Photo of Justine M. Phillips

Justine M. Phillips

Special Counsel
San Diego (Del Mar)
T: 858.720.7476
F: 858.847.4878


  • J.D., University of San Diego Law School, 2005, with honors
  • B.A., University of San Diego, 1999
  • California
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California
  • U.S. District Court for the Central District of California
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California
Publications & News

Justine Phillips is a special counsel in both Data Privacy & Security and Labor and Employment Practice Groups in the firm's San Diego (Del Mar) office.

Areas of Practice

Justine focuses her practice on cybersecurity, data privacy, employment litigation and counseling, and commercial litigation. Justine takes a holistic approach to assist clients on everyday issues related to electronically stored information including: cyber risk management and mitigation; eWorkforce policies; compliance with data regulations; retention/destruction policies and protocols; information-security and data privacy; crisis management and forensic investigations for data breaches; business email compromises; electronic discovery; and social-media issues. She co-authors the California section of a 50 state survey on data privacy laws entitled "Survey of California Employment Privacy Law," MLRC Employment Survey, 2014. Justine also founded Women in eDiscovery San Diego chapter and frequently publishes and speaks on cyber-related issues.

As an employment attorney, Justine handles commercial litigation for clients in the following industries: insurance, medical device, education, defense, cybersecurity, manufacturing, retail, non-profit and for-profit industries. Justine also regularly advises clients on issues relating to: classification; leave policies; defense of ADA and FEHA disability discrimination claims; interactive process and reasonable accommodation; wage and hour matters; information management; social media; employment agreements; and employee handbooks. Justine has defended companies in both state and federal court against claims of discrimination, harassment, retaliation, and wrongful dismissals.

  • San Diego Rising Star by Super Lawyers, 2015
  • Selected as a Lawyer on the Fast Track by The Recorder, 2013
  • Awarded the State Bar of California Wiley Manuel Award for pro bono legal services, 2012
  • Named as one of the San Diego Daily Transcript's Young Attorneys in 2007, 2008 and 2010


  • "Survey of California Employment Privacy Law," MLRC Employment Survey, 2013-2015
  • "White House Aims to Protect 'Critical Infrastructure'," Daily Journal, February 27, 2013
  • "General Counsel's Highest Concern? Cybersecurity," Daily Journal, 2012
  • "Is America Loving Same-Sex Couples?" American College of Forensic Psychiatry, 2005

Labor & Employment Law Blog Posts

Media Mentions

Speaking Engagements

  • Speaker, Cyber Security for Legal Professionals: "The Good, The Bad & The Ugly," Association of Corporate Counsel, September 28, 2016
  • Panelist, Signature Series: "IoT: TMI? Smart Cities, Smart Devices and San Diego’s Smartest #IoT Influencers," Athena, September 20, 2016
  • Panelist, Blackhat Conference: Securing the Internet of Things Masters Forum, August 3, 2016
  • Panelist, Blackhat Conference: "Healthcare Security: Patient Health v. Patient Data," CyberTECH, August 2, 2016
  • Speaker, "The Force Awakens: Amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure," May 31, 2016
  • Speaker, "Speed Mentoring," San Diego Legal Secretaries Association and Paralegal, May 23, 2016
  • Speaker, "Cybersecurity and IT Acquisition Threats, Laws and Best Practices," Fed Pub Seminars, May 18, 2016
  • Moderator, "Oh DEAR!! Reasonable Accommodations & The Interactive Process under ADA and FEHA," L-3 Corporate Workers' Compensation Group, May 18, 2016
  • Speaker, "Breakfast With Your Labor Lawyer," Annual Conference, May 4, 2016
  • Speaker, "Art of Public Speaking," High Tech High, April 25, 2016
  • Speaker, "Corporate Cyber Espionage, Small & Midsize Businesses," April 21, 2016
  • Speaker, "Cyber Investigations – Incident Response," San Diego ESI Forum, April 14, 2016
  • Speaker, "Cyber Awareness and Education," Red Cross, April 12, 2016
  • Moderator, "Conquering Your IT and Security Objectives," California IT Technology Summit’s 4th Annual Summit, March 16, 2016
  • Moderator, "Securing the Internet of Things Masters Speaking about Head in the Cloud, Literally? Life of IoT and Emerging Technologies in the Cloud," Cybertech, February 29, 2016
  • Panelist, "Amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure on Discovery and Case Management," San Diego ESI/Women in eDiscovery, December 10, 2015
  • Panelist, "Change is Here: Amendments to the Federal Rules," San Diego ESI Forum and Women in eDiscovery, December 10, 2015
  • Speaker, "The Only Constant in Life is Change: Year in Revew," Workplace 2016 - San Diego Employer Advisory Council Annual Seminar, October 21, 2015
  • Panelist, "Litigation Technology: The nEXT Step in Your Legal Career," UCSD Extension, October 10, 2015
  • Moderator, "Protecting Your Personal and Professional Brand," Cyberfest 2015, October 8, 2015
  • Panelist, Decade of Discovery Screening and Panel, University of San Diego, October 1, 2015
  • Speaker, “Trending Data Breaches & Cybersecurity,” Nuix User Exchange 2015, September 29, 2015
  • Panelist, “Can Bitcoin Pay for IoT?” Internet of Things (IoT) Meetup, September 17, 2015
  • Co-Chair, San Francisco Bar Association Data Privacy & Security Seminar, General Counsel Institute, May 20, 2015
  • Speaker, "Securing Our eCity," 2015 Payroll Fraud Prevention Group Annual Meeting, April 15, 2015
  • Panelist, “The New Unduly Burdensome Objection: How to Fend Off or Embrace Proportionality and Cost Considerations in Discovery,” San Diego ESI Forum, March 12, 2015
  • Speaker, “Mitigating Liability Before the Inevitable Breach: Prepare for the Worst and Hope for the Best,” InfraGuard San Diego IT and Communications Sectors Joint Meeting, February 26, 2015
  • Speaker, "HR Legal Updates for 2015," CONNECT HR Roundtable, January 29, 2015
  • Moderator, "Privacy Divide: Real or Perceived," Data Privacy Day 2015: Securing the Internet of Things, January 28, 2015
  • Panelist, "eDiscovery & Information Governance Think Tank," January 27, 2015
  • Speaker, "Labor & Employment End of the Year Legal Update," Western Pension & Benefits Council San Diego Chapter, December 9, 2014
  • Speaker, "Workplace - 2015 Preparing Today for Tomorrow," October 22, 2014
  • Moderator, "IoT: War on Privacy," Cyberfest 2014, October 1, 2014
  • Speaker, "Managing the e-Workforce," Women in eDiscovery, Los Angeles Chapter, September 17, 2014
  • Panelist, "Computer and Network Forensics," San Diego ESI Forum, July 24, 2014
  • Speaker, "Cyber Liability: What to do if your company becomes a victim of a cyber security incident and how to handle the triage," San Diego Chapter of the Association of Information Technology Professionals, July 23, 2014
  • Panelist, "You Asked What!? Interviewing 101 for Non-HR Professionals," CONNECT HR Roundtable, May 8, 2014
  • Speaker, "Discovering & Using Social Media Evidence," California Judges Association Mid-Year Conference, May 2, 2014
  • Speaker, “The Hitchhiker's Guide to Cyber Law,” San Diego IEEE Cyber Security Entrepreneurial Workshop, March 28, 2014
  • Speaker, "Data Breaches: Prepare for the Worst and Hope for the Best," ACC San Diego Chapter MCLE Program, March 20, 2014
  • Moderator, Data Privacy Day: Mobile Devices & Privacy Issues, January 28, 2014
  • Speaker, General Counsel Today Los Angeles, The Cyber Workforce & E-Discovery, December 10, 2013
  • Sedona Conference on Cyber Liability, Setting Best Legal Practices in Data Breach Investigations, October 24, 2013
  • Speaker, WORKPLACE 2014 - The Ultimate HR Booster Shot, San Diego Employer Advisory Council Annual Seminar: Oh DEAR! Avoiding Disability Discrimination Claims and Effectively Managing Accommodation Requests, October 16, 2013
  • Speaker, WORKPLACE 2014 - The Ultimate HR Booster Shot, San Diego Employer Advisory Council Annual Seminar: Protect the Palace: Employee Monitoring and Workplace Privacy in the Cyber Era, October 16, 2013
  • Speaker, WORKPLACE 2014 - The Ultimate HR Booster Shot, San Diego Employer Advisory Council Annual Seminar: Employment Law Update 2014, October 16, 2013
  • Speaker, CLE on How to Use a Computer Forensic Expert in Civil Litigation, October 11, 2013
  • Speaker, CyberFest 2013, Cyber-Apocalypse: Mitigating and Shifting Risk Relating to Data Breaches, October 10, 2013
  • Panelist, Employment & Labor Law Society, Sex in the Courtroom: Practice of Sexual Harassment Law, October 9, 2013
  • Moderator, CyberHive - Internet of Things Forum, Moderator on Privacy Issues Related to Internet of Things: When Smart Devices Create Big Data, October 2, 2013
  • Speaker, "Obtaining and Using Social Media Evidence," San Diego ESI Forum, July 18, 2013
  • Speaker, Carmel Valley E-Discovery Conference in Del Mar, July 2013
  • Speaker, "Privacy Piracy," KUCI Radio, March 4, 2013
  • Speaker, "The Art of Multi-Tasking: Developing Business while Maintaining a Balanced Life," Lawyers Club of San Diego, February 5, 2013
  • Speaker, "Privacy, Cyber Security & Hackers: What Every Employer Needs to Know," MLA Labor & Employment Seminar, 2012
  • Speaker, "An Ounce of Prevention: Employment Laws in 2012," Presented to JH Cohn, 2012
  • Speaker, "Employment Law Updates for Total Rewards," San Diego Breakfast Counsel, 2012
  • Panelist and Moderator, "Technology, Smart Phones & Tablets: Helping You Balance Your Act," Lawyers Club of San Diego, 2012
  • Legal analyst on KUSI News television explaining current cases and other legal issues of interest, 2010-present
  • Moderator, "Utilizing Vendors and Cost Containment for e-Discovery," Women in eDiscovery Program, 2011
  • Speaker, "E-Discovery Protocols: Global & Domestic Collection and Review," North America Regional Practice Group Annual Seminar, 2011
  • Speaker, "Propounding & Responding to ESI Requests under California's Electronic Discovery Act," 22nd Annual California Alliance of Paralegal Associations Educational Conference in San Diego, 2010
  • Moderator, "Boot Camp Basics for Litigators: California's Electronic Discovery Act," Women in eDiscovery CLE in San Diego, 2009
  • Speaker, American College of Forensic Psychiatry Annual Symposia, 2005, 2007, 2009
  • Speaker, University of San Diego Career Services Panel, 2007 & 2009
  • Speaker, Externship Lunch Program, California Court of Appeals, 4th Circuit, 2007


  • American Bar Association, Subcommittee for Technology for the Litigator - Chair of New Products
  • American Red Cross of San Diego/Imperial Counties - Board Member
  • California Women Lawyers - Member
  • Couture for a Cause - Committee Member (2008-2010)
  • CyberCalifornia - Advisory Board Member
  • Cybersecurity Institute of San Diego - Board Member
  • Kawasaki Disease Foundation - Board Member
  • Lawyers Club of San Diego - Chair of Endorsement Committee and Balance Committee
  • Leukemia and Lymphoma Society - Woman of the Year Candidate (2014)
  • Mother Attorney Mentoring Association of San Diego - Founding Member/Board of Directors (2007-2010) and Past President (2010)
  • Project Concern International, Development Committee - Board Member
  • San Diego County Bar Association, Children at Risk - Member
  • San Diego County Bar Foundation - Member
  • San Diego ESI Forum – Board of Directors (2015) and Steering Committee Member
  • San Diego Society for Human Resource Management - Member
  • Scripps Mercy Auxiliary - President
  • Scripps Mercy Foundation - Board Member
  • Securing Our eCity Foundation - Co-Chair of Policy Committee (2014)
  • State Bar of California - Member
  • Women in eDiscovery San Diego – Board of Directors (2015-2016) and Founding President (2009)