Michael A.S. Newman

Michael A.S. Newman is a litigation partner in Barger & Wolen’s Los Angeles office. He joined the firm in 2001.

Michael is involved in a broad range of litigation matters, including employment, insurance coverage disputes, bad faith liability actions, class actions, contractual disputes, and insurance regulatory matters.

Michael has represented and advised business clients, both in and out of the insurance industry, in actions alleging violation of employment laws.  He has defended and advised insurance companies and insurance agents in numerous cases over the years involving alleged bad faith denial of benefits on life, disability, long-term care, workers compensation and health insurance policies, as well as elder abuse and negligence claims.  Michael also represents business clients in matters involving alleged misappropriation of trade secrets. 

In addition to his representative work, Michael has been a regular guest columnist for various magazines and newspapers, both online and print, including Inside Counsel, Financier Worldwide Magazine, the Los Angeles Daily Journal and the San Francisco Daily Journal.  He has been engaged to write book reviews, opinions, and analysis of both current and historical legal issues.

Michael is the co-editor of Barger & Wolen’s Employment Law Observer blog.

Michael has also spoken at conferences and seminars regarding insurance and litigation issues.  In 2010, 2011, and 2012, he spoke at the American Conference Institute’s conference on Bad Faith Litigation on the topics of discovery, damages, and recent legal developments.

His recent matters include:

  • Beaumont-Jacques v Farmers Group, Inc. Primary writer of the briefing at the trial court level and on appeal establishing on summary judgment that a district manager of insurer defendants, responsible for recruiting and training insurance agents, was properly classified as an independent contractor, and was not an employee.
  • Established on summary judgment that insurer defendants had properly classified recruiter and trainer of insurance agents as independent contractor.
  • Lead counsel in arbitration, securing ruling that defendant had not breached its contract in terminating retail salespersons and did not owe them additional commissions. 
  • Established on summary judgment that life insurance had been properly rescinded by insurer, based on insured misrepresentations regarding income and net worth; affirmed by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal.


  • University of California, Los Angeles, J.D., 1999
    Chief Comments Editor, UCLA Law Review
  • University of California, Berkeley, B.A., Phi Beta Kappa,1996

Articles & Publications

Professional Memberships

  • The State Bar of California
  • American Bar Association
  • Los Angeles County Bar Association
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