Charles M. Kagay

Top rated Appellate attorney in San Francisco, California

Complex Appellate Litigation Group LLP
Charles M. Kagay
Complex Appellate Litigation Group LLP

Practice Areas: Appellate; view more

Licensed in California since: 1976

Education: Harvard Law School

Selected to Super Lawyers: 2004 - 2010, 2013 - 2023

Complex Appellate Litigation Group LLP

96 Jessie Street
San Francisco, CA 94105 Visit website


Attorney Charles M. Kagay serves of counsel to the Complex Appellate Litigation Group LLP, which has offices in San Francisco and Los Angeles, California. A top-rated attorney with more than 45 years of legal experience, Mr. Kagay has become one of the state's leading appellate lawyers and has been certified as an appellate specialist by The State Bar of California's Board of Legal Specialization.

Over the course of his career, Mr. Kagay has gained extensive experience handling complex litigation and appeals in state and federal trial appellate courts, involving antitrust law, securities law, administrative law, professional licensure and physician credentialing matters, anti-SLAPP motions, and numerous other legal issues. Among his most notable appointments, he served as Chief Appellate Counsel for two independent counsel investigations into cabinet-level officials in Washington, D.C., and as Deputy Attorney General for the California Department of Justice.

Mr. Kagay earned his undergraduate degree from Harvard College in 1972 and his master's degree in public policy from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government in 1976. That same year, he obtained his Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School and his license to practice law from The State Bar of California. Maintaining an active presence in his legal community, Mr. Kagay has served as president and chairman of the board of directors for the International Network of Boutique and Independent Law Firms.

Widely regarded as a leader in his field, Mr. Kagay has published articles and reference guides on a variety of legal topics, and he has presented continuing legal education seminars and lectures on appellate practice, litigating class actions, and other subjects. Recognized for his impeccable professionalism and his service, he has earned an AV Preeminent peer review rating* from Martindale-Hubbell and a Superb rating on Avvo.

*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


Focus areas


  • 100% Appellate

First Admitted: 1976, California

Professional Webpage:

Representative Clients:
  • State of California.  Special Deputy Attorney General.  Representing the State of California in hospital merger litigation; United States v. Microsoft monopolization litigation; Stem Cell Bond validation cases; DRAM price-fixing litigation; major oil company merger litigation.
Bar/Professional Activity:
  • State Bar of California, Committee on Appellate Courts (Member, 2003-2006); State Bar of California Antitrust and Unfair Competition Law Section (Member, Executive Committee, 1996-1999); State Bar of California Committee on the Administration of Justice (Member, 1988-1991); International Network of Boutique Law Firms ( President, San Francisco Chapter (2005-present); Member, Board of Directors (2008-present); Chairman, Board of Directors (2102-present); International President (2012-present).
Verdicts/Settlements (Case Results):
  • Notable appellate decisions: Tri-City Healthcare District v. Sterling(Cal. Ct. App., Dec. 11, 2012, D060431) 2012 WL 6128848;Young v. Tri-City Healthcare Dist. (2012) 210 Cal.App.4th 35;Alcoser v. Thomas (Cal. Ct. App., Feb. 16, 2011, A124848) 2011 WL 537855, cert. denied, (U.S. 2011) 132 S.Ct. 518; Terzian-Feliz v. Ajamian (Cal. Ct. App., Feb. 11, 2010, A119333) 2010 WL 468059; Mileikowsky v. West Hills Hospital and Medical Center, 45 Cal.4th 1259 (2009); UAS Management, Inc., v. Mater Misericordiae Hospital, 169 Cal. App.4th 357 (2008); In re Yan (N.D. Cal. 2007) 381 B.R. 747; Yaqub v. Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System, 122 Cal. App.4th 474 (2004); Cel-Tech Communications, Inc. v. Los Angeles Cellular Telephone Co., 20 Cal. 4th 183 (1999); In re Sealed Case, 121 F.3d 729 (D.C. Cir. 1997); Abramson v. Gonzales, 949 F.2d 1567 (11th Cir. 1992); In re Co-ordinated Pretrial Proceedings in Petroleum Products Antitrust Litigation (MDL-150), 906 F.2d 432 (9th Cir. 1990)
Educational Background:
  • Master in Public Policy, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University 1976; Bachelor of Arts in Applied Mathematics, Harvard College 1972
  • Martindale-Hubbell rating: AV® Preeminent™ 5.0 out of 5; Avvo rating 10.0 out of 10 (Superb)
Special Licenses/Certifications:
  • Certified as a Specialist in Appellate Law by the State Bar of California's Board of Legal Specialization, 2001; recertified 2006; recertified 2011.
Scholarly Lectures/Writings:
  • PUBLICATIONS “How ‘Federal’ Is California Summary Judgment Law after Aguilar?” Competition Vol. 11, No. 1 (Spring 2002) California Antitrust Law (Second), Chapter 11, Indirect-Purchaser Actions (with others) State Bar of California, 2001Competition Vol. 7, No. 1 (Summer 1998) (issue editor) California Antitrust Law, Chapter 6, Monopolization (with Michael I. Spiegel); State Bar of California, 1991 CONTINUING EDUCATION PRESENTATIONS “How Not to Lose Your Appeal in the Trial Court,” State Bar of California Section Education Institute (January 2006) “Win the Appeal Before Trial: An Appellate Lawyer’s Guide to Perfecting Pretrial Appeals for Trial Lawyers,” State Bar of California Annual Meeting (September 2005) “Litigating the Class Action Lawsuit in California,” National Business Institute (December 2000 and September 2002) “Antitrust Summary Judgment,” 49th Annual Spring Meeting, American Bar Association Section of Antitrust Law (March 2001) “Law and Economics of Predatory Pricing Under Federal and State Law,” Golden State Antitrust and Unfair Competition Law Institute (October 2000)
Other Outstanding Achievements:
  • Chief Appellate Counsel, Office of Independent Counsel in re Cisneros 2001 to 2006, Office of Independent Counsel in re Espy 1995 to 2002 -- assisting special prosecutors appointed to investigate activities of federal Cabinet officials.
  • “Northern California SuperLawyer” in appellate law

Office location for Charles M. Kagay

96 Jessie Street
San Francisco, CA 94105

Phone: 415-649-6700


18 Years Super Lawyers
  • Super Lawyers: 2004 - 2010, 2013 - 2023

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