Josh Patashnik is an associate in the San Francisco office of Munger, Tolles & Olson. His practice focuses primarily on complex civil litigation and appellate litigation.
Mr. Patashnik has served as the lead drafter on dozens of appellate briefs and dispositive motions at all levels of the federal and state judiciary, including in the U.S. Supreme Court and the California Supreme Court. He regularly oversees and conducts all aspects of pretrial litigation, including internal investigation, depositions, expert discovery, alternative dispute resolution, and motion practice. He also frequently represents clients in matters before federal and state regulatory agencies.
Much of Mr. Patashnik’s practice involves representing leading technology companies in class actions and other high-stakes litigation regarding online publication, advertising, and privacy. He also has extensive experience in a wide range of other subject areas, including commercial litigation, First Amendment law, land use, and water law. In addition, he maintains an active pro bono practice that focuses primarily on asylum and other immigration matters.
Key representations include:
- Airbnb in litigation regarding municipal housing regulation and publisher liability under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.
- Facebook in class actions at both the appellate and trial court levels regarding digital advertising and user privacy.
- Imperial Irrigation District in litigation and administrative proceedings regarding Colorado River water rights, water transfer agreements, and the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).
- Wells Fargo in obtaining summary judgment against claims that the company’s mortgage lending violated the Fair Housing Act and other civil rights laws.
Before joining the firm, Mr. Patashnik served as a law clerk to Justice Anthony M. Kennedy of the U.S. Supreme Court and Judge Jeffrey S. Sutton of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.
Mr. Patashnik is the author of several articles on water law, property, and takings, and is a frequent speaker at conferences on these subjects. He is also the co-chair of the Appellate Section of the Barristers Club of the Bar Association of San Francisco and is a regular contributor to the “Supreme Court Watch” column in San Francisco Attorney magazine.
Mr. Patashnik received his law degree from Stanford Law School, where he served as senior articles editor of the Stanford Law Review and president of the Moot Court Board. He received his undergraduate degree in Government from Harvard University, where he graduated summa cum laude and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa.
- Arizona v. California and the Equitable Apportionment of Interstate Waterways, 56 Arizona Law Review 1 (2014)
- Bringing a Judicial Takings Claim, 64 Stanford Law Review 255 (2012)
- All Groundwater Is Local: California’s New Groundwater Monitoring Law, 22 Stanford Law & Policy Review 317 (2011)
- Physical Takings, Regulatory Takings, and Water Rights, 51 Santa Clara Law Review 365 (2011)
- Co-author, Supreme Court Watch: Has the Time Come to Reform the Supreme Court?, San Francisco Attorney magazine (Winter 2016)
- Co-author, Supreme Court Watch: Arbitration’s Empire, San Francisco Attorney magazine (Spring 2016)
- Supreme Court Watch: A Term Full of Surprises, San Francisco Attorney magazine (Fall 2015)
- Supreme Court Watch: Back in the Spotlight (Again), San Francisco Attorney magazine (Spring 2015)
- Co-author, Supreme Court Watch: The Federal Circuit Under Fire, San Francisco Attorney magazine (Fall 2014)
- Co-author, Supreme Court Watch: Abandoned Railroad Rights-of-Way, San Francisco Attorney magazine (Summer 2014)