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Frank F. Sommers
Frank Sommers is a former IBM Systems Engineer turned trial attorney. He specializes in taking over complex cases close to trial and winning them. His large case trial experience has made him fluent in the complexities of complex corporate financial transactions. This background in computer systems and business finance makes him highly qualified in translating complex cases to lay juries. That same experience allows him to control the problems presented by high-volume e-discovery cases without his clients incurring undue litigation costs.
Mr. Sommers is a leading litigator in the field of software-related copyright, trademark and intellectual property litigation. Whether acting to recover inventors’ share of their creations, or preventing the theft of trade secrets, he can combine technical expertise with trial presence and achieve the needed result for our clients.
Mr. Sommers has handled a broad, diverse range of complex business litigation matters, successfully taking complicated cases to juries throughout the Bay Area. For example, his work has included prosecuting a large copyright infringement claim for a start-up software company, resulting a multi-million dollar settlement. He has also represented inventors seeking to enforce intellectual property and partnership rights, and recently obtained a high-seven figure settlement for his plaintiff clients.
Mr. Sommers has also represented such diverse clients as a Russian Orthodox nunnery in its secession from the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad, a battle focusing on control of the nunnery’s valuable real property, and an injured operator in a glass-bottle foundry in a significant products liability case. Mr. Sommers also specializes in executive wrongful termination litigation and has secured a high six-figure jury award for a wrongfully-terminated senior executive of a medical device manufacturer.
As a former IBM Systems Engineer, Mr. Sommers is particularly at home with disputes involving systems development and integration problems, and has represented a start-up middleware developer seeking to recover for over-installation of the licensed software. Mr. Sommers has also recently represented a major, multi-national insurer battling its well-known software provider over failure of business control software on which the insurer spent millions both in contract costs and internal integration efforts.
Mr. Sommers is an expert in the field of electronic evidence presentations of documents, witness testimony, and trial graphics design. He is regularly consulted by other law firms seeking to improve their trial presentations. He has taught extensively as a clinical instructor at seminars and presentations of the National Institute for Trial Advocacy around the country. For the last several years, Mr. Sommers has volunteered as a trial practice seminar instructor at Tomsk State University Law Faculty, in central Russia.
Before founding Sommers & Schwartz LLP, Mr. Sommers was in private practice for ten years and also served as trial counsel for Bank of America's Office of General Counsel. During that time he tried matters involving claims of software theft, lender liability and real-estate-development fraud. He litigated matters ranging from computer servicing errors in a multi-billion dollar student loan pool to earth movement insurance coverage on a seventy unit condominium development in Ventura, California.
Mr. Sommers has lived abroad and speaks German, Russian and French. He draws on this experience in advising domestic and European clients on various corporate and financial matters.
GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY LAW CENTER
Juris Doctor, cum laude,1982
B.A., Government, minor in Russian Language, 1977
Activities & Affiliations
• San Francisco Lawyers Club Inn of Court, Board Member & President (Past)
• Intensive Advocacy Program at University of San Francisco, Instructor for Trial Practice
• Tomsk State University and the University of St. Petersburg, Instructor for Trial Practice (former)
Sommers & Schwartz LLP serves as of counsel @ to Bartko, Zankel,Bunzel -- an arrangement which increases the size of complex business cases that both firms can take on, allowing Sommers & Schwartz LLP to handle large scale matters that require significant work at the associate level.