Bar Admissions

  • California
  • Pennsylvania (inactive)
  • New Jersey (inactive)


  • J.D., cum laude, University of Pennsylvania Law School, 1999
    Keedy Cup Moot Court Finalist

    Executive Articles Editor, Journal of Constitutional Law
  • B.A., San Francisco State University, 1996
    Dean’s List, 1996
  • Butler University, 1989
    Debate Scholarship

    Dean’s List

    Judicial Council

Judicial Clerkships

  • Honorable Peter G. Verniero, New Jersey Supreme Court, 1999 - 2000
T +1 415.653.3707
F +1 415.653.3755

Thomas E. Wallerstein


Tom Wallerstein is a well-known Bay Area commercial litigator and partner in Venable's Litigation Group with over 18 years of private practice experience. Tom’s practice focuses on high-stakes litigation, including complex commercial litigation; trade secrets, non-competes and other employment litigation; intellectual property disputes; partnership disputes and defending against consumer class actions, products liability and mass torts. He routinely appears in court and has first-chair trial experience in state and federal courts in California, Delaware and elsewhere.

Tom began his career in Philadelphia working on a wide variety of high-profile litigation matters, including representing two Philadelphia mayors and trying a federal jury trial. He later joined a global litigation firm where he gained effusive praise for his courtroom skills, and served as the lead associate on a variety of cases where the amount at stake reached into the tens of millions of dollars. Before joining Venable, Tom also was the founding and managing partner of a Silicon Valley litigation boutique.

A cum laude graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School, Tom served as the Executive Articles Editor of the Journal of Constitutional Law and was a finalist in the school’s moot court competition. In that capacity Tom competed in an oral argument before U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito (then on the Third Circuit Court of Appeals), Ninth Circuit Judge A. Wallace Tashima, and New Jersey Supreme Court Chief Justice Deborah Poritz. Based on his performance, Tom was invited to serve as the first judicial law clerk for New Jersey Supreme Court Justice Peter G. Verniero.

Representative Matters

Trade Secrets and Employment Litigation
  • Obtained a dismissal with prejudice of trade secret misappropriation and related claims in excess of $50 million on behalf of an Italian software company in federal court.
  • Represented a defendant in federal court who settled for no payment after defending against claims for over $200 million brought under the Defend Trade Secrets Act.
  • Obtained dismissal with prejudice of claims against an individual brought against the Defend the Trade Secrets Act resulting in one of the first published opinions on the ex parte seizure provision of that Act.
  • Represented a computer hardware manufacturer in several "bet-the-company" suits alleging misappropriation of trade secrets and unfair competition. Obtained a complete dismissal of the suit and settlement of all claims after engaging in extensive discovery and filing of an antitrust cross-complaint.
  • Represented a pet products company and its CEO in trade secret litigation. Obtained a complete dismissal of the suit and favorable confidential settlement of all claims.
  • In separate matters, represented various companies (including a computer hardware manufacturer, software startups, a national consumer goods retailer and others) accused of wrongful termination, discrimination and/or retaliation.
  • Represented the world’s largest manufacturer of surgical robots and obtained an injunction prohibiting the enforcement of an out-of-state non-compete agreement; successfully defended against claims of trade secret misappropriation.
  • Obtained dismissal of wrongful termination and First Amendment claims against Philadelphia’s Mayor and Chief of Staff relating to the termination of a high-level official.

General and Complex Commercial Litigation
  • Currently litigating a $40 million contract claim in California Superior Court.
  • Successfully represented an industry association in an antitrust matter in federal court.
  • Successfully represented the principals of a pharmaceutical company defending against claims of breach of fiduciary duty in which the amount at stake reached into the hundreds of millions.
  • Obtained a favorable settlement on behalf of a computer software and hardware manufacturer in a $14 million contract dispute regarding the development and production of advanced, customized software.
  • Successfully represented software manufacturer in copyright and related claims brought in federal court by one of the world’s largest social media companies.
  • Obtained favorable settlements and dismissals in the representation of the City of Philadelphia, its Mayor and Chief of Police in numerous cases arising from the arrest of protestors during the 2000 Republican National Convention.
  • Currently representing pet products company defending against various claims of trademark and patent infringement brought by competitors.
  • Won bench trial over enforceability of post-nuptial agreement in which the amount at stake exceeded $150 million.

Pharma, Medical Devices and Health Care
  • On the eve of trial, obtained a settlement worth over $200 million on behalf of a pharmaceutical company relating to a royalty dispute.
  • Obtained an injunction prohibiting the enforcement of an out-of-state non-compete agreement on behalf of the world’s largest manufacturer of surgical robots.
  • Defended mass-tort product liability claims brought against manufacturer of "fen-phen"
  • Defended mass-tort product liability claims brought against manufacturers of products containing PPA (Phenylpropanolamine).
  • Defended manufacturer of spinal-cord stimulators and pacemakers in various product liability claims of negligence and strict liability.
  • Defended manufacturer of various asbestos-containing products in product liability claims

Class Actions
  • Obtained a dismissal of all claims on behalf of an automobile manufacturer sued in a national class action alleging breach of express and implied warranties relating to allegedly defective windshields.
  • Obtained a complete dismissal of all claims against a national software company sued in several national class actions alleging that the company’s policies of “sunsetting” online services violated sections of California’s Unfair Competition Law, the Consumer Legal Remedies Act and constituted a breach of express and implied warranties.
  • Obtained a dismissal of all claims on behalf of a motorcycle manufacturer sued in a national class action alleging design defect and breach of warranties.
  • Represented manufacturers in various mass torts and multi-district products liability litigation involving "fen-phen," PPA, asbestos, spinal-cord stimulators, etc.

Partnership, Founder and Executive Compensation Disputes
  • Defeated emergency injunction request and served as lead trial counsel LLC partnership dispute in Delaware Chancery Court.
  • Lead trial counsel in 5-week trial in California state court relating to partnership dispute.
  • Obtained a favorable settlement on behalf of an executive accused of backdating stock options.


Tom is the co-editor of Trade Secrets and Transitions, a blog providing legal news and analysis on the issues regarding employee mobility and trade secrets.