Kay Anderle


Kay Anderle



Southwestern University School of Law, J.D., 1989

Wake Forest University, B.A., Political Science, 1983

Practice Areas


Commercial Litigation

White Collar Criminal Defense


California Supreme Court

U.S. District Court for the Central District of California

“She has great instincts and clients listen breathlessly when she speaks.”

- Chambers

“Kay Anderle is exceptionally smart and hard-working.”

- Chambers


With over two decades of experience and 100 cases to jury verdict, Kay Anderle is among the region’s leading trial attorneys. Kay began her legal career over 26 years ago in the Orange County District Attorney’s Office, where she spent 12 years prosecuting criminal cases. She was one of its most respected prosecutors, and was assigned to several of its most prestigious trial units.

In 2004 Kay entered private practice, focusing on white collar criminal cases. Her negotiation and trial skills have made her one of the most effective defense lawyers in Southern California, for which she has been repeatedly recognized in The Best Lawyers in America, both in white collar and non-white collar criminal defense. Her versatility as a trial attorney and skilled negotiator gives her clients a multi-dimensional advocate who can quickly assess their case and devise a winning strategy.

Around a decade ago Kay broadened her practice to include civil litigation. In 2009, Kay worked with Ms. Keller in a business fraud trial in which the jury awarded $350 million, the largest jury verdict in California that year. In 2011, she worked with Ms. Keller in the retrial of the epic doll battle Mattel v. MGA, in which MGA was defending against copyright infringement and trade secret misappropriation claims and prosecuting its own trade secret misappropriation action against Mattel. The jury rejected all of Mattel’s claims of copyright infringement and trade secret misappropriation and awarded $85,000,000 in damages to MGA Entertainment; the judge added another $85 million in punitive damages and $139 million in attorneys’ fees. (Although the judgment was reversed on appeal, the attorneys’ fee award remained.)

In 2013, she was co-lead plaintiff counsel on a business fraud trial which resulted in a jury award of over $3,375,000 in economic and over $1,465,000 in punitive damages.

Since that time Kay has worked on cases involving shareholder oppression (settled favorably to her client), allegations of human trafficking against a Saudi princess (all eventually dismissed), successful defense of a claim her client breached a $1 billion oral partnership for real estate investment, and a white collar criminal case alleging bribery of public officials by a developer that then-Attorney Jerry Brown called “the largest corruption case in the history of San Bernardino County, and possibly California.” After a nine-month jury trial the defendant was acquitted of all charges. Kay is also focused on defending a number of health care fraud cases brought by the Orange County District Attorney, and has special expertise in defense of state court white collar cases.

Kay is also managing partner of the firm.

Honors & Awards

  • Chambers USA: General Commercial Litigation (California)
  • Senior Fellow, Litigation Counsel of America (by invitation only, limited to top ½ of 1 percent of lawyers nationally)
  • Litigation Counsel of America, Mesereau Cup for Outstanding Criminal Defense Lawyer, 2015-2016
  • The Lawdragon 500 Leading Lawyers in America (2020-2022)
  • Los Angeles Magazine, Southern California Super Lawyers®, White Collar Criminal Defense and Business Litigation (2015-2022)
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers In America®, S. Naifeh & G. Smith (2011-22), Commercial Litigation, White Collar Criminal Defense, Legal Malpractice-Plaintiffs; Orange County Lawyer of the Year 2014 (Criminal Defense: Non-White Collar)
  • Life Member, Million Dollar Advocates Forum and Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum
  • National Trial Lawyers, Top 100 Trial Lawyers in California (2011-2014)
  • California Lawyer Magazine, 2012 Lawyers of the Year, Honorable Mention (Litigation)
  • OC Metro Magazine, Orange County’s Top Lawyers for 2013 (criminal defense)
  • Martindale-Hubbell “AV” rated, Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers
  • Outstanding Prosecutor, Orange County District Attorney (1995)

Professional Activities

  • Fellow, Litigation Counsel of America
  • American Inns of Court
  • Chapman University, Dale Fowler School of Law, Dean’s Advisory Board
  • Member, Trial Law Institute
  • Member, Diversity Law Institute
  • OCBA Administration of Justice Committee (2011-2016)
  • OCBA Judiciary Committee (2012-2016)
  • Orange County Asian American Bar Association
  • OCBA Charitable Fund, Board of Directors (2011-2012)
  • National Trial Lawyers, Executive Committee
  • Robert Banyard Inn of Court, Master Bencher
  • OC Chapter of Federal Bar Association
  • LA and OC Chapters of Business Trial Lawyers
  • Orange County Bar Association
  • California Attorneys for Criminal Justice
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers

Community Involvement

  • Democratic Foundation of Orange County
  • Segerstrom Center for the Arts, Friend of the Center
  • South Coast Repertory, Golden Circle
  • Los Angeles Opera, Patron
  • The Sierra Club

Representative Matters

  • In 2013, Kay was co-lead counsel for plaintiff in a business fraud trial. The jury awarded $3,375,798.71 in economic and $1,465,528.04 in punitive damages. Larian v. Talassazan, LASC-Santa Monica.
  • Team member for MGA in the 2011 retrial of Mattel v. MGA. Our client was defending against copyright infringement and trade secret misappropriation claims and prosecuting its own trade secret misappropriation claims. The jury rejected all of Mattel’s claims of copyright infringement and trade secret misappropriation and awarded $85,000,000 in damages to MGA Entertainment (although the award to MGA was reversed on appeal, the defense verdict on all of Mattel’s claims remains, and a $137,000,000 attorneys’ fee award also remains). Mattel v. MGA Entertainment, USDC-Central District of California.
  • In 2009, represented client on a case that resulted $350 million verdict in a business fraud trial. This was the largest jury verdict in California for 2009.  Auerbach Associates v. Daily, LASC.
  • Represent the former chief of gastroenterology at a major Southern California hospital, and professor of medicine at UCLA, on an indictment alleging conspiracy to commit insurance fraud.  District Attorney alleges fraud was in excess of $100 million.
  • In same case listed above, represented physician in action by the state Attorney General to suspend client’s license to practice medicine.  Motion was denied.
  • Represent the principal of an investment company in a District Attorney investigation into a $54 million Ponzi scheme and sale of unlicensed securities.
  • Represented the president of an appraisal company charged with conspiracy to commit mortgage loan fraud and identity theft.  District Attorney alleged fraud in excess of $50 million.
  • Represent former mortgage loan officer charged with conspiracy to commit mortgage loan fraud and theft.  District Attorney alleges loss in excess of $10 million.

Speaking Engagements

  • OCBA Young Lawyers’ Division, panelist, “Women in the Law:  Lessons from Our Leaders” (3/27/2018)