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Yaman Salahi
Partner, San Francisco Office
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415 956-1000
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I am a partner in the firm’s San Francisco office whose practice focuses on confronting corporate and government misconduct and achieving a measure of justice for workers, consumers, and other marginalized and exploited populations.  I welcome your inquiries about legal issues you are facing and potential case matters.

Yaman Salahi

Recent Accomplishments & Current Case Load

  • CARES Act Stimulus Payments for the Incarcerated Population (2020): With an incredible team of attorneys, paralegals, support staff, and community partners, we brought and won a class action against the IRS on behalf of incarcerated people nationwide who were denied $1,200 stimulus payments during the COVID-19 pandemic. Within three months, we prevailed and obtained significant relief for our clients. As a result, the IRS sent over $465 million in additional stimulus funding to 385,000 incarcerated people, and withdrew its request that over 950,000 incarcerated people return more than $1.1 billion already sent to them.
  • Fighting Wage Suppression in the Railway Industry and Academia (2019 and 2020): I was part of the litigation team that obtained $54.5 million for medical professors at Duke University and University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill in 2019, and $48.95 million for railway industry workers at Wabtec, Knorr, and Faiveley in 2020. Both cases challenged alleged agreements between the defendants not to hire, solicit, or recruit one another’s employees, agreements that the plaintiffs alleged resulted in less labor mobility, less competition, and lower wages.
  • Representing Low Wage Fast-Food Workers Challenging No-Hire Agreements: I am part of the litigation team currently challenging agreements between and amongst fast-food franchisees and franchisors (including within the McDonald’s, Jimmy John’s, Burger King, Domino’s, and Papa John’s systems) not to solicit or hire one another’s employees. The plaintiffs allege that the agreements reduced the wages of workers within each fast-food system nationwide.

Credentials and Prior Experience

I have prior experience clerking for the Honorable Edward M. Chen of the Northern District of California and working at the ACLU of Southern California and Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Asian Law Caucus.

I graduated from Yale Law School, where I participated in the Worker and Immigrant Rights Advocacy Clinic to defend Latino residents of East Haven, Connecticut from racial profiling by local law enforcement. I also studied Arabic on a Fields Language Study Fellowship, participated in the Middle East Legal Studies Seminar, and interned at the Urban Justice Center-Community Development Project in New York City and Bay Area Legal Aid in Oakland.

Out of law school, I was an Arthur Liman Fellow at the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California defending civil liberties of Muslim and Middle Eastern communities and litigating the First Amendment photography rights of photographers. I also worked in the National Security and Civil Rights program at Advancing Justice-Asian Law Caucus, including on Omar v. Kerry, a lawsuit successfully challenging the summary confiscation of a San Francisco grandfather’s U.S. passport based on a coerced confession of immigration fraud.

At the Asian Law Caucus, I helped prepare a report requesting that the Office of the Inspector General investigate a wave of illegal passport confiscations at the U.S. Embassy in Sana’a that left dozens of American citizens stranded abroad. After a thorough investigation, in October 2018, the OIG published a report concluding that the State Department failed to follow relevant guidance related to the revocation and confiscation of passports of at least 30 Americans in Yemen. While working at the Asian Law Caucus, I also received the Kathi Pugh Award for Exceptional Mentorship from U.C. Berkeley School of Law for his supervision of law students in the Civil Rights Outreach Project.

In 2017, I served as a Commissioner on the Oakland Privacy Advisory Commission. In 2018, after clerking but before returning to Lieff Cabraser, I spent five weeks as a volunteer attorney with Centro de los Derechos del Migrante in Mexico City, advising Mexican migrant workers about their rights under the H-2A, H-2B, and TN temporary visa programs and conducting intakes with persons facing abuse or underpayment in the work place.

Community Involvement

I am currently on the board of Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Asian Law Caucus, where I used to be a staff attorney in the national security and civil rights program.

Long form bio (click to open pdf).

  • Yale Law School, New Haven, Connecticut
    J.D. – 2012
  • University of California, Berkeley, California
    B.A. – 2009
  • California, 2013
  • U.S. District Court, Central District of California, 2013
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, 2014
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, 2013
  • Speaker, “Outside Counsel Perspective,” California Privacy Law 2020, Practising Law Institute, October 2020
  • Panelist, Privacy Class Actions, Civil Law Symposium on Class Actions, Northern District Practice Program, 2018
  • Strategies for Data Breach Cases, American Association for Justice, 2017
  • Intellectual Property Roundtable, California Lawyer, 2013
  • “Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Employment & Civil Rights Lawyers in America,” Lawdragon, 2021
  • “Rising Star for Northern California,” Super Lawyers, 2021
  • “Outstanding Private Practice Antitrust Achievement,” American Antitrust Institute, 2017, 2019, 2020
  • “Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Financial Lawyers in America,” Lawdragon, 2019, 2020
  • Arabic
  • Spanish