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Joseph G. Adams

Joseph G. Adams

Partner| Phoenix


Joe Adams helps clients solve complex business disputes. He focuses his practice on securities and corporate governance litigation and intellectual property matters.

Joe represents clients in class actions, shareholder derivative suits, employee benefits litigation, corporate governance disputes, false claims suits, and other commercial matters relating to corporations and shareholders. He advises clients about compliance and regulatory issues, including addressing issues raised by the federal and state regulatory agencies such as the Securities and Exchange Commission, as well as allegations of wrongdoing raised by whistleblowers. He has represented numerous clients in “business divorce” cases involving litigation over ownership and control of companies. He has overseen internal investigations regarding financial restatements, accounting issues, and instances of alleged individual wrongdoing. 

In the intellectual property area, Joe represents clients in copyright, trademark, patent, and unfair competition matters. His recent experience includes prosecuting cases involving trademark and copyright infringement, representing clients in false advertising and unfair competition disputes, and defending the immunity of web site operators under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. He helps clients design anti-piracy programs and prevent the sale of infringing products online. Earlier in his career, he practiced intellectual property litigation at a large Silicon Valley law firm.

  • Stanford Law School (J.D., 1997)
    • Stanford Law Review
    • Stanford Journal of Law, Business & Finance
  • University of Notre Dame (B.A., 1994)
  • Lawyer Representative to the Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference (2015-2018)
  • ABA Business Law Section, Business and Corporate Litigation Committee, ERISA and Pension Litigation Subcommittee, Vice Chair
  • State Bar of Arizona, Civil Jury Instructions Committee (2011-2014)
  • Stanford Law School Phoenix Regional Chapter, Co-Chair
  • Stanford Law School Board of Visitors (2012-2015)
  • American Bar Association
  • International Trademark Association
  • Federal Bar Association
  • "Internal Investigations: Overview and Current Developments," Panelist, Snell & Wilmer Seminar (June 2016)
  • "Internal Investigations and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act: Understanding the New World Order," Panelist, Association of Corporate Counsel, Nevada (May 2016)
  • "Commercial Damages" and "Rebuttal Expert Reports," Panelist, Forensic and Valuation Services Conference of the American Institute of CPAs (November 2014)
  • "Compliance Summit 2014," Speaker, Snell & Wilmer Seminar (March 2014)
  • "Whistleblower Case Study," Speaker, Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (March 2014)
  • "U.S. Supreme Court Expands Whistleblower Protections for Employees of Private Companies," Author, Snell & Wilmer Legal Alert (March 2014)
  • "The Sell Decision: Aiding, Abetting Liability Not Included," Co-Author, Arizona Attorney Magazine (February 2014)
  • "Ethics in Mergers and Acquisitions: A Review of Best Practices from Pre- to Post-Closing," Panelist, Association of Corporation Counsel Seminar (April 2013)
  • "Reserving and Disclosing for Loss Contingencies," Moderator, Snell & Wilmer Seminar (January 2013)
  • "How to Avoid and Resolve Disputes Between Business Partners," Panelist, Snell & Wilmer Seminar (November 2012)
  • "Federal Courts Endorse an Expanded Definition of a 'Whistleblower,'" Snell & Wilmer Legal Alert (October 2012)
  • "Counsel on the Hot Seat: Managing Internal Investigations," Co-Author with Barbara Dawson, Association of Corporate Counsel Newsletter (December 2011)
  • "2010 Securities Litigation Update," Presenter, Securities Regulation Section of the State Bar of Arizona (November 2010)
  • "Safeguarding Against D&O Claims Arising Out of the Financial Crisis," Presenter, Arizona Bankers Association’s Annual CEO & Bank Directors College (October 2010)
  • "The Anatomy of the Director-Led Investigation and the Role of Special Counsel to the Board," Co-Author with Barbara Dawson and Andreea Micklis, Snell & Wilmer Financial Services Litigation Bulletin (October 2010)
  • "Attorney-Client Privilege in the Context of Internal Investigations," Presenter, Snell & Wilmer Annual Retreat (April 2010)
  • "Establishing Procedures for Internal Investigations and Litigation Holds," Presenter, Litigation Master Series Session II for Lex Mundi and Association of Corporate Counsel (November 2009)
  • "Ethical Issues in Internal Investigations," Presenter, Association of Corporate Counsel Ethics Series (April 2009)
  • "Recent Supreme Court Case Favors Patent Holders that Tie," Co-Author with John Platt, Executive Counsel (August 2006)
  • "Above and Beyond" Litigation Award, Volunteer Lawyers Program Pro Bono Awards (2014)
  • Top 50 Pro Bono Attorneys in Arizona, Arizona Foundation for Legal Services and Education (2009)
  • Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, P.C., Palo Alto, California (2000-2003)
  • United States District Court, District of Arizona, Law Clerk to Hon. Roslyn O. Silver (1997-1998)
  • Arizona
  • California
  • Supreme Court of Arizona
  • Supreme Court of California
  • United States District Court, District of Arizona
  • United States District Court, Northern District of California
  • United States District Court, Central District of California
  • United States Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit