Adam J. Thurston



With defense strategies as diversified as his practice areas, Adam Thurston helps clients protect their assets and reputations in intellectual property, entertainment, environmental and complex business litigation. His trial savvy is matched by his skill in alternative dispute resolution and appellate advocacy. Adam has successfully tried cases to judgment in federal and state courts throughout California and New York, prosecuted and defended claims to final award in domestic and international arbitration proceedings, and helped clients prevail in federal and state appellate courts.

Intellectual Property and Entertainment Litigation

Adam secures temporary and preliminary injunctive relief for clients seeking to protect their trademarks and trade dress from infringement. He also coordinates the defense of such claims, both in pretrial litigation and through trial, with particular depth in the area of product configuration and packaging trade dress claims.

Adam’s entertainment practice focuses on litigation and counsel in the areas of copyright, stolen idea, and profit participations in television and feature film products. In addition, he advises public figures on defamation, right of publicity, invasion of privacy and Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) claims.

Representative Experience

  • Jim Preminger Agency, et al. v. Paramount Pictures Corporation, LASC Case No. BC 340588 (prosecuted net profit and other claims on commission package for Frasier series)
  • Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation; CBS Broadcasting Inc.; and Kelley Productions, Inc. v. MJM Productions, C.D. Cal. Case No. CV-03-4545 RSWL (MANx); MJM Productions, Michael J. MacLeod and Jefferson Dutton v. Kelley Productions, Inc., CBS Broadcasting Inc. and Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, New Hampshire Civil Action No. 03-390-JD (defended trademark, copyright, and unfair competition claims based on clients’ television series)
  • Nova Development v. Sonic Foundry, et al., C.D. Cal. Case No. CV-02-9407 AHM (MANx) (prosecuted copyright infringement and breach of licensing agreement claims relating to video editing software application)
  • Nova Development v. Riverdeep Interactive Learning Ltd., C.D. Cal. Case No. CV-03-4696 WMB (CWx) (prosecuted trademark and trade dress claims relating to software packaging)

Commercial Litigation

There are few commercial disputes outside of Adam’s scope. He has substantive experience collaborating with clients to resolve complex business disputes, consumer class actions (in both federal and state court), data breach actions, international trade violations and securities litigation.

Representative Experience

  • In re Wall St. Journal, 199 Cal. App. 4th 1186, 132 Cal. Rptr. 3d 202 (2011) (defending national newspaper publisher’s right to publish legal notices in local markets)
    Panavision International, LP v. Streamline Circuits Corporation, et al., Los Angeles Superior Court Case No. BC402121 (prosecuted claims for defective circuit board manufacture affecting professional digital movie cameras)
  • Home Depot, U.S.A., Inc. v. United States, U.S. Court of International Trade Consolidated Case No. 00-02-00061 (prosecuted claims for change in tariff classification of imported lighting fixtures)
  • Michael A. Wilson, et al. v. Alterna, Inc., et al., Los Angeles Superior Court Case No. SC087068 (defended to judgment minority shareholder claims against beauty care company and its majority shareholder following sale of company to venture capital firm)
  • Defending a national snack food manufacturer in a class action alleging misbranding and false labeling in the use of the phrase “all natural” in violation of federal and state statutes and regulations
  • Defending a public employee pension fund in a class action challenging premium increases on long term care insurance based upon allegedly false and misleading marketing materials, and breach of fiduciary duty in the management of the program
  • Defending a major currency wiring service alleged to have profited from undisclosed charges in international wire transfers against claims for false advertising and violations of the California Consumer Legal Remedies Act (CLRA), the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), the California Unfair Competition Law (UCL) and the California False Advertising Law
  • Representing a national restaurant supplier in a data breach action alleging violation of statutory and common law privacy rights

Environmental Litigation

Adam helps privately held businesses and developers break ground on new facilities and break up litigation challenges under the:

  • Clean Air Act (CAA)
  • National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA)
  • National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)
  • Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 (FLPMA)
  • Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act
  • Administrative Procedure Act (APA)
  • California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA)

He also handles private nuisance litigation involving environmental pollution such as groundwater contamination and defends national retailers and manufacturers against claims brought under the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986 (Proposition 65).

Personal Interests

Adam enjoys woodworking, carpentry, philosophy and mechanical art.


Bar Admissions


Court Admissions

U.S. Court of International Trade
California Superior Court, Los Angeles
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
U.S. District Court for the Central District of California
U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California
U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California


Vanderbilt University Law School
J.D. (1992)

Boston University
B.A. magna cum laude (1988)

Leadership & Community

Professional Associations

  • Los Angeles County Bar Association (LACBA) — Litigation Section, 2004-present; Intellectual Property Section, 2004-present
  • Santa Monica Bar Association (SMBA) — Board of Directors, 2006-10; Chair, Entertainment Section, 2017-present

Civic Activities

  • Boy Scouts of America — Assistant Scoutmaster, 2013-16
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