Kathy O'Connor is a litigation partner in Orrick's Complex Litigation and Dispute Resolution Group and is a co-chair of the firm's life sciences practice. Kathy focuses on complex disputes involving life sciences and consumer products companies.  

Kathy's practice focuses on complex product liability and commercial claims, consumer fraud class actions, licensing and co-development disputes, and government investigations, primarily for branded pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device companies, as well as consumer products companies. She is regularly called upon to advise on litigation and compliance strategy, particularly in complex matters that involve concurrent civil and government actions. She also consults with clients in their effort to manage and mitigate risk. Kathy brings a unique perspective to Orrick's practice, having previously served as an in-house lawyer at Merck.

Prior to joining Orrick, Kathy was a litigation partner at Weil Gotshal. She is regularly recognized as a leading practitioner by lawyer ranking entities such as Euromoney Expert Guides' Women in Business Law and The Legal 500, which singled out her product liability and mass torts defense work.

    • Defended pharmaceutical and medical device companies in hundreds of product liability lawsuits
    • Defended pharmaceutical companies in dozens of consumer fraud class action cases
    • Participated in a multi-year DOJ investigation into allegations of off-label promotion
    • Represented and advised life sciences companies in disputes involving joint collaboration and development agreements
    • Conducted several internal investigations relating to whistleblower allegations of off-label promotion
    • Provided strategic advice to a major pharmaceutical company on managing risk associated with FDA inquiries relating to a significant product and responsibility for ensuing litigation
    • Participated in FCPA investigations on behalf of pharmaceutical companies
    • Prepared key company executives for testimony in a series of government investigations and inquiries of the company
    • Led expert discovery for consumer products company in complex consumer fraud class action
    • Advised European life sciences companies on managing litigation risk and avoiding fraud and abuse risk
    • Advised many mobile medical technologies companies on risk and marketing issues