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Philip M. Guess

Administrative Partner (Seattle)
Fax +1.206.370.6079

Mr. Guess is a partner in K&L Gates' Seattle office.  His practice focuses on representing clients in securities and business disputes.

Securities Litigation
Mr. Guess' recent securities experience includes his representation of the Bayou Unofficial Creditors' Committee and Bayou Official Creditors' Committee, in which he assisted investors in the Bayou family of hedge funds to recover in excess of  $85 million in cash or pending judgments in what was, at the time, the largest hedge fund Ponzi Scheme in the United States.  Similarly, Phil is representing and advising several clients regarding claims and potential claims surrounding Bernard Madoff and Bernard L. Madoff Securities, LLC ("BLMS").  Phil has represented a variety of institutions and investors in matters or disputes involving the Securities & Exchange Commission, Securities Investor Protection Corporation, and Washington State Department of Financial Institutions. 

Business Litigation
With respect to business litigation, Mr. Guess has a broad degree of experience in courts throughout Washington and California as well as cases in other jurisdictions including Oregon, Idaho, New York, Montana, and Tennessee.  He has represented companies in disputes involving alleged contractual breaches, usurpation of trade secrets, tortious interference and class action allegations. 


  • Ranked in Chambers USA 2014 and 2013 for Litigation: General Commercial: Washington
  • Selected to the Washington Super Lawyers list (2007-2014)
  • Selected to the Washington Rising Stars list (2004-2006)
  • Adjunct Professor of Law, Seattle University, Securities Law
Securities Litigation Experience 
  • Represent group of defrauded investors in In Re Bayou Group, LLC pending in bankruptcy court in the Southern District of New York.  Investors thus far have recovered monies and judgments in excess of  $85 million. 
  • Represent trustee for Seattle based real estate funds in multi-million dollar fraud/Ponzi Scheme case. 
  • Represent Northwest and California based investment funds with respect to investments in, or affected by, BLMS including litigation in cases pending in New York and California.  New York case still pending and California case recently dismissed.
  • Represent East Coast based investment fund in bankruptcy proceeding pending in the Southern District of New York bankruptcy court in the Securities Investor Protection Corporation et al v. Lehman Brothers Inc.
  • Represent large state employees pension fund in dispute with investment fund and former founder involving founders' recent criminal plea related to bribery scandal.
  • Represent former officer of technology company in class action securities litigation pending in Idaho federal court.
  • Represented mineral company in class and derivative actions in Idaho federal court and related litigation before the Securities & Exchange Commission. 
  • Represented interests of co-founder in technology company derivative litigation pending in King County Superior Court. 
  • Represented Texas based security and technology company in dissenters' rights litigation in King County.
  • Represented outside directors of Northwest technology company in companion derivative cases pending in the Western District of Washington and King County Superior Court.
  • Represented Northwest based time share company in shareholder derivative litigation pending in federal court in the Northern District of California.
  • Represented former Chief Financial Officer of San Diego based technology company in company investigation and associated derivative action. 
  • Represented medical diagnostic laboratory in derivative case pending in San Jose Superior Court. 
  • Represented several companies with respect to a series of informal or formal investigations by the Securities & Exchange Commission into potential employee insider trading. 
  • Represented several investment funds in investigations and/or proceedings before the Washington Department of Financial Institutions pertaining to a variety of regulatory issues.  

Business Litigation Experience
  • Represent Seattle technology company in multi-million dollar breach of contract action pending in King County Superior Court. 
  • Represented national cellular telephone company in litigation in Kitsap County Superior Court involving multi-million dollar breach of contract dispute.  Obtained multi-million dollar summary judgment award.
  • Represented warehouse lending company in fraudulent conveyance action against former retail lender in King County Superior Court.  Obtained multi-million dollar summary judgment award. 
  • Represented partnership real estate venture in litigation with dispute with former partner in Montana Federal District Court.
  • Represented large Pennsylvania based energy company in large breach of contract arbitration related to transportation and delivery of natural gas.
  • Represented Northwest based maritime company in trade secret/non-compete litigation with two former executive employees in King County Superior Court. 
  • Represented large Northwest based technology company in defamation case in the federal District Court for the District of Columbia.  Obtained summary dismissal of case. 
  • Represented British university in breach of contract dispute with former PhD candidate filed in federal court in the Western District of Washington.  Obtained summary dismissal of case which was confirmed on appeal. 
  • Represented Taiwan based technology company in breach of contract litigation in federal District Court in Indiana and Hong Kong. 
  • Represented large national pipeline company in dispute with various agencies of the State of Washington regarding awarding requisite permits for expansion.  Obtained injunctive relief in client's favor. 
  • Represented large national bank in dispute in breach of contract/fiduciary duty claim by mortgage holder.  Obtained summary dismissal. 
  • Represented national cellular telephone company in consumer class action filed in King County Superior Court regarding purported improper allocation of minutes.  Case summarily dismissed.