Audrey Walton-Hadlock’s practice spans a wide range of complex civil litigation matters, including intellectual property, breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty and fraud. Her compelling written work and creative analysis of challenging legal issues have helped secure victories for her clients in trial and appellate courts.
Ms. Walton-Hadlock has been an active member of a number of trial teams and has tried several cases to verdict as first chair. She has represented individuals and companies in such industries as software and Internet services, doll and video game design, cable communications and the legal profession. Ms. Walton-Hadlock has also successfully represented individuals pro bono in immigration, employment and other matters, as well as a group of religious organizations as amici curiae in a religious freedom case before the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Cases of Note
Venture-Backed Biotechnology Company v. Pharmaceutical Company: We represented a biotechnology company developing a drug for a rare genetic disease in arbitration proceedings over its rights to develop its sole product under a collaboration agreement with a large pharmaceutical company. With our assistance, on the first day of the arbitration the parties reached a favorable settlement, which provided for our client’s acquisition of the life-saving drug it is developing. The FDA is now considering the NDA for the drug and our client successfully conducted an IPO.
Technology Company v. Internet Search Engine: We defended a leading Internet search engine in a high-stakes binding arbitration. The founders of a company acquired by our client alleged our client breached the merger agreement, and sought hundreds of millions in earn-out compensation. A three-judge panel found in favor of our client on all counts.
Plaintiffs v. Real Estate Investors: We defended certain real estate investors against alter ego claims, in both state and federal court. These alter ego claims were brought in an effort to hold our clients personally liable for a $7.5 million judgment against their company and to pierce the corporate veil protecting our client's real estate investment firm. Following a multi-week bench trial, the court entered judgment for our clients and awarded them attorneys' fees.
Patent Holding Company v. Law Firm: A patent-holding company alleged our client, a prominent national law firm, misappropriated trade secrets. The company claimed our client violated various court protective orders and interfered with settlement obligations. In less than three months, we obtained a dismissal of all claims.
Plaintiff v. Chevron: We won a $5.5 million jury verdict against Chevron for wrongfully terminating and retaliating against a female petroleum engineer. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit affirmed the award.
Toy Company v. Product Designer: We represented the designer of a very popular line of dolls in a federal trial to determine which toy company owns the doll's copyright. We settled the case on favorable terms before the commencement of trial.
AWARDS AND HONORS
American Jurisprudence Awards in Intellectual Property, Land Use Planning and Torts
Prosser Awards in Property, Constitutional Law II and State and Local Government
Order of the Coif, UC Berkeley School of Law
Member, California Law Review, UC Berkeley School of Law
Associate editor, Ecology Law Quarterly, UC Berkeley School of Law
Phi Beta Kappa, Swarthmore College
Member, Edward J. McFetridge American Inn of Court
Co-author, “Best Practices For Successful Collaboration,” Life Science Leader, 2012
“Second Circuit Limits State power to Regulate Sulfur Dioxide Emissions: Clean Air Markets Group v. Pataki,” Ecology Law Quarterly, 2004