Paul E. Gaspari



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As a litigation shareholder of the firm, Paul advises clients on commercial law, insurance defense, public liability, real estate, and employment related litigation. He routinely represents employers and their insurers in the defense of sexual harassment claims, and discrimination , disability and retaliation claims in both state and federal courts, including DFEH and EEOC investigations and charges.

Paul was trial and appellate counsel in the following reported cases:

Karoutas v. HomeFed Bank (1991) 232 Cal.App.3d 767: Established duties of trustees conducting real estate foreclosure sales.

Bollard v. California Province (9th Cir. 1999) 196 F.3d 940: Affirmed ministerial exception to Title VII claims in 9th Circuit.

East Bay Asian Local Development Corp. v. State of California (1999) 69 Cal.App.4th 1033: Affirmed constitutionality of religious institution exemption to state landmarking act.

Juarez v. Boy Scouts of America, Inc. (2000) 80 Cal.App.4th 87: Affirmed summary judgment in favor of Diocese which sponsored Boy Scout troop in which molestation was alleged.

Richelle L. v. Roman Catholic Archbishop (2003) 106 Cal.App.4th 257: Affirmed dismissal of claim against employer for adult misconduct.

Ridgewater Associates v. Dublin San Ramon Services District (2010) 184 Cal.App.4th 629: Affirmed summary judgment for wastewater treatment facility accused of altering ground water migration causing damaging to adjoining commercial properties.

• From 2004 through 2006, Paul served as Defense Liaison Counsel in the California Judicial Council Coordinated Proceeding entitled “Clergy Cases III,” a clergy sexual abuse proceeding with over 350 claimants.

Paul is a member of the Litigation, Employment and Real Property Sections of the California State Bar. He has lectured with the Practicing Law Institute, the California Continuing Education of the Bar and various national and local defense organizations. He is also a member of the bar of the United States Supreme Court.

Paul has been selected for inclusion in Northern California Super Lawyers by Law & Politics and San Francisco Magazine since 2005. In addition, he was appointed as a member of the San Francisco Superior Court’s Mandatory Settlement Conference Panel.

Some examples of the litigation matters Paul has led include:

• Successfully negotiated a settlement of a transgender discrimination and failure to accommodate claim brought against a major California municipality.

• Obtained defense verdict in six-week jury trial v. religious order establishing that claims of sexual abuse by two plaintiffs were false claims.

• Obtained defense verdict in 11-day binding arbitration representing real estate developer who was accused of falsely representing the permitted use of two commercial condominiums in downtown San Francisco under local zoning laws. Post award successfully obtained judgment in superior court confirming the award.

• Successfully negotiated settlements of over $200 million in child molestation claims against institutional defendants accused of negligent hiring, supervision or retention.

• Obtained summary judgment for a Bay Area water and sanitation district accused of diverting groundwater migration which allegedly caused property damage to neighboring commercial buildings.

• Successfully settled claims against a municipality arising out of the death and injury to three young men at its civic zoo by a tiger which escaped her enclosure; successfully settled a claim against the municipality by a zoo keeper who was severely injured by the same tiger during feeding one year earlier.

• Successfully obtained insurance coverage for clients sued for child abuse, sexual harassment, employee misconduct, and fraud and misrepresentation in the sale of real property.



J.D., University of California, Hastings College of the Law, 1977

B.A., University of San Francisco, 1974




International Association of Defense Counsel

State Bar of California, Litigation, Employment and Real Property Sections

Association of Defense Counsel of Northern California

National Diocesan Attorneys Association
Member of Executive Committee

Western Diocesan Attorneys Association

San Francisco Superior Court’s Mandatory Settlement Conference Panel


Northern California Super Lawyer, 2005-2019