Over 40 years of Appellate
Experience in the
California Courts of Appeal
and the United States
Court of Appeals.

By limiting his practice in both size and subject matter, Mr. Faber provides his clients highly personalized service along with his considerable experience and expertise.

In his over 40 years of practice, Michael J. Faber has acquired significant experience, and enjoyed significant success, in both trial and appellate courts.

In 2021, Mr. Faber won a jury verdict of nearly $1.4 million against the California Department of Developmental Services on behalf of the former Chief Executive Officer of the Kern Regional Center, Duane Law, for intentionally interfering with Mr. Law’s employment contract with KRC. The verdict came after nearly six years of litigation during which Mr. Faber defeated the State’s anti-SLAPP motion to dismiss the case, defeated the State’s appeal of the denial of that motion, and defeated the State’s Motion for Summary Judgment. On the eve of trial, the State made a “last, best, and final” offer of settlement in the sum of $90,000. The trial, in Sacramento Superior Court, lasted over a month before the jury returned its verdict of nearly $1.4 million in favor of Mr. Faber’s client. [Law v. Dept. of Developmental Services, Sacramento Superior Court Case No. 34-2016-00194451.]

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In 2020, in a case that took nearly two years to litigate, and against one of the largest and most prominent California law firms, Mr. Faber won a judgment of more than $950,000 against the Los Angeles County Fair Association. Mr. Faber’s client, the Fair’s former head of food and beverage, was falsely accused by the Fair’s Chief Executive Officer of stealing two cases of wine. Mr. Faber not only proved the accusation was false, but, overcoming numerous legal obstacles, successfully held the Fair liable for defamation. The sizeable award included damages for lost earnings, emotional distress, and punitive damages. [Teig v. Los Angeles County Fair Association, Los Angeles Superior Court Case No. BC 715433.]

In 2018, in a hotly contested legal malpractice action, Mr. Faber represented clients against their former defense attorneys, a national law firm. After three days of trial, the law firm settled for over $3 million.

In 2016 and 2017, Mr. Faber successfully litigated a sexual harassment case in which his client fended off the advances of a company’s senior executive. Despite four national law firms arrayed against him, he negotiated a pre-trial settlement in excess of $4 million.

Recently, Mr. Faber also prevailed in two significant appellate matters. In one, he persuaded the 4th District Court of Appeal in Santa Ana to deny an employer’s attempt to force a cancer discrimination case into arbitration, ordering instead that Mr. Faber’s client was entitled to a jury trial. That decision quickly led to a favorable settlement. In the other matter, in which Mr. Faber sued the State of California on behalf of the former Chief Executive Officer of the Kern Regional Center, he successfully defended against the government’s anti-SLAPP motion, a victory which was upheld by the Court of Appeal in Sacramento. [Law v. Department of Developmental Services; 3rd DCA Case No. C084499.]

Among Mr. Faber’s other appellate victories are the following:

  • In this case, the court affirmed an order granting a new trial in favor of Mr. Faber’s client following a six-week jury trial marred by juror misconduct during deliberations.  Mr. Faber’s client, Ready Pac’s Vice President of Human Resources, was fired after complaining that the company’s President was unlawfully classified as an independent contractor rather than an employee.  Although the plaintiff initially lost at trial, Mr. Faber persevered against one of the largest law firms in the country and persuaded the trial court to grant a new trial based on the jury’s improper consideration of the so-called “at-will employment” doctrine.  The defendant appealed to the new trial order, but Mr. Faber again prevailed in the Court of Appeal.  The case was then resolved on confidential terms.

  • In D’Sa v. Playhut, Inc. 85 Cal.App.4th 927 (2000), the holding found that it was unlawful to fire an employee for refusing to sign an agreement that contained a non-compete clause. This precedent-setting decision added a significant measure of protection for California employees.

  • In Beaty v. BET Holdings, Inc. 222 F.3d 607 (9th Cir. 2000), the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reaffirmed the availability of attorney fees in discrimination cases of modest value, thereby enabling victims of discrimination to secure competent counsel to vindicate their rights.

  • In Burton v. Ralph’s Food 4 Less, E029789 (Court of Appeal, State of California, 4th Appellate District—unpublished), the court held that it was unlawful to fire a worker in retaliation for reopening a dormant worker’s compensation case, and that he could pursue his claims in a civil jury trial seeking damages for emotional distress and punitive damages, in addition to loss of earnings.

  • In Dawson v. Aerospace Corp., B117639 (Court of Appeal, State of California, 2d Appellate District—unpublished), the court affirmed a substantial jury verdict, including punitive damages, won by Mr. Faber for his client, an aerospace engineer laid off in a reduction in force necessitated by adverse business conditions. Mr. Faber successfully argued that circumstantial evidence indicated that plaintiff had been selected for the layoff list, at least in small measure, due to his age. The court held that was sufficient to sustain the jury’s finding of unlawful discrimination.

Other appellate victories include:

Mr. Faber’s considerable trial experience includes well more than 40 jury trials, together with numerous bench trials and arbitrations. The following are a few examples of his trials over the past several years: