Brian R. Matsui

Brian R. Matsui


Stanford University (A.B., 1995)
Stanford Law School (J.D., 1999)

Bar Admissions

District of Columbia


Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, U.S. Supreme Court (2002-2003)
Hon. Pamela A. Rymer, U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit (2000-2001)
Hon. David F. Levi, U.S. District Court, E.D. California (1999-2000)

Brian Matsui is a partner in Morrison & Foerster LLP’s Appellate and Supreme Court Practice Group. He represents clients from a diverse set of industries in appellate litigation in both federal and state appellate courts.

Mr. Matsui has substantial experience in the federal courts of appeals, having represented clients in appeals in almost every federal appellate court.

Mr. Matsui has briefed and argued many cases in the Federal Circuit. In particular, Mr. Matsui has significant experience on appeals to the Federal Circuit from decisions from the Patent Trial and Appeal Board. He has argued patent appeals on behalf of companies in varied industries including mobile device manufacturers, pharmaceutical companies, medical device companies, memory manufacturers, movie studios, and software companies.

Additionally, Mr. Matsui has extensive experience arguing and briefing appeals in the Ninth Circuit on a wide range of issues. Recently, he has represented leading financial services companies in appeals throughout the nation and prevailed in a D.C. Circuit appeal against the Securities and Exchange Commission involving the retroactivity of certain provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act.

Mr. Matsui has been involved in more than 35 cases before the Supreme Court of the United States. He has had a lead role in the briefing of merits cases involving the interpretation of the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act of 1994, the Bankruptcy Code, the Patent Act, and the Dormant Commerce Clause.

The National Law Journal named Mr. Matsui a “Minority 40 under 40,” and he has been recommended by Chambers USA and Legal 500 US in the areas of Supreme Court and Appellate Litigation. Clients have described Mr. Matsui as “a ‘terrific’ practitioner with a ‘warm and enthusiastic’ approach to matters.” (Chambers USA 2015)

Mr. Matsui also dedicates significant time to the less fortunate in pro bono matters. He led the Morrison & Foerster team that was co-counsel for petitioner Terrance Graham in Graham v. Florida, 130 S. Ct. 2011 (2010)—in a successful Eighth Amendment challenge to Florida’s imposition of a “life without the possibility of parole” sentence to a juvenile offender convicted of a non-homicide crime. He also successfully represented a putative class of foster care children in a high-profile abuse and neglect case in the Ninth Circuit in Henry A. v. Willden, 678 F.3d 991 (9th Cir. 2012).

Prior to entering private practice, Mr. Matsui clerked for Justice Anthony M. Kennedy of the Supreme Court of the United States, Judge Pamela Ann Rymer of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, and Judge David F. Levi of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of California.

Mr. Matsui previously chaired (from 2012-2015) the ABA's seven-person Standing Committee for Amicus Curiae Briefs, which oversees preparation of ABA briefs for filing before the Supreme Court and other courts. He is currently a member of the amicus curiae committee for the American Intellectual Property Law Association, and he was the co-chair of the amicus curiae brief committee for the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association. Mr. Matsui previously served a three-year term as an Appellate Lawyer Representative for the Ninth Circuit, having been selected by the Court of Appeals for that position. Mr. Matsui had served as a board member for the D.C. Circuit Historical Society.

While in law school, Mr. Matsui served as managing editor of Volume 51 of the Stanford Law Review, and was elected to the Order of the Coif.

The National Law Journal named Mr. Matsui as a "Minority 40 under 40" (2011), and he is recommended by Chambers USA in the areas of Supreme Court and Appellate Litigation (2011–2015) and Patent Litigation (2011). He was recommended in Legal 500 US 2017 in the area of Dispute Resolution: Appellate. He was also selected as an “IP Star” by Managing Intellectual Property’s World IP Survey 2018–2019.

"Clients and market sources consider Brian Matsui a ‘terrific’ practitioner with a ‘warm and enthusiastic’ approach to matters.”
(Chambers USA 2015)

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