Bloomberg Law
Dec. 10, 2019, 8:08 PMUpdated: Dec. 10, 2019, 10:18 PM

Morrison & Foerster Women Reveal Names in Pregnancy Class Suit (1)

Patrick Dorrian
Patrick Dorrian
Sam Skolnik
Sam Skolnik

The two women leading a proposed class action accusing Morrison & Foerster LLP of systemic bias against pregnant women and new mothers are a current associate at the firm, and a lawyer with London-based international firm Linklaters LLP, according to a court filing.

MoFo’s Sherry A. William and Linklaters’ Joshua Ashley Klayman disclosed their identities Dec. 10 as they withdrew their motion to proceed using pseudonyms. The move comes as class counsel is expected to file an amended complaint in the suit, which charges that “the mommy track is a dead end” at MoFo and that women who take maternity leave aren’t promote or paid the same as their peers with the same experience and ability.

William was previously identified only as Jane Doe 1 and Klayman as Jane Doe 6. William is a current senior associate at MoFo, and chair of the Working Parents Affinity Group in the Los Angeles office, according to a Dec. 10 statement from her lawyers.

The New York-based Klayman was former of counsel at MoFo, founding chair of its Blockchain + Smart Contracts Group and a former member of its firm-wide Women’s Strategy Committee. She joined Linklaters in July as leader of its blockchain and digital assets practice group, and as the firm’s U.S. leader of fintech, or financial technology.

Five other women who were suing along with William and Klayman recently advised the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California that they had settled their individual claims. They filed a stipulation of discontinuance with the court Dec. 6. The terms of those settlements are unknown.

Jane Does 2, 3, and 4, like William, all worked for MoFo in California, while Jane Doe 5 worked in MoFo’s Washington office. Jane Doe 7 was an associate in the firm’s New York City office, according to prior court filings.

“Ms. William and Ms. Klayman are committed to vigorously prosecuting their individual and class claims of gender discrimination and maternity discrimination against Morrison & Foerster,” a statement from Sanford Heisler Sharp LLP, the firm representing the women said.

Sanford Heisler Sharp LLP represents the women. Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP represents Morrison & Foerster.

A spokesperson from Morrison & Foerster declined to comment on the matter beyond the firm’s existing filings and statements.

The case is Doe v. Morrison & Foerster LLP, N.D. Cal., No. 3:18-cv-02542, notice of withdrawl of motion 12/10/19.

(Added Morrison & Foerster spokesperson's response in last paragraph. )

To contact the reporter on this story: Patrick Dorrian in Washington at

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Rob Tricchinelli at; Steven Patrick at