of representative actions regarding checking account fees.
  • Represented a financial services company institution in connection with a dispute with one of its contracting parties regarding certain regulatory investigations.
  • Represented the subsidiary of a national bank in arbitration with one of its agricultural borrowers regarding a defaulted series of loans and allegations of fraud and tortious interference.

Energy and Environmental Litigation
  • Represented an energy company in Chemical Safety Board, state Occupational Safety and Health Administration and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency investigations into a fire at an oil refinery.
  • Defended an energy company in connection with environmental contamination and remediation obligations at a historical tank storage facility site.
  • Defended energy companies in connection with environmental contamination and remediation obligations at former service station sites.
  • Defended an energy company in a state court jury trial over environmental contamination.
  • Defended an energy company in connection with environmental contamination and remediation obligations at a current service station site.
  • Defended an energy company against a local redevelopment agency in connection with environmental contamination and remediation obligations under the Polanco Redevelopment Act.

Private Company Stakeholder Disputes
  • Represented a specialty subcontractor and one of its principal stakeholders in a dispute with certain minority stakeholders regarding claims of fraud and breach of fiduciary duty in connection with certain merger transactions, real estate options, and allegations of trade secret misappropriation.
  • Defended an international law firm accused of conspiracy and breach of fiduciary duty in connection with certain “down-round” financings.  Won a non-suit motion dismissing the client after three weeks of a jury trial and obtained an affirmance on appeal.
  • Represented a medical device company against one of its former founding shareholders and officers in connection with claims of breach of fiduciary duty in connection with certain “down-round” financings.

Complex Business Litigation
  • Represented a specialty subcontractor in an insurance coverage dispute.
  • Represented a defense contractor in connection with a dispute with one of its subcontractors.
  • Represented an air cargo carrier in a dispute regarding damage to one of its planes.
  • Represented a settlement trust in connection with a dispute with the trust’s remediation contractor and subsequent lien foreclosure actions.
  • Defended a company in connection with a dispute regarding the sale of a product line involving open sourced licensed material.
  • Defended a biopesticide company in arbitration with a licensee/distributor in the United Arab Emirates.
  • Defended pharmacy benefits managers in a representative matter under California’s unfair competition law regarding certain alleged industry practices.
  • Defended a pharmacy benefit manager in connection with a class action regarding reimbursement practices to certain medical providers.
  • Defended a national retailer in connection with a representative action regarding gift card products.

Pro Bono
  • Co-represented an at-risk youth boxing gym in a 5-day bench trial in a challenge to the designation of certain real property as “blighted” for eminent domain purposes.  The challenge was successful and is currently on appeal.
  • Represented a death row inmate in a bench trial in Las Vegas as part of a post-conviction Habeas Corpus proceeding. The death penalty was subsequently reversed upon appeal.

Honors & Awards
  • Super Lawyers (2013)

California Bar Association, American Bar Association, San Diego County Bar Association, Association of Business Trial Lawyers, American Inns of Court, Louis Welsh Chapter, J. Clifford Wallace Chapter

Member of the Board of Governors for the San Diego Chapter of the Association of Business Trial Lawyers


State Courts of California, U.S. District Court for the Southern, Central, Northern and Eastern Districts of California, Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals

Published decisions
  • Beeman v. Antham Prescription Management, LLC (9th Cir. 2011) 661 F.3d 1199
  • Brack v. Omni Loan Co, Ltd. (4th DCA, 2008) 164 Cal. App. 4th 1312
  • Beeman v. TDI Managed Care Services, Inc. (9th Cir., 2006) 449 F. 3d 1035
  • Smith v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. (4th DCA, 2005) 135 Cal. App. 4th 1463
  • Thayer v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. (1st DCA, 2001) 92 Cal. App. 4th 819
  • Community Youth Athletic Center v. City of National City  — Cal.Rptr.3d —, 2013 WL 5823767 (Cal.App. 4 Dist.), 13 Cal. Daily Op. Serv. 12,048

Reported decisions
  • McLay v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. (4th DCA) 2013 WL 1223649
  • Somo v. Chevron Products, U.S.A. (4th DCA, 2008) 2008 WL 4152962
  • Sagi v. Infinity Capital, LLC (4th DCA, 2005) 2005 WL 383711
  • Thayer v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. (1st DCA, 2005) 2005 WL 1847174
  • D.B. Mexican Franchising, LLC v. Cue (S.D. Cal.) 2012 WL 253189
  • Iorio v. Allianz Life Ins. Co. of North America (S.D. Cal.) 2009 WL 3415703
  • Iorio v. Allianz Life Ins. Co. of North America (S.D. Cal.) 2009 WL 3415689
  • Banc of America Strategic Solutions, Inc. v. Mohamed (S.D. Cal.) 2008 WL 2746602
  • Iorio v. Allianz Life Ins. Co. of North America (S.D. Cal.) 2008 WL 8929013
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