Leon Dayan is a member of the firm and has represented clients in numerous appellate and trial-court matters. Leon has co-authored several briefs in the United States Supreme Court, and has argued appeals in seven different federal circuit courts, as well as in state appellate and supreme courts. At the trial-court level, Leon’s practice has included the representation of unions in First Amendment matters as well as in RICO, union-governance, election, and employment matters; the representation of retirees in complex employee-benefit class-actions; and the representation of employee benefit plans in ERISA breach-of-fiduciary-duty cases.
Leon’s practice also includes counseling national unions on immigration-related questions. In addition, Leon has represented numerous individual attorneys on matters pertaining to professional ethics and bar disciplinary proceedings.
Leon received his JD degree from the University of California Berkeley’s Boalt Hall School of Law in 1989, where he was Order of the Coif. In 1985, he received his A.B. degree in History from Stanford University, where he graduated with honors and distinction, Phi Beta Kappa.
After completing law school, Leon served as a law clerk to the Honorable Betty B. Fletcher of United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Leon then practiced law in Los Angeles at a public interest law firm for three years before becoming an associate at Bredhoff & Kaiser in 1994. From 1999 through 2001, Leon taught employment law as an adjunct professor at the George Washington University School of Law.
Leon’s published articles include “Qui Tam Suits Against Public Entities After Stevens,” 19 TAF QR 15 (2000) and “The Scope of Copyright in Information: An Alternative to Classic Theory,” 42 Fed.Comm.L.J. 239 (1990).
Representative Cases Argued:
- United Brotherhood of Carpenters & Joiners v. Building and Construction Trades Department, AFL-CIO, 770 F.3d 834 (9th Cir. 2014) (non-violent use of economic pressure, including “intense” economic pressure that may be tortious under state law, is not “extortion” under the federal Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO)).
- SEIU v. NUHW, 718 F.3d 1036 (9th Cir. 2013) (upholding jury verdict finding that local union officials breached their fiduciary duty to their union by expending local union resources to plan the formation of a rival organization while they still were employed by the local)
- Wisconsin Education Association Council v. Walker, 705 F.3d 640 (7th Cir. 2013) (holding, over a strong dissent, that Wisconsin statute stripping “general employee” unions, but not “public safety” unions, of ability to finance associational activities through dues deduction was consistent with the First Amendment and the Equal Protection Clause)
- Quigley v. Giblin, 569 F.2d 449 (D.C. Cir. 2009)(upholding as reasonable a union rule requiring candidates for union office to limit access to campaign websites to members of the union)
- Bank of New York v. Janowick, 470 F.3d 264 (6th Cir. 2006) (holding that proceeds from a group retirement annuity contract that were generated when the annuity provider changed its ownership structure must be distributed to the individual annuitants, rather than to the employer who sponsored the pension plan that the annuity contracts replaced).
- AFL-CIO v. Chao, 409 F.3d 377 (D.C. Cir. 2005) (invalidating a Labor Department regulation requiring unions to file detailed financial reports on trust entities that are neither financed nor controlled by unions)
- Smith v. District of Columbia, 413 F.3d 86 (D.C. Cir. 2005) (holding that the District of Columbia had been deliberately indifferent to the physical safety of youths placed by the District in “independent living” facilities)
- Wright v. Oregon Metallurgical Corp., 360 F.3d 1090 (9th Cir. 2004) (holding that a sharp drop in the price of an employer’s publicly-traded stock does not, without more, trigger a duty on the part of a union to agree to amend or override the terms of a collectively-bargained retirement plan requiring employees to hold a certain percentage of their plan investments in employer stock)
- CF&I Steel, L.P. v. United Steel Workers, 23 P.3d 1197 (Colo. 2001) (invalidating on first amendment grounds a state law prohibiting labor-related, and only labor-related, picketing of residences).
- Herman v. Springfield Mass. Area Local 497, 201 F.3d 1, 4 (1st Cir. 2000) (upholding validity of union election and rejecting Secretary of Labor’s position that a union rule setting forth a qualification for candidacy is per se invalid merely because a high percentage of members choose not to take the steps needed to qualify).