Katy M. Young is a distinguished lawyer based in San Francisco, California. A Super Lawyers “Rising Star” since 2014, Ms. Young is a founding partner of the Ad Astra Law Group, LLP where she focuses on business and commercial litigation. Her specialties include computer fraud and abuse litigation, financial services litigation, business torts, breach of contract, professional negligence, real estate, and construction defects. Dedicated to advancing and protecting her clients' interests, Ms. Young assists individuals and business owners in resolving contentious disputes with one another.
Ms. Young originally studied to become a teacher but switched paths during her time as an undergrad at the University of the Pacific where she played Division 1 water polo. As she tells it, a pivotal moment came when she won a unanimous mock jury verdict in class defending a subject she disagreed with:
My philosophy professor divided the class in two and assigned each side to defend a certain position in a mock trial setting as our final exam. I did not agree at all with what I was assigned to defend and yet I won a unanimous verdict in this mock trial setting. The professor took me aside and said that I had a gift and should consider practicing law. Shortly after I switched over to pre-law and I have never looked back."
After receiving her Bachelor of Arts, cum laude, in 2004, Ms. Young went on to study law at the University of San Francisco School of Law during which time she was a judicial extern for Chief Magistrate Judge James Larson in the Northern District of California. She earned her Juris Doctor, magna cum laude, in 2009 and began her career as an associate attorney with the law firm Nossaman, LLP. She immediately welcomed the challenge of handling all aspects of complex business litigation, from drafting and answering complaints, propounding and responding to discovery and extensive document review to motion practice, trial preparation, and settlement efforts.
Despite her decision to step away from teaching and into law, Ms. Young remains an influential figure in the lives of many young and aspiring attorneys. Today, she mentors for the USF Women Lawyers Student Group and recently participated in the San Mateo County Office of Information Career Training Committee, which helps local schools design programs to help guide students toward professional careers.
What sets Ms. Young apart from her colleagues is her commitment to thinking practically from the business owner's perspective. She is well versed in business transactions, including drafting and interpreting contracts, licensing agreements, leases, trademarks, private placement securities, and business formation which inform her litigation decisions. She is also dedicated to providing the best services for her clients and strives to give one hundred percent every step of the way. She actively listens and uses her grit and dogged tenacity to bring about the best resolution that the circumstances allow.
As a leader in her field, Ms. Young keeps her finger on the pulse of prevailing trends in business law. Most recently, she has been closely following the pending vote to legalize recreational marijuana in the state of California. She noted:
I have been cultivating a practice area in business disputes for the cannabis industry. In California, we're about to vote on recreational legal marijuana and there is already a robust medical marijuana industry in the state. Medicinal, and soon recreational, marijuana-based businesses need sophisticated litigators to manage the disputes that arise in more traditional industries, but with the special considerations that the emerging legal cannabis industry requires.
After her first seven years of practice, Ms. Young aims to continue leading her growing practice while providing her clients with the best possible care and results. In the next three to five years she plans to bring in more like-minded attorneys to work on her team.
When Ms. Young is not spending her time fighting on behalf of her clientele, she is running after her two-year-old son who keeps her very active.
Detailed Career Information
Education & Certification
Professional Memberships & Community Involvement
American Bar Association • Bar Association of San Francisco • Rotary Club of Berkeley, CA (since 2012) • Edward J. McFetridge American Inn of Court (since 2011)
Intern for the Office of Chief Trial Counsel (2007) • Associate Attorney at Nossaman LLP (2009) • Principal Attorney at The Law Office of Katy M. Young (2013) • Partner at Ad Astra Law Group, LLP (2014-present)
Awards & Honors
Super Lawyers, “Rising Star” (2014-2016)