Jon W. Monson is a partner in Cable Huston’s Litigation, Appellate, and Internal Investigations practice groups. Jon represents clients in all aspects of state and federal civil litigation, including high-stakes commercial litigation, mediation, and arbitration. He has also briefed and argued numerous appeals and petitions for review before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and Oregon Court of Appeals, among other appellate courts. His clients include individuals, public and private companies, and governmental and quasi-governmental entities. Jon also served for several years as Chair of the Firm’s Management Committee and now serves as the Firm’s General Counsel.
In addition to his client work, Jon has been appointed by the Oregon Supreme Court to serve as a pro tem circuit court judge for Multnomah County Circuit Court. The Oregon Supreme Court also appointed Jon to serve as a member of the Oregon State Bar Disciplinary Board, the body charged with deciding contested disciplinary matters involving Oregon attorneys. Jon also volunteers his time as a member of the Oregon State Bar Civil Jury Instruction Committee. And he previously served as a longstanding member (and Chair, in 2020) of the Oregon State Bar’s Legal Ethics Committee.
Jon’s practice focuses on representing plaintiffs and defendants in complex business and commercial disputes that arise in various contexts, including:
- Breach of Contract
- Breach of Fiduciary Duty
- Partnership Dissolution
- Shareholder and Securities Litigation
- Professional Malpractice and Legal Ethics
- State and Federal Environmental Clean-Up and Hazardous Substances
- Surety Defense
- Real Estate/Title/Escrow
- Sports and Entertainment
Jon also has unique expertise in managing comprehensive internal investigations for businesses and public entities. Jon’s internal investigation practice frequently involves sensitive and complex investigations of potential wrongdoing. Jon has experience managing the efficient collection and analysis of large quantities of hard-copy and electronic evidence on short time frames; planning for and conducting sensitive witness interviews; documenting and reporting interview and investigation findings (verbally or in writing) to boards of directors, audit committees, public entities, and criminal/civil regulators; analyzing complicated attorney-client privilege issues; and coordinating public relations issues.
Prior to joining Cable Huston in 2010, Jon worked as an associate at O’Melveny & Myers LLP in New York and Los Angeles, a firm consistently recognized by The American Lawyer as having one of the most prestigious litigation departments in the country. At O’Melveny, Jon focused his practice on complex civil litigation and appeals, criminal and regulatory investigations, and internal corporate investigations. During that time, he also served as a Supervising Attorney for the UCLA Law School Appellate Advocacy Clinic.
Business and Commercial Litigation
- Represented RSG Forest Products, Inc., one of the Pacific Northwest’s largest lumber manufactures, against shareholder oppression claims brought in Oregon and Washington state court seeking over $50 million in damages.
- Represented the Special Committee of Sun Times Media Group in highly-publicized internal investigation and subsequent federal civil prosecution of hundreds of millions of dollars in fraud claims brought against former CEO Conrad Black and other senior executives.
- Successfully defended California’s largest public agency retirement fund trust administrator in California Attorney General investigation and subsequent qui tam litigation related to handling of over $150 million in unclaimed retirement funds.
- Obtained favorable verdict as member of trial team representing individual in six-week jury trial arising from local artist’s breach of multi-million dollar oral loan agreement.
- Obtained complete dismissal of claims and recovery of all attorneys’ fees for Developers Surety and Indemnity Co. (a division of AmTrust Financial) in declaratory relief lawsuit filed by a Eugene, Oregon developer seeking recovery of millions of dollars in damages on subdivision development bond.
- Represented subsidiary of Precision Castparts in a multi-million civil litigation with Portland General Electric related to power outages at Precision’s manufacturing facilities.
- Secured multi-million-dollar award for Fortune 500 company after month-long JAMS arbitration on complex professional malpractice claim related to a subcontractor’s negligent handling of a breach of contract claim in an earlier adversary proceeding in bankruptcy court.
- Secured judgment and permanent injunction for Eugene Water & Electric Board (EWEB) in complex easement dispute with local landowner related to maintenance of fish return channel on the McKenzie River.
- Won reversal on appeal as lead appellate counsel for Patrick Allen, Director of the Oregon Health Authority, in long-standing dispute between FamilyCare, Inc. and the Oregon Health Authority related to FamilyCare’s exit from the coordinated care market in 2018. Ruling resulted in dismissal of $50 million First Amendment retaliation claim against Director Allen. See Allen v. FamilyCare, Inc., No. 18-35891, 12 Fed App’x (9th Cir 2020).
- Representing the Oregon Land Title Association (OLTA) as amicus curiae in ongoing appeal related to the applicability of Oregon’s civil RICO statute to title and escrow services.
- Representing PNW Metals Recycling and Pacific Recycling, Inc. in a petition for review of administrative rule adopted by the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality related to auto dismantlers.
- Frequently serve as court-appointed counsel for indigent parties through the Ninth Circuit’s Pro Bono Appellate Program, including in appeals on Section 1983, Bivens, and other constitutional claims.
- Argued and won appeal in complex easement dispute related to fish return channel on the McKenzie River, Eugene Water & Electric Board v. Miller, 290 Or App 721 (2018).
- Argued and won appeal in longstanding retaliatory tax dispute between Stewart Title Guaranty Co. and State of Oregon’s Department of Consumer and Business Affairs, Stewart Title Guaranty Co. v. State of Oregon, 272 Or App 138 (2015).
- Argued and won appeal for AmeriTitle, Inc. in title insurance dispute, Haveman et al. v. AmeriTitle Inc., et al, Oregon Court of Appeals Case No. A15398.
- Argued and won reversal on appeal as lead counsel for indigent prisoner in Thomas v. Ponder, 611 F.3d 1144 (9th Cir. 2010), a seminal prisoner rights case involving Eighth Amendment claims arising from prison’s failure to provide adequate outdoor exercise.
Legal Ethics and Professional Malpractice
- Frequently advise lawyers on legal ethics and attorney-client privilege issues.
- Represent lawyers and law firms in defending professional malpractice and other related claims as member of the Oregon Professional Liability Fund’s Defense Counsel Panel.
Sports and Media-Related Litigation
- Represented the Portland Trail Blazers and Rip City Management in various confidential litigation matters, including complex arbitrations and grievance proceedings before the Commissioner of the National Basketball Association (NBA).
- Successfully defended officers of CenterStaging Corp., a well-known rehearsal studio in Burbank, California against securities fraud claims in federal court.
Internal Investigations & Compliance
- Managed transnational internal investigation for Special Committee of Cale Group AB, a Swedish company, arising from bribery allegations related to the City of Portland’s parking meter contract with a former Cale distributor. Conducted numerous witness interviews and oversaw collection of electronic and documentary evidence from the United States, Canada, and Sweden. Coordinated closely with the Portland City’s Attorney’s Office to disclose findings of investigation and discuss remedial action.
- Managed internal investigation for defense contractor arising from Navy Criminal Investigative Services (NCIS) subpoena related to alleged misreporting of OSHA violations in bid documents.
- Managed internal investigation for Air Force defense contractor related to allegations of False Claims violations arising from excessive time entries by employees on a large time and materials contract.
- Participated in numerous internal investigations of public companies related to stock options back-dating and other allegations of financial fraud.
- Managed internal investigation for Fortune 500 company concerning whistleblower allegations of environmental violations that arose during internal compliance audit.
- Managed internal investigation for large healthcare company concerning retaliation claims against former compliance officer.
- Participated in internal investigation for one of the world’s largest investment banking firms regarding alleged violations of anti-money laundering regulations.
- Represented multiple investment advisory businesses in highly-publicized New York Attorney General investigation related to pay-to-play allegations in state pension fund.
Publications and Speaking Engagements
- Speaker, Ethical Considerations: Ethics issues That May Arise When Dealing with Prospective and Past Clients, Multnomah Bar Association (Dec. 2019)
- Speaker, Tripartite Ethics Issues / Fee Disputes, Oregon Professional Liability Fund Defense Panel Conference (Aug. 2019)
- Co-Author, Attorney Advocacy and Ethics in Arbitration, Chapter 12 of the Oregon State Bar CLE BarBook on Alternate Dispute Resolution (2019 ed.)
- Co-Author, Arbitrator Ethics, Chapter 13 of the Oregon State Bar CLE BarBook on Alternate Dispute Resolution (2019 ed.)
- Speaker, Summary Judgment Motions, Multnomah County Bar Association Young Litigators Forum (2016, 2017, 2018)
- Author, When the Law Provides Repayment Terms: The Perils of Oral Loan Agreements, Oregon State Bar Debtor-Creditor Newsletter (Winter 2012)
- Author, The Young Lawyer’s Corner: Internal Investigation Tips for Junior Attorneys, Criminal Litigation (ABA Fall 2009)
- Author, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Handbook, (O’Melveny & Myers 6th ed. 2009) (co-authored chapter on Internal Investigations)
- Speaker, Compliance Programs, O’Melveny & Myers LLP White Collar Defense and Corporate Investigations Training Series, Los Angeles, CA (May 2008)
- Author, 10 Ways to Retain Confidentiality During (and After) an Internal Investigation: A Strategy for Minimizing the Damage of Disclosure, Criminal Litigation (American Bar Association Spring 2007)
- Speaker, Putting Lawyers on the Defensive: When Law Firms Get Indicted, ABA Section of Litigation Annual Conference, San Antonio, TX (April 2007)
- Author, Tribal Immunity from Process: Limiting the Government’s Power to Enforce Search Warrants and Subpoenas on American Indian Land, 56 Rutgers L. Rev. 271 (2003)
Awards & Recognition
• “Super Lawyer” (Oregon Super Lawyers, 2022)
• “Rising Star” (Oregon Super Lawyers, 2013-2020)
• “Faces of the List” (Portland Business Journal, Jan. 2015)
• “Outstanding Subcommittee Chair” (American Bar Association, 2009)
• “Rising Star” (JAMS Arbitration Service, 2009)
• “Empire State Counsel Award” (New York State Bar, 2008)
• “Outstanding Newsletter Editor” (American Bar Association, 2007)
- Multnomah County Circuit Court Judge Pro Tempore (2018-present)
- Member, Oregon State Bar Disciplinary Board (2021-present)
- Oregon State Bar Legal Ethics Committee, (Chair, 2020; Secretary, 2019; Member, 2015-2020)
- Member, Oregon State Bar Uniform Civil Jury Instruction Committee (2021-present)
- Arbitrator, Oregon State Bar Fee Dispute Resolution Program (2019-present)
- Arbitrator, Multnomah County Mandatory Arbitration Program (2011-present)
- Participant, Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals Pro Bono Appellate Program (2009-present)
- Member, Multnomah County Bar Association
- Member, Clackamas County Bar Association
- Member, Federal Bar Association
- Editor-in-Chief, Criminal Litigation, (American Bar Association, 2008-2010)
- Supervising Attorney, UCLA Law School Appellate Advocacy Clinic (2009-2010)