Siobhan A. Handley

Mass Torts & Product Liability

Siobhan Handley has extensive experience in product liability litigation and mass tort defense work.  She has represented clients in a variety of litigation and regulatory matters involving accounting, auditing and securities law issues.   

As Orrick’s Managing Director of Resources, Ms. Handley has spearheaded the development of the firm’s innovative talent model—the first of its kind in a major law firm—which replaces the traditional associate lockstep advancement system with merit-based advancement.  She also has led the creation of a range of new lawyer roles that enable the firm to deliver enhanced value to its clients.  As chair of the firm’s Talent Committee, she oversees all aspects of lawyer training and performance feedback globally.   

Representative Experience

  • Union Carbide Corporation.  Ms. Handley is a member of the Orrick team acting as National Counsel to the Union Carbide Corporation in connection with asbestos-related personal injury lawsuits.  She has served, and continues to serve, as lead trial counsel in cases across the country.  In addition, Ms. Handley was one of the key trial counsel in the highly-publicized landmark trial in Texas State Court, Brazoria County, where Kelly-Moore Paint Company sued Union Carbide for US$1.4 billion in compensatory damages and US$4.2 billion in punitive damages that resulted in a defense verdict.  In addition, she was a member of the trial team in a "mass" asbestos trial in West Virginia in 2002.
  • Wyeth.  Ms. Handley represented Wyeth-Ayerst Laboratories and its parent, American Home Products Corporation (now known as Wyeth), in all product liability actions brought in New York against those companies involving the Norplant® System, a subdermal hormonal contraceptive product.  There were more than 150 such actions, brought by nearly 1,500 plaintiffs claiming to have suffered a variety of personal injuries as a result of their use of Norplant.  She was also part of the trial team in one Norplant® System case, Ramirez v. Wyeth, which was tried to a jury in the spring of 1999 and resulted in a defense verdict.  In addition, she represented Wyeth-Ayerst Laboratories and American Home Products Corporation in a class action in the Southern District of New York involving alleged accidental needlestick injuries.
  • Flexible Products.  Ms. Handley was a member of the trial team for Flexible Products in a lawsuit filed in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.  The plaintiffs were 1,400 coal miners who alleged respiratory injury from exposure to isocynate-containing products used in the coal mines to prevent roof collapses and improve ventilation.  After Frye motions, in limine motions, and jury selection, the case was favorably resolved in September 2010. 
  • Mutual Credit Corporation. Ms. Handley represents several parties, including Mutual Credit Corporation, a California licensed premium finance agency, in connection with litigation relating to non-recourse financed life insurance policies.  To date, the clients have successfully obtained a TRO and preliminary injunction.
  • Big Four Accounting Firms.  Ms. Handley has had significant experience in representing PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP in various litigation and regulatory proceedings in both federal and state court.  In addition, Ms. Handley has represented Deloitte LLP in a significant regulatory proceeding.
  • Government Investigations.  Ms. Handley is a member of teams representing several clients in connection with investigations conducted by government agencies, including the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Federal Trade Commission.
Siobhan Handley
  • J.D., New York University School of Law, 1994
  • B.A., cum laude, College of the Holy Cross, 1990
  • New York State Bar Association

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