Todd M. Sorrell
JD 1994 - University of California at Los Angeles
BA 1991 - University of California at Santa Barbara
Todd Sorrell is Of Counsel with AFRCT’s litigation group.
Prior to joining, Todd was an equity partner at the international law firm of Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP (formerly Fulbright & Jaworski L.L.P.), which he joined in 1994. He was the first lawyer since the 1989 opening of the Los Angeles office of his prior firm to have risen through the ranks to be made partner, which occurred on January 1, 2003.
Todd has a wide variety of litigation/disputes experience, including employment law, wage and hour class actions and FLSA collective actions, commercial litigation, arbitrations, international disputes and arbitrations, contract and tort disputes, constitutional issues, trade secret, trademark, and patent litigation, securities litigation/arbitration, SEC investigations, insurance bad faith and coverage disputes, toxic tort and pharmaceutical/medical device litigation, products liability, banking, real estate issues, administrative law, licensing issues, gaming litigation, and environmental/water rights disputes. Shortly after being made a partner at his prior firm, Todd was named to the list of Southern California Rising Stars in the legal profession, and repeatedly has been selected as a Southern California “Super Lawyer,” an honor reserved for less than 5% of attorneys in the State.
Todd has defended public and private companies in wrongful termination actions, employment arbitrations, and OSHA hearings. In addition to defending employment and discrimination matters brought by individual claimants, Todd has represented public companies in wage and hour class actions, and is one of only a handful of lawyers to have ever tried a FLSA collective action case to jury verdict. Todd regularly advises clients on employment matters.
Todd focuses his practice on complex litigation and arbitration (domestic and international), and has tried jury and non-jury trials, as well as binding arbitrations and administrative law hearings. Todd also serves as an arbitrator and a mediator in both international and domestic matters, and has served as a temporary judge in various Southern California courtrooms.
In addition to Todd’s significant legal experience, he has also founded a number of successful businesses in various industries, including construction equipment rental, real estate, and property development
1994 – J.D., UCLA School of Law
1991 – B.A., with high honors, Spanish, University of California at Santa Barbara
While an undergraduate, Todd spent one year studying at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid.
While in law school, Todd served as judicial extern for the Honorable Consuelo Marshall, United States District Court, Central District of California.
Todd also holds a Master’s degree in Biblical Counseling from The Master’s University.
Todd was admitted to practice law in California in 1994 and is also admitted to practice before the United States District Courts for the Southern, Central, Eastern and Northern Districts of California, as well as the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and the Federal Circuit.
Admissions: California State Bar License
Rankings and recognitions
Southern California Super Lawyer, Law and Politics, 2005, 2006, 2016, 2017, 2018
Top Attorneys in Southern California, Los Angeles Magazine, 2017
Southern California Rising Star, Law and Politics and Los Angeles Magazine, 2004
Breath of Life Award, Crusade for a Cure, Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, 2004
The Wiley W. Manuel Award for Pro Bono Legal Services, The Board of Governors of the State Bar of California, 2004, 2005
Co-Author with Lesli Hutchinson, “To Spot and Keep the Job, Stand out from the Crowd,” Los Angeles Daily Journal, September 10, 2004
“Problemas en su Apartamento,” La Familia magazine, August 2004• Co-Author with Robert Dawson, “Spin City,” Los Angeles Daily Journal, May 22, 1997 (concerning regulation of California Gaming Industry)
“How to Make Discovery Less Painful,” Norton Rose Fulbright Litigation School for Corporate Counsel, Los Angeles, California, September 21, 2016
“How To Prepare A Fact Witness To Testify In A Fracking (Hydraulic Fracturing) Case,” The Seminar Group, Santa Barbara, California, February 8, 2013
“Trying an FLSA Collective Action Case: Top 10 Things You Need to Know,” Fulbright & Jaworski L.L.P. Web Seminar, May 19, 2010
Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Pasadena, California
Memberships and activities
Los Angeles Superior Court ADR panel of mediators
American Bar Association- International Section- Litigation Section
International Centre for Dispute Resolution
Los Angeles County Bar Association- Judicial Elections Evaluation Committee, former member- Government Resources Committee, former member
Dispute Resolution Services, Inc., former member of Board of Directors
Southwest Arbitration Committee of the ICC, former member
Foreign Law Expertise: International Centre for Dispute Resolution, Confronting Cultural Differences in International Arbitration; The Institute for Transnational Arbitration, The Center for American and International Law: The Art of Arbitrating; ICC International Commercial Dispute Resolution: Flexible Solutions for an Evolving World; International Centre for Dispute Resolution; International Law Section of State Bar of California; CANACO: Decision 2006: Debates on Key Issues in International Arbitration; ICC Institute of World Business Law: PIDA Seminar: International Commercial Arbitration.
Active in public service, Todd dedicates a significant amount of time to pro bono legal services through his firm, and is a former member of the Board of Directors for Dispute Resolution Services, Inc., a non-profit corporation of the Los Angeles County Bar Association dedicated to providing affordable conflict resolution services to the greater Los Angeles Community. He is also an active fundraiser for a number of different charities. In addition, Todd has been on the Advisory Board of Directors for the Jim Burke Education Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting teachers and students in the community. Todd has also taught college level courses on conflict resolution and counseling, and he has written two books (Journey To The Bending Light, 2008; The College Choice, 2017).
Sample representative experience
Defended Fortune 500 company in 6 week federal court jury trial against wage and hour claims brought under the Fair Labor Standards Act
Defended publicly traded company in wrongful termination/retaliation lawsuit and government investigation related to allegations of the unlawful killings of protected species
Successfully handled employment discrimination cases.
Obtained a defense verdict in insurance bad faith trial in Los Angeles Superior Court; affirmed on appeal
Represented insurance company in bad faith matter stemming from an underlying eight-figure wrongful death action.
Obtained multi-million dollar award (plus a seven figure attorneys’ fees award) in an international arbitration based on the improper termination of an international distribution contract
Successfully defended major entertainment company in patent infringement action involving hologram technology
Obtained a seven figure award in a patent infringement jury trial in federal court; affirmed in part on appeal
Defeated class certification, successfully defended, and obtained dismissals of various unlawful advertisement, product liability, and breach of warranty lawsuits against manufacturer of vapor recovery gasoline nozzles
Handled litigation relating to various familial disputes arising from the administration of a trust holding land, leases, oil rights, and cash
Defended water district in environmental/water rights dispute
Defended a number of actions involving claims brought by animal rights activists
Defended a security consulting company in binding arbitration relating to an undercover investigation
Successfully demurred to 92 count lender liability complaint
Obtained preliminary injunction against State and obtained verdicts in favor of clients in two trials brought by California Attorney General relating to management of California card club; affirmed on appeal
Successfully demurred to numerous claims for loss of nine figure revenue stream filed against accounting firm for alleged failure to prevent theft of high-level game pieces used by fast-food restaurants
Successfully handled the trial and appeals of two real estate disputes involving a case of first impression
Successfully prosecuted binding real estate arbitration; client received all requested damages as well as attorneys’ fees
Obtained temporary restraining orders, preliminary injunctions, and permanent injunctions relating to former employees and management in trade secret misappropriation cases
Successfully defeated a request for a preliminary injunction regarding an alleged exclusive licensing and distribution agreement
Successfully handled litigation relating to gene therapy technology
Successfully investigated and handled numerous matters arising from forged documents
Obtained numerous summary judgments for clients (plaintiffs and defendants) on a range of issues including breach of contract, fraud, emotional distress, bad faith, forgery, statutes of limitation, judicial estoppel, and competence
Successfully interfaced with and handled State agencies responsible for regulating client products and operations
Successfully defended pro bono unlawful detainer cases for low income tenants
Successfully handled numerous appeals in both state and federal courts, including the Federal Circuit
Successfully defeated injunction request in shareholder derivative suit
Successfully defended numerous trade secret, trademark, and patent claims
Handled numerous products liability matters
Handled Anti-SLAPP motions
Handled litigation issues relating to lottery winnings
Serve as panel arbitrator on International Chamber of Commerce, International Court of Arbitration
Served as a temporary judge through the Los Angeles Superior Court system