Catherine M. Lee

Partner, San Francisco Office


Catherine M. Lee is a partner in the Firm’s San Francisco office specializing in financial institution, commercial, and employment litigation.

Ms. Lee has successfully defended JPMorgan Chase Bank, Citibank, PNC Bank, World Savings, and other financial institutions in cases involving a wide variety of issues such as check/deposit transactions, correspondent banking, fraud (including wires, check kiting, Ponzi schemes, and mortgage loans), internet banking, privacy, credit reporting, wrongful foreclosure, financial elder abuse, and unfair competition.  Ms. Lee presently represents several major financial institutions and other smaller banks in meeting their litigation needs.  Currently, Ms. Lee also represents officers and directors of various financial institutions in receivership cases brought by the FDIC. 

Ms. Lee represents public and private clients in the litigation of commercial matters that range from contract and tort disputes to cases involving privacy, trademark, and real estate issues.  She has resolved cases successfully on dispositive pretrial motions, on appeal, in mediation and arbitration, and at trial.  She was trial counsel in a four-month jury trial that resulted in a judgment for the client in excess of $5 million. Ms. Lee regularly advises new and seasoned businesses on corporate formations and transactions.

Ms. Lee counsels and represents employers on labor and employment matters.  She has prevailed in state and federal court litigation where claims of wage and hour violations, discrimination, wrongful termination, retaliation, harassment, workplace violence, trade secrets, and PAGA were raised.  Ms. Lee provides advice regarding employee hiring and termination, wage and hour issues, employee discipline, and personnel disputes.  She reviews and prepares employee handbooks to ensure compliance with all federal, state, and local regulations and drafts employment agreements on behalf of employers and employees. 

Ms. Lee is fluent in Cantonese and conversant in Mandarin. 


  • State Bar of California
  • Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal
  • United States District Court for the Northern, Central & Eastern Districts of California
  • Bar Association of San Francisco, Member
  • California State Bar Financial Institutions Committee, Member
  • American Bar Association, Member
  • Alameda County Bar Association, former Director