FacultyFaculty/Author Profile

Deborah L. Stein

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP

Los Angeles, CA, USA


Deborah Stein represents a broad range of clients in their most significant commercial litigation matters. Deborah takes the time to learn and understand her clients’ businesses and commercial realities so that she can provide thoughtful, practical advice even in the most fast-paced, contentious litigations. Deborah’s “all in” approach enables her to partner with her clients to navigate strategically yet passionately through a variety of complex and often thorny legal challenges. She routinely represents clients in high-stakes matters, including cybersecurity and trade secrets litigation, securities and consumer class actions, and insurance coverage and business practices disputes. Deborah devotes a significant part of her practice to representing clients in cases involving the False Claims Act and whistleblower allegations of fraud. Deborah’s recent litigation experience includes:

  • Representing two automobile technology companies in litigation concerning the misappropriation of proprietary automotive data, including pursuit of claims under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act and the Defend Trade Secrets Act;
  • Successfully defending Berkshire Hathaway-owned insurance companies in cybersecurity class action litigation;
  • Arbitrating a significant dispute between former joint venture partners concerning the dissolution of their technology joint venture and sale of its assets;
  • Successfully representing through appeal a financial institution in False Claims Act litigation relating to the federal assistance provided to AIG;
  • Defending former officers of Washington Mutual in shareholder and FDIC litigation in federal court in Seattle;
  • Successfully securing summary judgment and Ninth Circuit affirmance in insurance bad faith litigation;
  • Obtaining a directed verdict at trial and Ninth Circuit affirmance on behalf of an insurance company against claims by another insurer for equitable contribution relating to hundreds of underlying construction defect claims;
  • Achieving summary judgment on behalf of a leading property casualty insurer in a False Claims Act case relating to Hurricane Katrina claims handling practices; and
  • Obtaining dismissal of a putative consumer class action filed against a leading producer, marketer and distributor of high-quality branded food products.

Deborah co-chairs the Cyber Risk and Data Privacy Subcommittee of the American Bar Association’s Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee (Section of Litigation). She is on the Board of Directors of Public Counsel and the Global Advisory Board of the Women in Law Empowerment Forum (WILEF). Deborah is recognized by Chambers, where sources describe her as an “[e]xtremely smart and fearless litigator” who is “very tenacious” and “really focused on her clients’ interests.” The Legal 500 recently listed Deborah as a “Leading Lawyer” in General Commercial Disputes and also recognized her in Insurance: Advice to Insurers.  Additionally, Deborah has been recognized as one of the “Top 75 Women Litigators” in California by the Daily Journal. In 2012, she was recognized by Law360 as one of five “Rising Stars” for Insurance. Deborah is frequently asked to speak and write on insurance coverage issues and has authored a regular column for the Los Angeles and San Francisco Daily Journals. A trusted thought leader in the insurance industry, Deborah was named to Law360’s Insurance Editorial Advisory Board in 2015 and 2016. 

Deborah received a B.A. from Yale University in 1995, with a double major in political science and studies in the environment. She obtained her J.D., cum laude, from the New York University School of Law in 1999, where she served as a Notes Editor on the New York University Law Review. Prior to joining the Firm in 2001, Deborah served as a law clerk for the Hon. Peter C. Dorsey in the United States District Court for the District of Connecticut.

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