We Fight Against Injustice – Wherever It May Arise

WE FIGHT AGAINST INJUSTICE – WHEREVER IT MAY ARISE

Wilmer J. Harris

Attorney Wilmer J. Harris headshot

Partner

Contact info:

Biography:

Wilmer J. Harris graduated from Stanford University in 1986 with an A.B. degree in Economics, with Distinction, and Honors in Humanities. He was elected to membership in Phi Beta Kappa in 1985.

Mr. Harris graduated from UCLA School of Law in 1990, earning Order of the Coif honors and American Jurisprudence Awards in Evidence, Moot Court and Remedies.

Mr. Harris worked as Law Clerk to the Honorable David W. Williams for one year after his law school graduation. He entered private practice, thereafter practicing business litigation for two years with the law firms Kaye, Scholer, Fierman, Hays & Handler and Blanc, Williams, Johnston & Kronstadt.

In January 1994, Mr. Harris joined the Law Offices of Johnnie L. Cochran, Jr. His practice area changed dramatically as he began representing clients in civil rights cases, including Reginald Denny. In August 1995, Mr. Harris joined the firm (currently named Schonbrun Seplow Harris Hoffman & Zeldes) where he has concentrated primarily on the representation of employees in disputes with employers and individuals in civil rights cases.

In November 1999, Mr. Harris opened a satellite office in the Pasadena area where he remains the resident partner. Mr. Harris speaks regularly on employment law issues for the State Bar of California, Los Angeles County Bar Association and California Employment Lawyers Association.

Mr. Harris has garnered several settlements and judgments in excess of $1 million in individual civil rights and qui tam cases. Mr. Harris has also recovered many multimillion dollar settlements in wage and hour class actions. Mr. Harris served as co-lead counsel on a $42 million settlement on behalf of a class of residential real estate appraisers.

Mr. Harris has served on the Board of Directors of the California Employment Lawyers Association and Disability Rights Legal Center. In 2005, he was selected to sit on the California State Bar Labor & Employment Executive Committee and served through 2013. He served as the Chair of the State Bar Labor & Employment Section for the 2010-2011 term. Mr. Harris has been selected as a "Southern California Super Lawyer" by Los Angeles Magazine for several years.

In May 2017, Mr. Harris secured a jury verdict of over $5 million for which he was nominated for Consumer Attorneys Association Los Angeles' Trial Lawyer of the Year Award in 2017. He practices extensively on behalf of whistleblowers, both in individual retaliation cases as well as complex cases under the False Claims Act, serving as relator's counsel in a number of qui tam actions. Mr. Harris and co-counsel have received seven figure recoveries in such cases aimed at rooting out fraud against the government.

 

Practice Areas:

  • Civil Rights

Past Positions:

  • The Hon. David W. Williams, Law Clerk
  • Kaye, Scholer, Fierman, Hays & Handler
  • Blanc, Williams, Johnston & Kronstadt
  • Law Offices of Johnnie L. Cochran

Education:

  • University of California at Los Angeles School of Law, Los Angeles, California
    • 1990
    • Honors: Order of the Coif
    • Honors: American Jurisprudence Awards in Evidence
    • Honors: Moot Court and Remedies
  • Stanford University
    • A.B. - 1986
    • Honors: With Distinction
    • Honors: Honors in Humanities
    • Major: Economics

Classes/Seminars:

  • 30th Annual Labor and Employment Law Symposium: Getting Choosy: How to Find (and be) the Right Neutral for the Job, Los Angeles County Bar Association, 03/31/2010 to 03/31/2010
  • Panel Presentation, Loyola Law School, 04/14/2010 to 04/14/2010
  • Wage & Hour Annual Update, California State Bar Annual Meeting, 09/24/2010 to 09/24/2010
  • Ensuring Equal Access to Legal Services for Clients with Disabilities, (CELA) - 2010 Annual CELA Conference, 10/01/2010 to 10/01/2010
  • The Golden Age of Golden Parachutes, Langston Law Institute, 12/03/2010 to 12/03/2010
  • The Perils of PAGA: Representation under the Private Attorney General Act, California State Bar Labor and Employment Section, 03/13/2009 to 03/13/2009
  • California False Claims Act and Whistleblower Cases, NELA, 06/26/2009 to 06/26/2009
  • Eliminating Barriers for Lawyers with Disabilities, California State Bar Labor and Employment Section, 02/08/2008 to 02/08/2008
  • 28th Annual Labor and Employment Law Symposium: Year in Review, Los Angeles County Bar Association, 03/06/2008 to 03/06/2008
  • Workplace Privacy: Real or Imagined, California State Bar Labor and Employment Section, 11/01/2008 to 11/01/2008
  • Panel Presentation, Loyola Law School, 11/20/2008 to 11/20/2008

Professional Associations:

  • California Employment Lawyers Association (CELA), Member of the Board of Directors, 2007 to 2014
  • Disability Rights Legal Center (DRLC), Member of the Board of Directors
  • California State Bar Labor & Employment Section
  • National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA)
  • Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles (CAALA)
  • Los Angeles County Bar Association (LACBA)
  • John M. Langston Bar Association
  • California State Bar Labor & Employment Executive Committee, Chair, 2010 to 2011
  • California State Bar Labor & Employment Executive Committee, 2005 to 2013

Honors:

  • "Southern California Super Lawyer", Los Angeles Magazine for Several Years
  • Phi Betta Kappa
  • SuperLawyer, 10+ Consecutive Years, Labor and Employment Law
  • Nominee, Trial Lawyer of the Year, Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles in 2017