received his law degree from the University of California, Davis
in 1988. While at Davis, he served as an Editor of the U.C. Davis
graduation, Mr. Birkhaeuser joined the law firm of McCutchen,
Doyle, Brown and Enersen. At the McCutchen firm, he represented
plaintiffs and defendants in a wide variety of complex civil litigation
matters including real estate, bankruptcy and environmental litigation.
In 1991, Mr. Birkhaeuser co-chaired an eight-week trial in Quadrant
Corporation v. First Interstate Bank, Contra Costa County Superior
Court Action No. C90-03855 recovering for his client over $15
million which, at that time, was the largest jury verdict, in
Contra Costa County history.
1992, Mr. Birkhaeuser began to focus his career on class action
litigation at the trial and appellate levels. One such matter,
Harris v. Chase Manhattan Bank, N.A. (1994) 34 Cal. App. 4th 1563,
resulted in a favorable decision, the reasoning of which was affirmed
by the California Supreme Court in a companion case entitled Smiley
v. Citibank (1995) 11 Cal. 4th 138, and ultimately by the United
States Supreme Court in the same case. Smiley v. Citibank (1996)
517 U.S. 735.
joined the firm in 1994 and became a partner in 1997. At the firm,
he has prosecuted class action cases involving insurance, false
nutritional labeling, price fixing and securities fraud. Mr. Birkhaeuser
has held leadership positions in In Re Kansas Vitamin Antitrust
Litigation and In re Wisconsin Vitamin Antitrust Litigation (coordinated
through proceedings in the District of Columbia and consolidated
with parens patriae actions brought by attorneys general in 23
jurisdictions); In Re Polyester Staple Indirect Purchaser Antitrust
Litigation; and In Re DRAM Antitrust Litigation. He has also represented
consumers in represent consumers in antitrust matters alleging
price fixing in the “Flash Memory,” Cathode Ray Tube,
Automobile, and Paper industries.
has received Martindale-Hubble's highest rating of AV. He serves
on the Board of Directors of the Warren Eukel Teacher Trust and
the Contra Costa County Food From the Bar Committee. He has also
served as a judge pro tem in the Contra Costa Superior Court.
Warmerdam v. Honey Hill Farms (arbitration) Honorable William
Boone, presiding. Lead counsel in complex contract dispute resulting
in verdict in client’s favor on complaint and cross-complaint.
Land Company v. Landmark Vineyards, Ltd, et. al., First Appellate
District No. AO43692. Lead counsel for defendants and respondents
in case that settled favorably after the filing of Respondents’
brief on appeal.
Communications, Inc. v. City of Walnut Creek, 52 Cal. 3d 531 (1991).
Landmark decision under California Environmental Quality Act addressing
City’s ability to amend general plan by voter initiative.
v. General Motors, Inc., 92 Cal. App. 4th 385 (2001). Important
decision defining scope of covenant of good faith and fair dealing
and reasonableness of fee award after class action trial against
Weider Nutrition Group, Inc., 275 A.D.2d 607, 712 N.Y.S. 2d 551
(1st Dept. 2000). Case of first impression holding that the Nutritional
Labeling and Education Act did not preempt plaintiffs claims for
false nutritional labeling.
Sharper Image Corp., 517 F. Supp. 2d 1292 (S.D. Fla. 2007)Lead
counsel for objector/class member in state court action who, joined
by attorneys general from 35 states, successfully defeated settlement
of later-filed federal action on the ground that the settlement