Philip T. Besirof

Philip T. Besirof


University of California, San Diego (B.A., 1993)
University of California, Hastings College of the Law (J.D., 1996)

Bar Admissions


Philip is the Managing Partner of Morrison & Foerster’s San Francisco office and a partner in our Securities Litigation, Enforcement, and White–Collar Defense Group. He is a problem solver and go–to advisor for companies and their directors and officers in the areas of securities class actions, shareholder derivative suits, and regulator inquiries and investigations. Philip has a long track record of securing successful outcomes, including winning at trial, winning at the pleading stage and on summary judgment, and prevailing on appeal.

His clients represent a broad range of industries, including:

  • Computer hardware
  • Consumer products
  • Energy
  • Financial services
  • Gaming
  • Technology
  • Telecommunications

Philip has successfully defended dozens of firms and individuals including Zynga, Oracle, Infineon, and notably JDSU and its former executives where he contributed to the complete defense verdict in a securities class action jury trial seeking $20 billion in damages for alleged securities fraud and insider trading.

In addition to his practice, Philip serves as Chair of the Risk Management Committee and Deputy General Counsel to the Firm, setting the strategic direction on risk management issues.

He is the immediate past Chair of the board of the San Francisco AIDS Foundation, a nonprofit organization founded in 1982 to provide education and treatment.


  • Recommended for Dispute Resolution: Securities Litigation – Legal 500 US 2018

In re Zynga Securities Litigation
Represent Zynga Inc. and its directors and officers in a federal securities class action, a state class action, and various derivative actions pending in California and Delaware.

In re Capital One Derivative Litigation
Represent Capital One and its officers and directors in derivative litigation in the Eastern District of Virginia.

In re Countrywide Financial Corporation Securities Litigation
Represented former outside directors of Countrywide Financial Corp. in various securities class actions and shareholder derivative actions. Most of these actions have settled, with full releases of our clients, and in none of those cases did the firm’s clients pay any settlement.

In re First Solar Securities Litigation
Represent First Solar and its directors and officers in a federal securities class action pending in the District of Arizona.

In re Oracle Securities Derivative Litigation
Represented Oracle Corporation in derivative actions and “books and records” action in state and federal courts in California.

In re Infineon Securities Litigation
Represented Infineon and its officers in securities class action. Obtained dismissal of 90 percent of class (all foreign shareholders) and settled with remaining 10 percent of the class (U.S. shareholders).

In re JDSU Securities Litigation
Obtained a complete jury defense verdict on behalf of JDSU and three former executives in a class action seeking $20 billion for alleged securities fraud and insider trading.

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