Jay Fowler joined Bergeson, LLP after 35 years of experience in commercial, tort and environmental litigation at McCutchen Doyle. He has completed over 35 trials, arbitrations, and administrative adjudicative hearings. Mr. Fowler’s trials included claims of breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, breach of commercial leases, misappropriation of trade secrets, wrongful termination, fraud in commercial and real estate transactions, priority of security interests, unfair business practices, wrongful termination, automotive and medical product defects, construction defects, air pollution, groundwater pollution, maritime oil spills, and nuisance. His early trial experience emphasized defense of claims of automotive product defects, and maritime cases. His practice then expanded to include complex commercial litigation, environmental pollution and toxic torts claims, securities and consumer class actions, wrongful termination, attorney professional responsibility, and real estate disputes. Mr. Fowler’s clients have included manufacturers and distributors of high-tech products and equipment including semiconductor fabrication systems, semiconductor devices, computer software programs, medical devices, construction products, automobiles, trucks and heavy equipment. The diversity of his business clientele is unique, ranging from software developers to real estate developers; from oil refiners to computer manufacturers. He has also managed nationwide product recalls for computer batteries and other consumer products. Mr. Fowler is among a handful of attorneys who have completed trials of environmental tort claims for personal injury and property damages, an air pollution case, a groundwater contamination case and a maritime oil spill case.
In 2003, Mr. Fowler led the Bergeson trial team to a $15.5 million judgment for its client Lam Research Corporation against Dallas Semiconductor Corporation in a breach of contract case. This was one of the largest verdicts ever in a Commercial Code case in Silicon Valley. The case, tried to a Santa Clara County jury, was filed after Dallas refused to accept the first two installments of a $20 million contract for semiconductor fabrication equipment and related services. The verdict was for Lam’s lost profits under U.C.C § 2708(2). Jay overcame the defendants’ claim that there was no contract because the documents exchanged by the parties had boilerplate terms which did not agree. The jury accepted Lam’s evidence that the contracts were formed by conduct under U.C.C. § 2207(3).
In 2001, Mr. Fowler successfully defended a dock owner, LP Corporation, against a ship owner’s claim for indemnity for the cost of cleaning up one of California’s most expensive maritime oil spills. The Federal District Court in San Francisco ruled that LP had zero fault for collision and oil spill, and the 9th Circuit affirmed.
Obtained a defense verdict in Santa Clara County Superior Court in favor of LP Corporation in a product and construction defect case in which a co-defendant was found liable for over $20 million.
Mr. Fowler is a member of the California Bar and is admitted to all federal district courts in California and the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit Court. He is also a member of the Inns of Court, Silicon Valley Chapter. He has served the legal community in the Silicon Valley as: Director and President of the Santa Clara County Bar Association Law Foundation, Santa Clara County Bar Association, Federal Courts Committee, Merit Selection Committee for U.S. Magistrate and Bankruptcy Judges, CEB lecturer – opening statements, final arguments, and contract remedies, Judicial Arbitrator, Santa Clara County Superior Court, Santa Clara Country pro bono attorney of the year 1999.
Jay graduated from Harvard in 1957 and from Boalt law school in 1965. In between, he served as a captain in the United States Marine Corp. Before moving to Silicon Valley in 1982 he was elected councilman and mayor of the town of Moraga, California. In 1981, he opened McCutchen Doyle’s Silicon Valley office in San Jose and in 1998 moved to McCutchen’s Palo Alto office. Just before McCutchen merged with the Bingham firm in 2002, Mr. Fowler returned to San Jose to join Bergeson, LLP. “I couldn’t resist the opportunity to team up with the talented and dedicated litigators here at Bergeson, LLP.”