Brian Fahling

Professional Experience

Snohomish County Superior Court — Everett, WA
Judge Pro Tem/Commissioner Pro Tem (January 2010 – Present)
Serve in place of elected judges and appointed commissioners when they are unavailable.

Law Office of Brian Fahling — Kirkland, WA
Attorney (2008 – Present)
Business Law, Employment Law, General Counsel Services for Start-ups and Small Businesses, Media/Communications Law, State, Local and Municipal Law, School Law, Constitutional Law, Copyright (Including P2P and BitTorent litigation defense), Trademark.
Litigation and Appeals

Center for Law & Policy — Tupelo, MS
Senior Trial Attorney/Senior Policy Analyst (1994 – 2008)
National practice which emphasized 42 U.S.C. § 1983 claims, included litigating and/or advising clients in all 50 states and Puerto Rico. Initiated litigation, prepared and reviewed pleadings and handled al phases of discovery; supervised attorneys and paralegals from initial investigation and fact finding through post-trial proceedings and appeal. Counsel of record for U.S. senators and representatives and two states in amicus briefs before U.S. Supreme Court. Taught CLE courses nationally and internationally in federal trial and appellate practice. Created, implemented and supervised internship program. Advised corporate officers, local and state government officials and members of congress on a wide variety of legal issues. As in-house counsel, advised CEO and department heads regarding risk management, copyright, trademark, trade secrets, contract issues, regulatory compliance and employment matters. Assisted and advised federal, state and local officials in drafting legislation.

Snohomish County Prosecutors Office — Everett, WA
Deputy Prosecuting Attorney (1990 – 1994)
Served as deputy prosecuting attorney in Criminal Division. Responsible for charging decisions; prosecuted crimes ranging from white collar crime to attempted murder. Worked extensively with county and city detectives and police officers reviewing warrants for probable cause, providing supervision regarding gathering of evidence, and giving legal advice about constitutionally permissible search and seizure practices.

Key Achievements

Obtained convictions in over 95% of jury and bench trials.
Instructor for Washington Association of Prosecuting Attorneys


Lead counsel in case where a marketing vice president was terminated after 26 years at Achilles USA. Sued the company and its Japanese parent company for age discrimination, disabilty discrimination, race discrimination and national origin discrimination. Large settlement obtained. Settlement is covered by a confidentiality agreement. Olsen v. Achilles USA, et al., No. 2:12-cv-01419 MJP (W.D. Wash. 2013).

Lead counsel for petitioner in case where decedent, Mark Stover (known as the "Dog Whisperer," and dog trainer to the stars), believing he would be murdered by someone hired by his ex-wife and father-in-law, left a check in the amount of $150,00 for woman he was going to marry. Mr. Stover was murdered less than two months later, and Michel Oakes, Mr. Stover’s ex-wife’s live-in boyfriend, was convicted of the first degree murder of Mr. Stover. Petitioned for check (a gift causa mortis) which Mr. Stover’s estranged sister refused to deliver, and after trial was awarded $150,000, plus attorney’s fees. Vaux-Michel v. Simmons (Skagit County Sup. Ct. No. 09-4-041-1) (Sept. 24, 2012).

Lead counsel in case successfully overturning decision of the Employment Security Division ordering client to repay more than $18,00. State also ordered to pay attorney’s fees. Childe v. Washington Dept. of Employment Security, Snohomish County Sup. Ct., No. 10-2-02984-1) (2010).

Lead counsel in case successfully challenging ordinances on First Amendment grounds. Also obtained attorney’s fees. Pine v. City of West Palm Beach (No. 9:04-cv-80123-WJZ) (S.D.Fla. 207).

Lead counsel in legal malpractice case alleging that lawyer and his firm fraudulently induced client to sign an appearance form; filed an appearance form against client’s express wishes and explicit instructions; refused to represent him in a custody case without an additional fee; terminated their presentation of him without his permission or consent; and filed two unethical, oppressive or unscrupulous lawsuits. Obtained large settlement the day before trial. The settlement is subject to confidentiality agreement. DePrimo v. Chiareli, Superior Court, judicial district of New Haven, Docket No. CV 01 0454691 (207)

Lead counsel in successfully challenging city’s violation of plaintiffs’ First Amendment rights. Obtained consent decree which included damages for plaintiffs, attorney’s fees, and requirement that City provide First Amendment training on an annual basis to al police officers and other city employees. Reyes v. City of Chula Vista (No. 3:05- cv-02309-H-LSP) (S.D.Cal. 206).

As counsel of record, authored amicus brief to U.S. Supreme Court (in support of Child Internet Protection Act) on behalf of United States senator and three House members. U.S. v. American Library Assoc., 539 U.S. 194
Lead counsel in successful defense of Kiowa County School District RE-2 against motion for TRO and preliminary and permanent injunction. Shields, et al v. Kiowa County Sch. Dist. RE-2 (No. 1:02-cv-0972-MSK- CBS) (D.Colo. 203).
Lead counsel in successful lawsuit alleging racial discrimination and RLUIPA violation; obtained consent decree granting requested relief, damages and attorney’s fees. Victory Tabernacle Missionary Baptist Church v. Henry County, Georgia (No. 1:03-cv-0249-MHS) (N.D.Ga. 203

Lead counsel in case successfully challenging two Florida statutes as unconstitutional. Also obtained attorney’s fees. Bischof v. Florida, 242 F.Sup.2d 126, 1239 (M.D.Fla. 203).

Special Counsel to Mississipi and Louisiana, representing the two states in amicus brief to United States Supreme Court in case of Stenberg v. Carhart, 530 U.S. 914 (200).

Lead counsel in successful defense of individual and corporate entities sued for $30 million in state court.Obtained preliminary and permanent injunctive relief in federal court against further prosecution of the stateaction. Blackerby, et al v. Gren County, Comm., et al (No. 7:9-cv-02347-ELN) (N.D. Ala 199).

Lead counsel in case successfully securing in settlement a change in zoning law to permit churches to locate in Fountain Valley, California, where zoning laws had ben used to kep new churches out. Shalom Aliance, et al v. City of Fountain Valley, et al (No. 8:9-cv-089-GLT-EE) (C.D.Cal. 199).


Regent University School of Law
J.D. 1989

University of Wyoming
B.S. Business Administration, 1982


United States Supreme Court
1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 1th and DC Circuit Courts of Appeal
U.S. District Court for Western District of Washington
U.S. District Court for Eastern, Western and Northern Districts of Texas
U.S. District Court for Colorado
U.S. District Court for Arizona
U.S. District Court for Central District of Illinois
U.S. District Court for Eastern and Western Districts of Wisconsin
Washington State Bar

Presentations (Partial Listing)

Artistry & Advocacy in Litigation: Creating a Fresco, not a Fiasco, Sponsored by WSBA, June 9, 2009

The Changing Status of Privacy Rights, University of Richmond School of Law, Panelist, March 2006.

Section 1998 Fee Recovery in Section 1983 Litigation, National Litigation Academy, Maui, Hawaii, Lecture, July 2001.

The Jurisprudence of Chief Justice John Marshall, Blackstone Fellowship, Scottsdale, Arizona, Lecture, August 2001.

Constitutionality of Filtering the Internet in Public Schools and Libraries, Testimony before Pennsylvania House Judiciary Subcommittee, March 2000.

Home Run Motions and Keys to Effective Oral Argument, National Litigation Academy, Cancun, Mexico, Lecture, June 2000.

Motions Practice in Section 1983 Litigation, National Litigation Academy, San Juan, Puerto Rico, Lecture, July 1999.