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Katherine P. Gardiner


T (415) 781-7072
| F (415) 391-6258


Kate Gardiner is an experienced litigation and trial attorney who focuses her practice in toxic tort, product liability, personal injury and premises litigation. Kate has represented manufacturers, distributors, contractors and premises owners, including multiple Fortune 500 companies, in the power, military defense and construction industries. She specializes in cases venued in federal court, both in Multi-District Litigation (MDL) and all California District Courts. She has won summary judgment from various federal courts which have, for the first time, clarified both maritime and California law in favor of her clients.

Kate has deposed hundreds of plaintiffs, percipient witnesses, and expert witnesses, and she works on all aspects of litigation from the pleading stage through trial and settlement. She has answered “ready for trial” in a number of trial courts in San Francisco, Alameda and Los Angeles Counties.

Kate’s oversight of a large docket of cases continues to bring in great results, from orders granting summary judgment, to settlements orders of magnitude below initial demands, to frequent dismissal of cases.

After participating in numerous trial academies, including the IADC Trial Academy (2011) and the Sedgwick Trial Academy (2010), she created and continues to lead the firm’s own Trial College, which cultivates superior trial skills in associates through both hands-on practice and presentation by the firm’s experienced trial attorneys of proven best practices. Kate is also highly involved with the firm’s continuing education and mentoring programs which are similarly focused on bettering the skills of all of the firm’s attorneys.

Representative Successes
  • Obtained summary judgment in a personal injury asbestos-related matter with affirmative identification of the client, after a successful argument against plaintiffs’ assertion that the client’s product contained asbestos during the relevant time period. The court sustained Walsworth’s objections to plaintiff’s key percipient witness and corporate representative testimony, and granted summary judgment.
  • Obtained multiple dismissals of clients in response to jurisdictional motions, following detailed analyses of the clients’ histories and links to California compared with the locations of sites of injury or exposure.
  • Obtained summary judgment in an asbestos matter through argument that Plaintiff could only speculate that the asbestos-containing component of product was manufactured by client, given the limited years during which client supplied that component.
  • Negotiated favorable resolution of automotive accident case involving a young plaintiff with traumatic brain injury for a small fraction of Plaintiff’s eight-figure demand, after successful cross-examinations of Plaintiff’s key experts.
Industry Involvement

Professional Affiliations:

  • American Bar Association
  • California Bar Association (Litigation & Environmental Sections)
  • International Association of Defense Counsel Trial Academy Alumni

Speaking Engagements and Publications:

  • “Product Liability Litigation: Trends, Updates, and Critical Issues in Light of COVID-19,” The Knowledge Group Live Webinar, Speaker
  • ACI National Forum on Asbestos Claims & Litigation Conference: “View from the Bench”, Panel Moderator
  • Perrin Asbestos Conference: “The Judicial Roundtable”, Panel Moderator
  • “Recent Developments in Automotive Law,” Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Law Journal; Vol. 47.1.
  • “Beginning of a Case & Discovery Considerations,” HB Litigation West Coast Crash Course Seminar, Panelist
Beyond the Office

Kate is a Bay Area native.  She grew up in Oakland and now lives in Marin with her husband and twin daughters.  Kate is a big opera buff and is a longtime San Francisco Opera season ticket holder.

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