Byron G. Stier
Co-Director of the Summer Law Program in Vancouver and Professor of Law
B.A., summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, 1993, University of Pennsylvania; J.D., 1996, Harvard University; LL.M., 2005, and Hon. Abraham L. Freedman Fellow, 2003-05, Temple University; Member, New York State Bar
Phone: (213) 738-6809
An expert in mass tort litigation, Byron Stier handled a number of controversial cases of national interest while in practice and brings his insider's perspective to the law classroom.
"Even though I love launching off into the stratosphere of theoretical debates, I always feel the need to come back to earth and discuss how this is going to affect the students and their future practices."
Professor Stier began his legal career in 1996 with the firm of Jones Day in New York. During his five years with the firm, where he primarily handled cases involving products liability and commercial litigation, he served on a lead counsel team that defended the tobacco industry against numerous class action lawsuits. In 2001, he joined Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom as an associate in the firm's mass torts group, where he represented a consumer product company in a federal multidistrict litigation concerning cough-cold medications and appetite suppressants.
Professor Stier left private practice in 2003 to return to academia as an Abraham L. Freedman Fellow and Lecturer in Law at Temple University School of Law in Philadelphia. In 2005, he joined the Southwestern faculty, where he teaches courses on Torts, Civil Procedure, Legal Profession, Mass Tort Litigation, Global Tort Litigation and Products Liability. He also serves as Co-Director of the Summer Law Program in Vancouver and faculty advisor to the Southwestern Law Review. He was named the 2009 Irving D. and Florence Rosenberg Professor of Law in recognition of his outstanding service, teaching and scholarship.
A former senior editor of the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy, Professor Stier has focused his research and writing on mass tort litigation while proposing systemic reforms, and his scholarship has been cited by federal and state courts, legal treatises and law school casebooks. In addition, he serves as founding editor of the Mass Tort Litigation Blog. He has been quoted on related issues in major newspapers and news services, including the Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, San Jose Mercury News, Houston Chronicle, Philadelphia Inquirer, Reuters, Forbes, National Law Journal, Los Angeles Daily News, Las Vegas Review-Journal and Legal Intelligencer, as well as All Things Considered on National Public Radio (NPR). In addition, he has spoken at numerous law school symposia nationally and internationally on the subject of mass torts and co-chaired a symposium on asbestos litigation in conjunction with the Southwestern Law Review.
Professor Stier aims to inspire students with his passion for both the intellectual possibilities and practical applications of the law. "Even though I love launching off into the stratosphere of theoretical debates," he explained, "I always feel the need to come back to earth and discuss how this is going to affect the students and their future practices."
Books and Chapters
PROFESSIONAL RESPONSIBILITY (West's Bridge to Practice Series; West Academic Publishing, forthcoming 2014)
Collective Litigation in Cultural Context: A Comparative Analysis in CLASS ACTIONS IN CONTEXT: HOW ECONOMICS, POLITICS AND CULTURE SHAPE COLLECTIVE LITIGATION (with I. Tzankova; D. Hensler, C. Hodges and I. Tzankova, eds.; Edward Elgar Publishing, forthcoming 2014)
Film and Mass Tort Litigation in the United States: A Civil Action and Erin Brockovich in LAW AND POPULAR CULTURE: INTERNATIONAL PERSPECTIVES (M. Asimow, K. Brown and D. Papke, eds.; Cambridge Scholars Publishing, forthcoming 2014)
The Promise and Peril of Media and Culture: The Gulf Coast Claims Facility and the Toyota Unintended Acceleration Litigation in the United States in CLASS ACTIONS IN CONTEXT: HOW ECONOMICS, POLITICS AND CULTURE SHAPE COLLECTIVE LITIGATION (D. Hensler, C. Hodges and I. Tzankova, eds.; Edward Elgar Publishing, forthcoming 2014)
Class Action Versus Claims Fund: Lessons from the BP Gulf Oil Spill, STANFORD JOURNAL OF COMPLEX LITIGATION (Symposium Issue, forthcoming 2014)
The Sale and Settlement of Mass Tort Claims: Alternative Litigation Finance and a Possible Future of Mass Tort Resolution, 23 WIDENER LAW JOURNAL 193 (Symposium Issue, 2013)
The Gulf Coast Claims Facility as Quasi-Public Fund: Transparency and Independence in Claim Administrator Compensation, 30 MISSISSIPPI COLLEGE SCHOOL OF LAW REVIEW 255 (Symposium Issue, 2011)
Promotion of Off-Label Use: In Favor of a Regulatory Retreat, 19 ALBANY LAW JOURNAL OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY 609 (Symposium Issue, 2009)
Another Jackpot (In)Justice: Verdict Variability and Issue Preclusion in Mass Torts, 36 PEPPERDINE LAW REVIEW 715 (2009)
Crimtorts, Class Actions, and the Emerging Mass Tort Method, 17 WIDENER LAW JOURNAL 893 (Symposium Issue, 2008)
Now It's Personal: Punishment and Mass Tort Litigation After Philip Morris v. Williams, 2 CHARLESTON LAW REVIEW 433 (Symposium Issue, 2008)
Perspectives on Asbestos Litigation: Overview and Preview, 37 SOUTHWESTERN UNIVERSITY LAW REVIEW 459 (with A. Calnan; Symposium Issue, 2008)
Jackpot Justice: Verdict Variability and the Mass Tort Class Action, 80 TEMPLE LAW REVIEW 1013 (2007)
Phenylpropanolamine and Hemorrhagic Stroke in the Hemorrhagic Stroke Project: A Reappraisal in the Context of Science, the Food and Drug Administration, and the Law, 16 ANNALS EPIDEMIOLOGY 49 (with C. Hennekens; 2006)
Resolving the Class Action Crisis: Mass Tort Litigation as Network, 2005 UTAH LAW REVIEW 863 (2005)
Lawyers Are Much More Useful Than They Seem, 21 NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL A25 (with S. Bennett; 1998)