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Robert G. Knaier


Bob Knaier has substantial experience in all aspects of civil litigation, including trial and appellate work. He maintains a diverse practice, representing plaintiffs and defendants in complex business and commercial cases, personal injury matters, and appeals. After law school, Bob clerked for Judge Richard C. Wesley of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. He then practiced for several years at Latham & Watkins LLP. While there, Bob litigated cases involving allegations of tortious interference with contract, securities fraud, consumer fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, and corporate fraud. He also spent considerable time defending mass torts, developing an expertise in working with scientific evidence and expert witnesses. Bob then practiced at a preeminent plaintiffs' law firm in San Diego, representing clients in serious personal injury cases, mass tort and product liability actions, and commercial torts through all stages of litigation, including jury trial. Throughout his career, Bob also has maintained an active appellate practice, representing clients at the California Supreme Court, the California Courts of Appeal, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

In addition to maintaining a busy law practice, Bob is actively involved in the local and national legal communities. He is a long-time member of the William B. Enright Inn of Court; is a past member of the Association of Business Trial Lawyers' Board of Governors; previously served as Chair of the San Diego County Bar Association's Lawyer Referral & Information Service Committee; is the Evidence Column Editor for Trial Bar News, the journal of the Consumer Attorneys of San Diego; and is an Adjunct Professor in the "STEPPS" program at California Western School of Law, where he teaches second-year law students practical skills and professional ethics. From 2016 to 2018, Bob was a member of the governing Council of the American Bar Association's Section of Science & Technology Law; and he currently is an Associate Editor of the Section's quarterly journal, The SciTech Lawyer, and Co-Chair of the Section's Scientific Evidence Committee.

Bob also regularly volunteers his time to mentor students and young attorneys, and to provide pro bono legal services to those in need. His mentoring has included serving as a scorer for the San Diego County High School Mock Trial Competition; speaking to pre-law students at the University of California, San Diego; and speaking to law students and volunteering to judge moot court competitions at the University of San Diego School of Law, California Western School of Law, and Thomas Jefferson School of Law. Bob's pro bono legal representations include having successfully represented an individual seeking release from detention by the Department of Homeland Security; providing research, advice, and litigation support to the Animal Legal Defense Fund; and having successfully defended an appeal on behalf of a San Diego housing developer that provides assisted-living services to the homeless and mentally ill.

In his free time, Bob enjoys riding and working on his motorcycles-he was once a professional motorcycle mechanic-and spending time with his wife, Michelle, and many pets.


  • Homeopathy on Trial: Allen v. Hyland's, Inc. and a Failure of Evidentiary Gatekeeping, 57 Jurimetrics J. 361-396 (2017).
  • “Not Merely Specious, but Nonsensical”: Lessons in Law and Professionalism in Cypress Semiconductor Corp. v. Maxim Integrated Products, Inc., ABTL San Diego Report, Vol. XXII, No. 3 (Fall 2015).
  • The Perilous Claim of Lost Business Profits, Consumer Attorneys of San Diego Trial Bar News, Vol. 38, Issue 8 (October 2015) (with Ian Fusselman).
  • Watch What You Say (and Do): The Use of Settlement Negotiations and Mediation Conduct to Prove Bad Faith Under California's Uniform Trade Secrets Act, 50 CAL. W. L. REV. 1 (2013-2014).
  • A Gatekeeper Embraced: Expert Opinion Testimony and the Long Road from Daubert to Sargon, California Litigation, Vol. 26, No. 3 (2013).
  • Providing Materials to the Expert, in LITIGATORS ON EXPERTS: STRATEGIES FOR MANAGING EXPERT WITNESSES FROM RETENTION THROUGH TRIAL, ABA Section of Litigation (2010) (with Cynthia H. Cwik and L. David Russell).
  • Are Cigarettes Defective in Design?: California and New York Diverge in Approach and Result, New York State Bar Journal, Vol. 81, No. 1 (January 2009).
  • Keeping It In-House: Guidance to General Counsel on How to Stay Out of Court, in PREVENTIVE LAW AND PROBLEM SOLVING: LAWYERING FOR THE FUTURE, Vandeplas Publishing, Thomas D. Barton, ed. (2009).
  • Expert Evidence in the Ninth Circuit, in SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE REVIEW, MONOGRAPH NO. 8: ADMISSIBILITY AND USE OF EXPERT EVIDENCE IN THE COURTROOM, ABA Section of Science & Technology Law (2008) (with Cynthia H. Cwik).
  • Stevenson v. CB Richard Ellis: The California Court of Appeal Expands the Tort of Interference with Prospective Economic Advantage, ABTL San Diego Report, Vol. XIII, No. 3 (Summer 2006) (with Ken Fitzgerald).
  • Associate Editor, SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE REVIEW, MONOGRAPH NO. 7: CURRENT ISSUES AT THE CROSSROADS OF SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY AND THE LAW, ABA Section of Science & Technology Law, Cynthia H. Cwik and Helen E. Witt, eds. (2006).
  • Litigation Avoidance and Prevention, in BUSINESS AND COMMERCIAL LITIGATION IN FEDERAL COURTS, ABA Section of Litigation, Robert L. Haig, ed. (2005) (with Michael J. Weaver).
  • An Informed Choice Duty to Instruct? Liriano, Burke, and the Practical Limits of Subtle Jurisprudence, 88 CORNELL L. REV. 814 (2003) (awarded the Herbert R. Reif Prize as the Note in the Cornell Law Review that "best exemplified the skillful and lucid use of the English language in writing about the law").

  • Challenging Experts: Excluding Expert Testimony Under Sargon Enterprises v. University of Southern California: Mock argument presentation to William B. Enright American Inn of Court (March 10, 2016).
  • Build Your Legal Career and Brand: Panel Discussion at the University of San Diego School of Law, for the American Bar Association Section of Science and Technology Law, ABA Mid-Year Meeting (February 3, 2016).
  • How to Get & Keep Clients: Steps to Streamlining Your Intake Processes: Panel Discussion, San Diego County Bar Association (December 9, 2015).
  • Techniques and Ethics of Persuading Juries, Judges, and Each Other: Lessons from Neuroscience and Experimental Psychology: Presentation to California Western School of Law STEPPS Program (December 9, 2015).
  • It's a Buyer's World: Panel Discussion, Association of Business Trial Lawyers' 42nd Annual Seminar, Countdown: The Digital World Confronts an Analog Profession (October 2, 2015).
  • Implicit Bias 101: What All Lawyers Need to Know: Panelist for Continuing Legal Education Webinar, American Bar Association Section of Science and Technology Law (August 31, 2015). 
  • Modest Means Orientation & Training: Training presentation for attorneys participating in San Diego County Bar Association's program for providing discounted legal services to clients of “modest means” (October 29, 2014).
  • Ethics in an Online World: Team leader for presentation to William B. Enright American Inn of Court (March 20, 2014).
  • The Neuroscience and Psychology of Attention and Decisionmaking: Presentation to William B. Enright American Inn of Court (March 21, 2013).
  • Expert Witnesses: Selection, Preparation, and Challenging the Opposition: Continuing Legal Education presentation to the University of San Diego Paralegal Program (July 25, 2011).
  • The Brain on Trial: Neuroscience Evidence in the Courtroom: Mock trial participant at 2010 Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science: Bridging Science and Society (February 20, 2010).
  • Liability for Product "Defects": Presentation to ASM International, San Diego Chapter (February 26, 2009).
  • Attorneys' Fees: Procedural, Practical and Ethical Issues: Panel Discussion, William B. Enright American Inn of Court (November 18, 2008).
  • Ways of Knowing Things: The Epistemologies of Law, Social Science, Science, and Medicine: Workshop for Joint Master's Program in Health Law, California Western School of Law and University of California, San Diego (November 11, 2008).
  • Robert G. Knaier

    Tel: 619.241.4810
    Fax: 619.955.5318
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    402 W Broadway, Suite 1400
    San Diego, CA 92101

    • University of California, San Diego, B.A., summa cum laude (1999)
    • Cornell Law School, J.D., magna cum laude, Order of the Coif (2003)
    Professional Affiliations
    • American Bar Association
    • California Bar
    • San Diego County Bar Association
    • New York State Bar Association
    • Association of Business Trial Lawyers
    • Consumer Attorneys of San Diego
    • William B. Enright American Inn of Court
    • Casa Cornelia Law Center Inn of Court
    Bar Admissions
    • California (2004)
    • New York (2004)
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