• Jan Dodd
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Jan Dodd

Jan Dodd



Jan Dodd is a nationally recognized trial lawyer known for her courtroom representation of clients in product liability, mass torts, and toxic exposures. In a career spanning more than 25 years, she has tried lawsuits throughout the country in both state and federal courts including Arizona, California, Illinois, Kansas, Missouri, and New York. She has won verdicts in product liability and mass tort cases, as well as suits involving premises liability for violent crimes. In addition, Jan has successfully argued appeals in the Seventh and Eighth Circuit Courts of Appeals as well as the state appellate courts of California, Illinois, and Missouri.

Jan seeks practical, rational outcomes for her clients. Clients often call upon Jan to enter a case as trial counsel shortly before trial. Outside of the courtroom, Jan excels in early case investigation and assessment, and she brings a trial-tested perspective to the development of legal theories, the factual story of the case, and the coordination of defense strategy. She also counsels clients in litigation risk mitigation including review of warnings and labels and internal company practices. Jan is also enlisted to help coordinate national dockets and formulate key defense strategies.

Jan’s advocacy skills have been repeatedly recognized. The National Law Journal selected Jan's trial verdict in defense of an over-the-counter cold medicine, In re PPA, as one of the top 10 defense verdicts in the country. The American Lawyer featured Jan as one of the top lawyers in the country under the age of 45. And, for more than a decade, Jan has been recognized in Chambers USA in the area of national product liability. She is described by clients as "a talented trial lawyer," "efficient and effective," and a "star products liability defense lawyer."

Raised in Missouri, Jan began her legal career as a law clerk to the Honorable Edward D. Robertson Jr., former chief justice of the Missouri Supreme Court. After clerking, she honed her trial skills in courtrooms in Southern Illinois “judicial hellhole” counties Madison and St. Clair, as well as in St. Louis, where she was also appointed a special state's attorney general of Missouri to pursue claims on behalf of the state against tobacco companies.

Before her legal career, Jan worked briefly as a television news reporter. Her background in broadcast journalism, coupled with her passion for trial advocacy, informs her ability to transform her clients’ cases into compelling stories that resonate with a jury.


  • Jan won defense verdicts for the maker of an over-the-counter cold medicine. The drug was withdrawn from the market following studies linking the medicine to strokes in young women. In two cases consolidated for a single trial, the plaintiffs asserted they had suffered devastating strokes. They also claimed the company knew of the danger years before and had neither issued warnings nor removed the drug from the market. The plaintiffs sought millions in compensatory and punitive damages. After four-and-a-half months of trial, the jury found in favor of the drugmaker on all counts.
  • Jan won a defense verdict for a manufacturer of an orthopedic implant that had been withdrawn from the market. The plaintiff claimed the implant was defectively designed and sought punitive damages. The jury returned a unanimous verdict in favor of the manufacturer.
  • Jan represented a major oil company sued by a young woman who was abducted from a gas station and left partially paralyzed. She claimed the station failed to provide adequate security. Jan was named trial counsel only 75 days before trial. She revamped the defense, retained new experts, and located and obtained favorable testimony from the perpetrator, who was found on death row in Idaho. After four days of trial, the case was favorably resolved.
  • Jan was part of a team winning an important Daubert decision in the Rezulin multidistrict litigation. During the two-day hearing in a Manhattan federal district court, Jan conducted the cross-examination of the plaintiffs' world-renowned cell biology expert. The court ruled the plaintiffs could not rely on the proposed expert testimony that the medication Rezulin caused "silent" liver injury.
  • Other areas of Jan's experience include cases involving asbestos, breast implants, incontinence implants, intra-aortic balloon catheters, Lap-Band, latex gloves, Norplant, orthopedic implants, pedicle screws, phenylpropanolamine (PPA), Rezulin, surgical instruments, and toxic chemical exposures. As a result of her extensive product/personal injury work, she has developed specialized knowledge and resources in a number of medical fields including neurology, cell biology, hepatology, endocrinology, pulmonology, epidemiology, and orthopedic surgery.


  • Women of Influence: Attorneys, Los Angeles Business Journal (2023)
  • Chambers USA, Product Liability & Mass Torts (2007–2023)
  • Southern California Super Lawyers, Super Lawyers Magazine (2007–2009, 2011–2021)
  • California Trailblazer, The Recorder (2020)
  • Expert Guides, Life Sciences, Legal Media Group (2020)
  • Expert Guides, Product Liability, Legal Media Group (2020)
  • Expert Guides, Women in Business Law, Legal Media Group (2020)
  • The Legal 500 US, Recommended Lawyer, Product Liability, Mass Tort and Class Action - Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices - Defense (2016)
  • The Legal 500 US, Product Liability & Mass Tort Defense: Toxic Tort (2014–2015)
  • Public Counsel Outstanding Pro Bono Service Award (2012)
  • Top 50 Under 45, The American Lawyer (2007)
  • 500 Leading Lawyers in America, Lawdragon (2005)
  • Top 20 Under 40 California, Daily Journal (2004)
  • Top Defense Wins, National Law Journal (2004)

Professional & Community Involvement

  • Los Angeles County Bar Association
    • Executive Committee, Litigation Section

Speaking Engagements

  • “Other Non-Traditional Product Liability Theories,” ACI 27th Annual Conference on Drug and Medical Device Litigation (December 6, 2022)
  • "Engaging the Courts in the Right Way: What Does It Mean to Be an Innovative Thinker as an Outside Counsel," ACI 23rd Annual Conference on Drug and Medical Device Litigation (November 2018)
  • "Case Study From Mensing to Bartlett:  Determining Whether Design Defect Claims Are Preempted for Generic Manufacturers and the Potential Liabilities," ACI 18th Annual Conference on Drug and Medical Device Litigation (December 2013)
  • "Crisis: How to See Clearly as the Dust Settles," IADC Open Forum (July 2011)
  • "Products Liability 101: Understanding the Expanding Theories of Liability and the Threat to Drug and Device Companies," ACI Products Liability Boot Camp for Life Sciences (July 2010)
  • "A Case Study of a Pharmaceutical Trial: Combating Plaintiffs' Tactics and Developing a Winning Strategy Against Any Tough Opponent," ACI 14th Annual Conference on Drug and Medical Device Litigation (December 2009)
  • "Litigation Lifecycle Management: Analyzing Critical Areas of Concern for Today's Corporations," Corporate Counsel Exchange (April 2009)
  • "Mastering Voir Dire," ACI Drug and Medical Device on Trial (June 2008)
  • "Mastering Voir Dire and Selecting the Right Jury," ACI Drug and Medical Device on Trial (July 2007)
  • "Five Tips for Early Case Evaluation," ABA Tort Trial and Insurance Practice (May 2007)
  • "Meeting Objectives Through Defined Roles and Innovative Coordination Tactics," ACI Resolving Mass Tort Product Liability Claims (March 2007)
  • "Under Deconstruction:  Getting Behind the Expert Report," ABA Women in Products Liability Seminar (September 2006)
  • "Corporate Strategies That Win Trials," ABA Corporate Counsel CLE Seminar (February 2006)
  • "Lessons From the PPA Trial - What Jurors Understand and Value," DRI Drug & Medical Device Seminar (May 2005)


  • University of Missouri–Kansas City School of Law (J.D., 1988)
  • University of Missouri (B.J., B.A., with honors, 1985)




Bar Admissions
  • California
  • Illinois
  • Missouri
Court Admissions
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit
  • California State Courts
  • Illinois State Courts
  • Missouri State Courts

Areas of Focus


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