Constance Yu


Constance Yu concentrates her practice on business tort issues including disputes over complex commercial transactions, banking practices, intellectual property and real property rights, unfair competition, false advertising, and employment matters. She has handled a wide variety of other commercial disputes such as copyright/trademark enforcement actions and defense against infringement claims, trade secret litigation, disputes arising out of e-commerce businesses, defamation, securities cases, professional liability, and RICO litigation. Constance regularly advises and defends companies in threatened enforcement actions, litigation and risk management involving California Proposition 65 matters.

Constance also advises clients in criminal investigations involving corporations, former government officials and private individuals in financial and other business disputes. Her experience includes representation of individuals, institutions, and their officers and directors in white collar criminal matters in the United States and abroad.

Her clients range from individual entrepreneurs, professional athletes, and closely-held family trusts to private and public entities, blue chip companies and multinational corporations.

Constance’s civil trial experience includes prosecuting business tort and defamation claims, creditors’ rights claims, enforcing trust assignments, and defending clients in professional liability insurance coverage disputes, business tort claims, trust and estate contests, sexual harassment claims, premises liability actions, and employment contract claims. Constance’s recent jury trial wins include a plaintiff’s breach of contract verdict (2013) and award of attorneys’ fees against a former Brazilian minister of agriculture relating to a transnational biofuel joint venture with a U.S. company. Iguacu, Inc. v. Antonio Mano Filho Cabrera, U.S.D.C. (N.D. Cal.) Case No. 3:09-cv-00380, upheld on appeal, No. 13-17544 (9th Cir. 2016). Her criminal trial experience includes defense of a former head-of-state against charges of RICO; money laundering and transportation of stolen fine art; and defense of a financier against bank fraud claims.

Constance has helped her clients obtain substantial monetary judgments with attorneys fees awards, and helped secure the enforcement of the judgments, including a multi-million judgment and attorneys fees for her professional NFL player client in an action involving enforcement of the Miller Ayala Athlete Agents Act.

Constance’s legal representation of her clients also includes civil appellate and writs practice. In addition to her litigation and trial skills, Constance has represented clients in arbitrations and mediations concerning broker-investor disputes, employee stock issuance disputes, partner and joint venture disputes, and complex business disputes involving domestic and cross-border transactions.

She previously served as the co-chair of the Advocacy Committee for the American Bar Association’s Section of Dispute Resolution, and currently serves on the Executive Committee of The Lawyers’ Club of San Francisco’s Inn of Court, and is a past President of the Inn. Ms. Yu also serves as a mediator and an early neutral evaluator on the U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, panel of neutrals.

Recognized as a Northern California Super Lawyers: 2011-2020.

Selected as one of the Top Women Attorneys in Northern California by Super Lawyers: 2013 – 2020.

Recognized by America’s Top 100 High Stakes Litigators as one of the top 100 high stakes litigators for Northern California for 2019 and 2020.

Professional Affiliations and Community Involvement

  • United States District Court for the Northern District of California – Mediator and Neutral Evaluator on Northern District’s panel of neutrals, 2010 to present.
  • Former Co-Chair of the Advocacy Committee for the American Bar Association’s Section of Dispute Resolution, 2015 to 2019.
  • ABA DR Spring Conference April 2016 Program leader: Mediation Jujitsu — New Developments in Transforming Litigation Techniques into Successful Mediations and Other ADR Practices
  • Lawyers Club of San Francisco, Inn of Court – Executive Committee member, Past-President (2012-13); California Supreme Court Annual Luncheon Committee (2016, 2017).
  • Stanford Law School – Trial Advocacy Program and Federal Practice, Teacher 2003 – present.
  • Association of Women in Power – a Founding Circle member of the Association of Women in Power, a non-profit organization devoted to advancing the education of women professionals in the fields of energy, water and the environment.
  • Achenbach Graphic Arts Council (Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco), 2016-17, 2017-18 Chair.

Constance is a graduate of UC Berkeley and the American University Washington College of Law.