An experienced trial lawyer and litigator, Manuel Cachán has served as trial counsel in various significant and high-profile matters, including:
- as first-chair trial counsel for Johnson & Johnson in a three-week jury trial in Oklahoma City state court alleging that exposure to Johnson’s Baby Powder causes mesothelioma. Following jury deliberations but before a verdict had been reached, the matter was resolved on favorable terms.
- for Johnson & Johnson in the first-ever California trial relating to J&J’s talc-based Baby Powder and Shower-to-Shower products and their alleged link to ovarian cancer. After trial, the court entered judgment notwithstanding the verdict for the J&J defendants and in the alternative granted J&J’s motion for a new trial. "Could Reversal of $417M Calif. Verdict Foreshadow Doom for Talc Cases?," National Law Journal October 24, 2017;
- in a similar product liability trial related to J&J’s talc-based products in St. Louis, the jury returned a complete defense verdict on all claims and awarded zero damages. "J&J Gets Its First Win in Missouri Talcum Powder Trials," Law360 March 3, 2017;
- for Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. in federal court in St. Paul, Minnesota, in an approximately two-month jury trial alleging mismanagement of pension investments in the bank’s securities lending program. The jury returned a complete defense verdict. "Wells Fargo Beats Suit Over Securities-Lending Losses," Law360 August 8, 2013;
- for NBCUniversal and KNBC-TV in a one-month jury trial in Los Angeles Superior Court alleging age discrimination, brought by a journalist formerly employed by the company. "NBC Benched Reporter" For Being ‘Too Veteran,’ Jury Told”, Law360 December 4, 2015;
- for Dick Clark Productions in a several-week bench trial in federal court involving breach of a production agreement, brought by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association over rights to the Golden Globes show "Judge Rules Golden Globes-NBC Deal Was Proper", The New York Times May 2, 2012;
- for Rysher Entertainment in a two-week jury trial in a suit brought by the actor Don Johnson, involving his alleged share of profits from a popular television show; and
- for Tesoro Refining and Marketing Company in an approximately one-week jury trial seeking damages sustained by the company as a result of the unplanned shut-off a refining tank.
Manuel was also engaged by Monsanto and its parent Bayer to serve as first-chair trial counsel in a jury trial involving claims that Round-Up herbicide causes non-Hodgkin lymphoma. He currently represents Mattel and Fisher-Price in nearly two dozen lawsuits around the country related to injuries supposedly caused by the Rock ‘n Play Sleeper.
Manuel has been recognized by The American Lawyer, which named him “Litigator of the Week”; the Los Angeles Daily Journal, which included him in its list of “Top 20 Under 40” lawyers; Benchmark Litigation, which has designated him a “Local Litigation Star” for Los Angeles; Law360, which named him to its list of “Top Lawyers Under 40 in the Nation”; and Minority Corporate Counsel magazine, which listed him as one of twelve diverse “Rising Star” attorneys nationwide.
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In the last several years, Manuel has represented Fortune 500 companies before federal and state courts around the country in breach-of-contract litigations, securities and banking actions, product liability lawsuits, professional malpractice cases, and suits brought under California’s Unfair Competition Law. Examples include:
- representing NBCUniversal Media LLC in connection with claims by actor Gabrielle Union over workplace issues on the competition talent show, "America’s Got Talent";
- representing Johnson & Johnson as trial counsel in a bellwether wrongful-death product liability action alleging that Tylenol causes severe liver injury;
- representing Wells Fargo in two lawsuits brought by the cities of Los Angeles and Oakland, respectively, alleging disparate-impact race discrimination in connection with mortgage lending;
- representing Wells Fargo in a class action brought by the City of Los Angeles alleging the bank engaged in unlawful sales practices;
- representing Wells Fargo in several suits alleging the mismanagement of investments made on behalf of various pension funds; and
- representing NBCUniversal in an arbitration involving the profits from a series of popular made-for-television movies.
Manuel has for many years taken an active role in the legal community. He has previously served as a member of the Commission on Judicial Nominees Evaluation (JNE) of the State Bar of California, which evaluates all candidates under consideration for a judicial appointment by the Governor. He currently serves on the Board of Governors of the Association of Business Trial Lawyers (ABTL) in Los Angeles.
Manuel is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. He was a Fulbright Fellow before enrolling in law school. Prior to beginning private practice, Manuel served as law clerk to the Honorable Arthur L. Alarcón of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
Manuel is the son of Cuban exiles and is fluent in Spanish.