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Paul F. Rafferty

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Business Litigation Attorney in Irvine, CA

Thomas Whitelaw
18101 Von Karman Ave., Suite 230
Irvine, CA 92612
Phone: 949-679-6400
Fax: 949-679-6405
Selected to Super Lawyers: 2004, 2007
Licensed in California Since: 1987
Practice Areas: Business Litigation (50%), Intellectual Property Litigation (20%), Civil Litigation: Plaintiff (10%), Real Estate: Business (10%), Securities Litigation (10%)
Attorney Profile

Paul F. Rafferty is an attorney with Thomas Whitelaw law firm in Irvine, California. A nationally ranked trial lawyer with more than 34 years of legal experience, Mr. Rafferty provides unmatched counsel and support to a diverse range of clients across his region who have legal needs involving any of the following:

· Complex civil litigation

· Intellectual property law and litigation

· Securities law and litigation

· Trade secrets, breaches of contact and fiduciary duty, and other complicated civil matters

As an attorney, Mr. Rafferty has represented a broad clientele of commercial and professional clients in a variety of industries, including oil and gas, technology, retail, manufacturing, real estate and others. He has become a recognized leader in class action defense, and he has defended the rights and interests of his clients against baseless tortious claims involving tens of millions of dollars. 

Among his most notable successes, Mr. Rafferty defended a client facing potentially $56 million in damages, and he holds the distinction of having no class actions that he defended against certified. He also has extensive experience with mediation and arbitration, and he has lectured across the country on these topics and more.

Honored for his outstanding professionalism and legal abilities, Mr. Rafferty is AV Preeminent peer-review rated,* the highest rating, through Martindale-Hubbell, and the Daily Journal included him in its Top 20 AI Lawyers in California list in 2019.

A 1981 graduate of LaSalle University with a degree in accounting, Mr. Rafferty obtained his Juris Doctor degree from Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey School of Law in 1987. He also obtained his degree in sociology from LaSalle University in 2010. He is admitted to practice before all U.S. District Courts in California and New York as well as the Central and Southern Districts of Illinois, the District of South Carolina and the District of Nebraska.

An accomplished appellate attorney, he also holds his admission to practice before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd, 3rd and 9th Circuits; the California Courts of Appeal; and the Supreme Court of the United States.

*AV®, AV Preeminent®, Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished and Martindale-Hubbell Notable are certification marks used under license in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell® is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the anonymous opinions of members of the bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™ fall into two categories – legal ability and general ethical standards.

Practice Areas
  • 50%Business Litigation
  • 20%Intellectual Property Litigation
  • 10%Civil Litigation: Plaintiff
  • 10%Real Estate: Business
  • 10%Securities Litigation
Focus Areas

Trade Secret


2 Years Super Lawyers
  • Super Lawyers: 2004, 2007

About Paul F. Rafferty

First Admitted: 1987, California

Professional Webpage:


  • Daily Journal: Named one of twenty top AI lawyers in California, 2019
  • Martindale Hubble Peer AV Preeminent Rating

Bar/Professional Activity

  • U.S. District Court Northern District of New York
  • American Arbitration Association
  • U.S. District Court Western District of New York
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of New York
  • California State Courts and Courts of Appeal
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court District of Nebraska
  • U.S. District Court District of South Carolina
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court Central District of Illinois
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 2nd Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 3rd Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 9th Circuit
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of California
  • U.S. District Court Central District of California
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of California
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of California
  • Supreme Court of California

Educational Background

  • LaSalle University, B.S., Accounting, 1981
  • LaSalle University, B.A., Sociology, 2010
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Office Location for Paul F. Rafferty

18101 Von Karman Ave.
Suite 230
Irvine, CA 92612

Phone: 949-679-6400

Fax: 949-679-6405

Last Updated: 8/7/2021

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