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About me

Sean M. Kneafsey is the founder of Kneafsey & Friend LLP.

Mr. Kneafsey is an intellectual property, real estate, and general commercial litigator. He has represented both plaintiffs and defendants on a wide variety of complex matters. Mr. Kneafsey has successfully obtained and defended against temporary restraining orders, preliminary injunctions, and has obtained favorable judgments both in arbitration and at trial.


Mr. Kneafsey’s intellectual property experience includes litigating patent, copyright, trademark, and trade secret matters. He is a Past President of the Los Angeles Intellectual Property Association and was previously on the Board of the LAIPLA for eight years.


Mr. Kneafsey’s real estate practice includes litigating partnership, purchase and sale agreement, leasing, and ownership disputes. He also advises clients regarding commercial leases. Mr. Kneafsey served for two years as an adjunct professor of real estate law at Southwestern University School of Law in Los Angeles.


Mr. Kneafsey was previously associated with the nationally recognized law firm of Hennigan, Bennett & Dorman. He maintains a close working relationship with the Hennigan firm, with whom he has acted as co-counsel on a wide variety of matters.


Mr. Kneafsey graduated cum laude from Santa Clara University School of Law where he was in the top 10% of his class. He was Managing Editor of the Santa Clara Law Review, member of the Moot Court Board, received several academic scholarships, and published the comment: The Fourth Amendment Rights Of Probationers: What Remains After Waiving Their Right To Be Free From Unreasonable Searches And Seizures?, 35 Santa Clara L. Rev. 1237 which was cited by the California Supreme Court in People v. Sanders, 31 Cal.4th 318, 329, (2003), as well as in numerous treatises on criminal and constitutional law including the Witkin Treatises.


Mr. Kneafsey was previously affiliated with the following firms: Cathcart, Collins & Kneafsey LLP - Partner (2005-2007); Palmer Lombardi Kneafsey & Donohue LLP - Partner (2004 – 2005); Hennigan Bennett & Dorman LLP - Associate (2000 –2003); Hancock, Rothert & Bunshoft - Associate (1997-2000); Gassett, Perry & Frank -Associate (1995 –1997).



  • Southern California Super Lawyer Rising Star 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008



  • All state and federal courts in California.




  • Past President, Los Angeles Intellectual Property Law Association

  • Association of Business Trial Lawyers

  • Association of Trial Lawyers of America

  • American Intellectual Property Law Association

  • Federal Circuit Bar Association

  • President, Irish American Bar Association

  • Los Angeles County Bar Association, Real Estate Section

  • Past Member of Board of Directors, Santa Clara School of Law Alumni Association




  • The Clergy Cases I, Judicial Council Coordination Proceeding 4286 (The Clergy Cases I, JCCP 4286), which involved over 550 cases filed against the Archdiocese of Los Angeles state-wide, all of which were coordinated in the Los Angeles Superior Court. Mr. Kneafsey was one of the lead attorneys managing and assisting in defense of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. He was responsible for litigating the majority of the 550 sexual abuse suits filed against the Archdiocese, and was the lead firm on Jaramillo v. Doe One, et al., LASC Case No. BC308295 (JCCP 4286, The Clergy Cases I), the first clergy abuse suit set for trial. The entire Clergy Cases I settlement occurred on the eve of the Jaramillo trial. The Jaramillo matter, as with most other of the Clergy Cases, involved the torts of negligence, negligent hiring, negligent supervision, and fraud, among others.

  • Obtained an over one half million dollar judgment, including punitive damages, in a hotly contested partnership dispute that included successfully defending a $1.1 million counter claim.

  • Successfully represented a small business in a FINRA arbitration involving a complicated hedging transaction used in the sale of the business to a publicly traded company.

  • Obtained a permanent injunction for design patent infringement on behalf of Nike Corporation.

  • Obtained a permanent injunction for copyright infringement on behalf of jewelry manufacturer and designer.

  • Successfully defended an unfair competition and trade secret action against one of the worlds’ largest independent distributor of inductive components.

  • Obtained a TRO and preliminary injunction for trade secret misappropriation of a customer list against a former employee.

  • Obtained a defense verdict in a jury trial involving a real estate dispute.

  • Successfully represented insurance policyholders in actions filed against insurers in property damage, liability, and intellectual property (false advertising) claims.


Practice areas


  1. Intellectual Property: 34%
  2. Antitrust: 33%
  3. Business: 33%


Payment types:

Cash, Check, Credit card

Attorney endorsements

1 total 

Are you an attorney? Endorse this lawyer

  • David Steven Olson

    Sean and I worked on a multi-party case together--we were neither opposed nor aligned. He did a great job. I endorse this lawyer.


    David Olson Litigation Attorney
    Relationship: Worked together on matter

Contact info

800 Wilshire Blvd Ste 710
Los Angeles, CA, 90017


We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
Super LawyerSouthern California Super Lawyers2013
Southern California Rising StarsSouthern California Super Lawyers2008
Southern California Rising StarsSouthern California Super Lawyers2007
Southern California Rising StarsSouthern California Super Lawyers2006
Southern California Rising StarsSouthern California Super Lawyers2005
Southern California Rising StarsSouthern California Super Lawyers2004
Southern California Rising StarsSouthern California Super Lawyers2003
Honors Moot Court BoardSanta Clara University School of Law1995
Managing EditorSanta Clara County Bar Association1995
Dean's ListSanta Clara University School of Law1995
Academic ScholorshipsSanta Clara University School of Law1994
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
AttorneyHennigan Bennett & Dorman LLP2000 - 2003
Association namePosition nameDuration
Irish American Bar Association of Los AngelesBoard of Directors2003 - Present
Los Angeles Intellectual Property Law AssociationPast President2009 - 2010
Irish American Bar Association of Los AngelesPresident2009 - 2010
Los Angeles Intellectual Property Law AssociationPresident2008 - 2009
Los Angeles Intellectual Property Law AssociationBoard of Directors2001 - 2010
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
Santa Clara UniversityEconomicsBS - Bachelor of Science1990
Santa Clara University School of LawEconomicsN/A1990