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John D. Vaughn

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Securities Litigation Attorney in San Diego, CA

Breakaway Partners
600 B Street, Suite 2100
San Diego, CA 92101
Phone: 619-826-8345
Fax: 619-460-0437
Selected to Super Lawyers: 2013 - 2022
Licensed in California Since: 1994
Practice Areas: Securities Litigation, Business Litigation, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Employment Litigation: Defense
Attorney Profile

John D. Vaughn is a co-founder of Breakaway Partners in San Diego, California. Mr. Vaughn has over 25 years of legal experience handling business and commercial litigation matters, employment issues, financial industry dispute resolution, practice migration and RIA formation. He serves individual and corporate clients throughout the San Diego area. 

Over the years, Mr. Vaughn has argued complex matters before state and federal courts, as well as various administrative agencies. He is a respected member of the legal community, and handles cases involving breach of contract, trade secrets, unfair business practices and employment disputes.

Acknowledging his legal ability and high ethical standards, Martindale-Hubbell awarded Mr. Vaughn with an AV Preeminent* peer review rating, the highest rating available. He has also been recognized by publications, including Los Angeles magazine, San Diego magazine and the American Lawyer.

Involvement in professional organizations allows Mr. Vaughn to stay active in his legal community and maintain relationships with colleagues. He is a member of the San Diego County Bar Association, the Tennessee Bar Association, the State Bar of California, the American Bar Association, the Federal Bar Association and several other national legal organizations.

Mr. Vaughn is a summa cum laude graduate of California State University, Fullerton, where he received bachelor’s degrees in English literature and psychology. He earned his law degree from Santa Clara University School of Law, graduating with honors. He is qualified to practice before the state courts of California and Tennessee, several federal courts, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th and 11th circuits 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 Rating™ fall into two categories – legal ability and general ethical standards.

Practice Areas
  • 20%Securities Litigation
  • 40%Business Litigation
  • 20%Alternative Dispute Resolution
  • 20%Employment Litigation: Defense


10 Years Super Lawyers
  • Super Lawyers: 2013 - 2022

About John D. Vaughn

First Admitted: 1992, Tennessee

Professional Webpage:

Scholarly Lectures/Writings

  • Understanding Fiduciary Duties in Business Entities, University of California Press, 2016 - 2020


  • AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5.0 Peer Review Rated, Martindale-Hubbell
  • San Francisco Top-Rated Lawyer, San Francisco Chronicle and The Wall Street Journal, 2012-2020
  • Top Rated Lawyer, Intellectual Property, Martindale-Hubbell, The American Lawyer and Corporate Counsel Magazine, 2012-2020
  • Top Lawyer, Business Litigation, Martindale-Hubbell, San Diego Magazine, 2012-2020
  • Top Lawyer of Southern California, Los Angeles Magazine, 2012-2020
  • San Diego Super Lawyer, Business Litigation and Securities Litigation, Super Lawyers, 2013-2020
  • Southern California Super Lawyer, Securities Litigation, Super Lawyers, 2013-2020

Representative Clients

  • Acceris Communications, Inc.
  • Yodlee, Inc.
  • Royal Dutch Shell Corporation
  • Plus Orthopedics, Inc.
  • Merrill Lynch
  • Esquire Deposition Services, LLC
  • Ernst & Young
  • Coral Energy, LLC

Bar/Professional Activity

  • California, 1994
  • Defense Research Institute, Member
  • San Diego Intellectual Property Law Association, Member
  • San Diego County Bar Association, Member
  • Tennessee Bar Association, Member
  • California Bar Association, Member
  • U.S. Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) Bar Association, Member
  • Federal Bar Association, Member
  • National Institute for Trial Advocacy Advocates Association, Member
  • Association of Business Trial Lawyers of America, Member
  • American Inns of Court, Louis M. Welsh Chapter, Barrister
  • American Bar Association, Member
  • U.S. District Court of the District of Columbia
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of California
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of California
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of California
  • U.S. District Court Central District of California
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 9th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 11th Circuit
  • Tennessee, 1992

Educational Background

  • California State University at Fullerton, California, B.A., Honors: summa cum laude, Honors: Highest Honors, Major: English Literature, Major: Psychology, 1988
  • University of Tennessee

Industry Groups

  • Financial
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Office Location for John D. Vaughn

600 B Street
Suite 2100
San Diego, CA 92101

Phone: 619-826-8345

Fax: 619-460-0437

Last Updated: 5/15/2022

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