Morgan Lewis

Related Publications

05/14/14 The “Most Frightening” Holding of 2013?
Coverage of Asahi v Actelion revealed there to be great confusion around the liabilities of parent companies and their subsidiaries, says Christopher J. Banks, Rollin B. Chippey II, and Benjamin P. Smith (pdf)
04/23/14 The Defense and Prosecution of Lost Profits and Business Tort Claims – Lessons Learned from Asahi Kasei Pharma Corp. v. Actelion Ltd.
05/04/13 Data Security and Digital Scams
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Related News

03/13/14 Half Billion Dollar Judgment for Morgan Lewis Client Asahi Kasei Pharma Withstands State Supreme Court Appeal
The California Supreme Court on Wednesday unanimously denied review of an appeals court decision in a drug licensing lawsuit between Asahi Kasei Pharma Corp. and Actelion, Ltd. Morgan Lewis represented Asahi in the appeal and throughout the underlying trial.
03/13/14 California High Court Preserves $415M Verdict Against Actelion, Law360
Morgan Lewis's successful representation of Asahi Kasei Pharma Corp. is covered.
12/20/13 $407 Million Final Judgment Affirmed in Morgan Lewis Victory for Asahi Kasei Pharma
The California Court of Appeals on December 18 affirmed a jury’s decision that Swiss pharmaceutical manufacturer Actelion, Ltd. is liable for interfering in Asahi Kasei Pharma Corp’s licensing agreement to develop a competing drug (Fasudil) for the treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension.
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Photo of  Christopher J. Banks

honors + affiliations

Member, Georgetown Journal of Law & Policy in International Business

Listed, "Rising Star," Northern California Super Lawyers (2011)

Listed, 2011 Attorney of the Year, The Recorder

bar admissions

  • California

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. District Courts for the Northern and Southern Districts of California
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Christopher J. Banks

San Francisco
One Market, Spear Street Tower
San Francisco, CA 94105-1596
United States
Phone: +1.415.442.1364
Fax: +1.415.442.1001
Silicon Valley
2 Palo Alto Square
3000 El Camino Real, Suite 700
Palo Alto, CA 94306-2121 USA
Phone: +1.650.843.7564
Fax: +1.650.843.4001

Christopher J. Banks is a partner in Morgan Lewis's Litigation Practice, and a trial lawyer specializing in complex commercial matters. Mr. Banks was  named a 2011 Attorney of the Year by The Recorder for his work first-chairing Morgan Lewis's trial team that secured a $415 million judgment (after first obtaining a $577 million jury verdict) for client Asahi Kasei Pharma Corp. Mr. Banks and his partners represented Asahi in a three-month, San Mateo County state court jury trial in 2011 on claims that the defendant company fraudulently and intentionally interfered with the development of a promising therapeutic agent owned by Asahi. The jury verdict and judgment they obtained rank among the largest in the nation for 2011. Mr. Banks and his partners have also successfully represented Asahi in Actelion’s appeal, with the California Court of Appeals upholding the judgment in late 2013.

Mr. Banks has over a decade of trial experience, with particular focus on jury trials and on representing clients in the information technology and biopharmaceutical industries with disputes related to unfair business practices, intellectual property, antitrust, breach of contract, employee raiding, and non-competition issues. He is designated a “Superlawyer” by Northern California Super Lawyers and was selected as one of the twenty best attorneys in California under 40 years of age by the Daily Journal in 2013.

Mr. Banks has played a key role on numerous Morgan Lewis trial teams, including the successful prosecution of claims for a pharmaceutical company in an International Chamber of Commerce arbitration in 2009 that culminated in an award of $91 million. In 2008, he helped successfully defend a financial institution on damages retrial, convincing a jury to award no damages against a defendant that had already been found to have willfully and maliciously misappropriated trade secrets. He also participated in obtaining a midtrial client defense decision in a 2005 case involving a $450 million claim for misappropriation of corporate opportunity, among other claims.

Mr. Banks received his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center in 2001. He earned his M.A., with distinction, in international affairs from The George Washington University in 1997, and his B.A., cum laude, from the University of Nebraska in 1994.

Mr. Banks is admitted to practice in California and before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and the U.S. District Courts for the Northern and Southern Districts of California.

Selected Representations

  • Obtained summary judgment for a multinational company in the Northern District of California against an ERISA claim of prohibited transactions after class certification.
  • Obtained a complete defense verdict for a financial services client in arbitration with a broker-dealer self-regulating body that sought $10 million for alleged negligent investment administration.
  • Represented a leading direct marketing company in the Central District of California in multi-million litigation alleging copyright infringement, trade dress infringement, and false advertising claims.
  • Obtained a $44.6 million jury verdict for a sports agency in the Central District of California on trade secrets claims.
  • Represented a data storage company in California state court and obtained a preliminary injunction against a former employee on claims of illegal competition and violation of a non-compete agreement.


  • Georgetown University Law Center, 2001, J.D.
  • George Washington University, 1997, M.A., With Distinction
  • University of Nebraska, 1994, B.A., Cum Laude