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Professor Pathak

Radha Pathak

Visiting Associate Professor of Law

(619) 525-1561


Visiting Professor Radha A. Pathak is a partner at Stris & Maher LLP, where she primarily represents pension and welfare plan participants and beneficiaries in individual and class actions under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974. She has litigated numerous cases involving complex procedural issues in federal district and appellate courts throughout the country, and she has been litigating cases before the Unites States Supreme Court since 2005. In 2017, she received the Daily Journal’s prestigious California Attorney Lawyer of the Year (CLAY) award for her victory in Montanile v. Board of Trustees, 136 S.Ct. 651 (2016), a case in which she served as lead Supreme Court counsel. She has been a core team member on many other Supreme Court merits cases, including Unicolors, Inc. v. H&M Hennes and Mauritz LP, 142 S.Ct. 941 (2022), Thole v. U. S. Bank N.A., 140 S.Ct. 1615 (2020), Fourth Estate Public Benefit Corp. v., LLC, 139 S.Ct. 881 (2019), Microsoft v. Baker, 137 S.Ct. 1702 (2017), Merrill Lynch v. Manning, 136 S.Ct. 1562 (2016), and Gobeille v. Liberty Mutual Ins. Co., 136 S.Ct. 936 (2016).

Prior to joining Stris & Maher full time, Professor Pathak was an Associate Dean of Student & Alumni Engagement, Associate Professor of Law (with tenure), and Director of the Institute for Trial and Appellate Practice at Whittier Law School. She has extensive experience teaching Civil Procedure and Torts and has also taught Federal Courts, Remedies, Evidence, Advanced Civil Procedure, and Advanced Appellate Advocacy

Professor Pathak served as a judicial clerk to the Honorable Raymond C. Fisher of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Professor Pathak currently serves on the Amicus Brief Committee of the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association. She is admitted to the State Bar of California, the U.S. District Courts for the Central and Northern Districts of California, the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Second Circuit, Third Circuit, Sixth Circuit, Seventh Circuit, Eighth Circuit, Ninth Circuit, and Tenth Circuit, and the U.S. Supreme Court.

Professor Pathak frequently speaks and writes about complex procedural issues.

  • New York University School of Law, J.D., (Cum Laude, New York University Law Review, Notes Development Editor; Teaching Assistant, Civil Procedure)
  • University of California, Berkeley, B.A. (Political Science, Departmental Citation Semi-Finalist; Pi Sigma Alpha National Political Science Honor Society; Chancellor’s Scholar; Wollenberg Award for Excellence in Debate)
  • Civil Procedure I
  • Civil Procedure II
  • California Civil Procedure

Selected Publications

  • Enough About the Constitution: How States Can Regulate Health Insurance Under the ACA, 31 YALE L. & POL’Y REV. 275 (2013) (with Brendan S. Maher)
  • Health Insurance & Federalism-in-Fact, 28 A.B.A. J. LAB. & EMP. L. 73 (2012) (peer-edited) (with Brendan S. Maher)
  • Incorporated State Law, 61 CASE W. RES. L. REV. 823 (2011)
  • Discretionary Clause Bans & ERISA Preemption, 56 S.D. L. REV. 500 (2011) (invited symposium)
  • Statutory Standing and the Tyranny of Labels, 62 OKLA. L. REV. 89 (2009) (cited by United States Supreme Court in Lexmark Intern., Inc. v. Static Control Components, Inc., 134 S. Ct. 1377 (2014))
  • Understanding and Problematizing Contractual Tort Subrogation, 40 LOY. U. CHI. L.J. 49 (2008) (with Brendan S. Maher)
  • Breaking the “Unbreakable Rule”: Federal Courts, Article I, and the Problem of “Related To” Bankruptcy Jurisdiction, 85 OR. L. REV. 59 (2006)

Selcted Presentations

  • ERISA Civil Procedure Update (moderator and panelist), ABA Joint Committee on Employee Benefits, Webinar, March 2022
  • ERISA at the U.S. Supreme Court, Advanced ERISA Litigation Seminar (Virtual), November 2021
  • American University Washington College of Law, IP at the Supreme Court Series: Unicolors, Inc. v. H&M Hennes & Mauritz, LP, November 2021
  • ERISA Preemption, Virtual National Institute on ERISA Basics, October 2021
  • ERISA at the Supreme Court, 2021 Midwinter Meeting of the Employee Benefits Committee, ABA Section of Labor and Employment Law, Webinar, February 2021
  • Three Strikes and You’re In – Supreme Court Decides Three ERISA Cases, With More to Come, Practicing Law Institute (PLI), Webinar, June 2020
  • ERISA at the Supreme Court, 2020 Midwinter Meeting of the Employee Benefits Committee, ABA Section of Labor and Employment Law, Rancho Mirage, CA, February 2020
  • Subrogation and Reimbursement Claims, National Institute on ERISA Basics, ABA Joint Committee on Employee Benefits, October 2019, Chicago, IL
  • Fiduciary Update, 2019 Midwinter Meeting of the Employee Benefits Committee, ABA Section of Labor and Employment Law, February 2019, Nashville, TN
  • Fiduciary Litigation Update, 2018 Midwinter Meeting of the Employee Benefits Committee, ABA Section of Labor and Employment Law, February 2018, Clearwater, FL
  • ACI’s 14th National Forum on ERISA Litigation, Medical Provider Claims: Assignment, Standing & Penalties, March 2017, Chicago, IL
  • New Civil Procedure Rules and ERISA Litigation, ABA Joint Committee on Employee Benefits, September 2016, webinar
  • Pension Rights Center, teleconference training regarding the effect of Montanile v. Bd. of Trustees of NEI Health Benefit Plan on pension recoupment claims, April 2016
  • University of Connecticut School of Law, Fifth Annual National Benefits & Social Insurance Conference, Robust Enforcement at Last? Medical Providers as the New ERISA Enforcers, April 2016