With a particular focus on crafting highly persuasive legal arguments before trial and appellate courts, Nicholas F. Daum has obtained successful results for clients including major entertainment-industry corporations, religious organizations, law firms, and professional advisors. Fluent in all stages of civil litigation, Mr. Daum’s skill in crafting legal arguments has helped clients resolve novel and cutting-edge legal issues, especially in areas of commercial and contract law, First Amendment and constitutional law, and professional liability.

Education

Yale Law School, J.D., 2003

  • Cover Fellow
  • Yale Law Journal, Notes Editor
  • Yale Journal on Regulation, Executive Editor
  • Research Assistant to Professor Owen Fiss

University of California at Berkeley, M.A., History, 2000

  • Mellon Fellow

Cornell University, B.A., History and College Scholar Program, 1996

  • Graduated magna cum laude

Clerkships

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

  • Law Clerk, Hon. Raymond C. Fisher

Media, Entertainment

  • Obtained a defense-side summary judgment verdict for the estate of one of Hollywood’s most prominent business managers against a claim for hundreds of millions of dollars, in a case involving novel and significant issues concerning California’s mediation privilege.
  • Secured a plaintiff’s-side summary judgment of more than $14 million on behalf of client, Viacom International Inc., in a lawsuit against toymaker MGA Entertainment Inc. for breach of contract.
  • Obtained a complete defense-side victory for Paramount Pictures at trial and on appeal in a dispute over the financing for the film “No Country for Old Men.”
  • Obtained complete defense-side summary judgment for defendant BET Networks, Inc., in a case involving novel First Amendment issues applied to performers and cast members.
  • Obtained complete victory on appeal for Current Media, LLC and former Vice President Al Gore in an action involving novel claim of “idea submission” of a business idea.
  • Integral member of the team that obtained a complete defense victory for Paramount Pictures at trial and on appeal in a complex commercial dispute over domestic and international film financing.
  • Obtained a successful result on a motion to dismiss for Paramount Pictures in a case involving the film “The Godfather.” The case resulted in a successful settlement.
  • Representing the heirs of a holocaust survivor in a federal court action against a Spanish state-owned museum for the restitution of a Camille Pissarro painting looted by the Nazis.

Representation of Lawyers and Law Firms

  • Obtained a complete victory, in a published appellate opinion, for a law firm sued for defamation after issuing a press release.
  • Obtained dismissal of an action against a lawyer who represented heirs of the original authors of the “Superman” comics.
  • Represents law firms in ongoing confidential legal malpractice actions.

Commercial Litigation

  • Obtained total victory on appeal for entertainment company, Ascent Media Group, and several of its executives and in-house attorneys against a lawsuit filed by a former executive claiming fraud and legal malpractice.
  • Helped achieve a complete victory on trial and appeal in a $200 million tortious interference claim against a major casino company in connection with Indian gaming in California.
  • Secured a favorable settlement for a group of founders and early employees of a major internet company in groundbreaking litigation involving the venture capital industry.
  • Susman Godfrey LLP, 2005–2009
  • California, 2005
  • S. District Courts
    Central, Eastern, Northern, and Southern Districts of California
  • S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit