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About me

Matthew Clarke has been a trial lawyer since 1996 and leads the firm’s litigation department. He has expertise in complex civil litigation and has achieved more than $100 million in verdicts and settlements for his clients. Additionally, Mr. Clarke has defended his clients in a wide variety of civil disputes.  Mr. Clarke has handled insurance “bad faith” and coverage disputes, construction defect (plaintiffs and defendants), business litigation, lender liability, intellectual property, product liability, and other complex litigation matters.

Mr. Clarke was previously a partner at Cappello & Noel, one of the nation’s foremost complex commercial litigation firms, in Santa Barbara, California. While at Cappello, Mr. Clarke’s longest trial lasted 11 months and resulted in a multi-million dollar judgment in a construction defect case.

He has also tried cases for plaintiffs and defendants involving catastrophic injuries, sexual harassment, wrongful death, wrongful termination, legal malpractice, accounting malpractice, real estate transactions, investments and intellectual property. This includes a jury verdict of more than $40 million against defendants represented by a major international law firm.

Finally, Mr. Clarke has extensive experience advising and counseling businesses, large and small, in the full range of legal issues businesses regularly face. In this regard, the emphasis is always risk management and cost effective solutions to difficult problems.


Languages spoken: Spanish

Photos and videos

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Practice areas


  1. Lawsuits & Disputes: 50%
    20 years, 350 cases
  2. Litigation: 50%
    20 years, 350 cases



Hourly ($300-385/hour), contingent (25-45%), Fixed (sometimes), Retainer (sometimes), Free consultation (60 minutes)

Payment types:

Cash, Check, Credit card

Attorney endorsements

2 total 

Are you an attorney? Endorse this lawyer

  • No photo

    I endorse this lawyer. Mr Clarke is a lawyer who has earned the respect of his peers, I have read his answers on Avvo, and they come from a wealth of experience, as they are accurate, and practical. I am happy to recommend him.


    Robert Harris
    Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community

  • No photo

    Matt is an excellent attorney of the highest caliber.


    Dugan Kelley Lawsuits and disputes Attorney
    Relationship: Co-worker

Contact info

Christman, Kelley & Clarke PC

1334 Anacapa St, 2nd Floor
Santa Barbara, CA, 93101-2012


TXEligible To Practice In Texas 200908/17/2016
We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
Super Lawyer Rising Star - Best Lawyers Under 40Super Lawyers2009
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
ShareholderChristman, Kelley & Clarke1996 - Present
Association namePosition nameDuration
Santa Barbara County Bar AssociationPresident-Elect for 20152010 - 2013
Legal cases
Case nameOutcome
Cordero v. 7 ElevenPlaintiff's verdict.
See all legal cases 
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
Northwestern University School of LawLawJD - Juris Doctor1996
Willamette UniversityHistoryBA - Bachelor of Arts1992