Donald J. Magilligan is a partner at Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy based in the firm’s San Francisco office. Magilligan pursues justice on behalf of wildfire victims, families whose loved ones have died, victims of others’ fraud and negligence, and other just causes.
Magilligan has tried 48 jury trials in a wide variety of cases ranging from breach of contract to homicide. He honed his trial skills during a ten-year career as a prosecutor in Santa Clara County (2012–18) and Contra Costa County (2008–12). Magilligan was recognized for distinguished service by the Santa Clara District Attorney, San Jose Police Department Gang Intelligence Unit, and the San Jose Police Academy where he taught ethics, evidence, and search and seizure.
Magilligan received his J.D. from the University of San Francisco. While at U.S.F., he was a member of the Law Review, served on the Student Budget Committee, and received the CALI award for being the top student in Torts. Magilligan sat on the Faculty-Student Steering Committee at the Leo T. McCarthy Center for Public Service and the Common Good. During law school, Magilligan learned how to try cases by watching experienced prosecutors at the United States Attorney’s Office, San Mateo District Attorney’s Office, and San Francisco District Attorney’s Office during Kamala Harris’s tenure. Magilligan learned how to write during his clerkship with the Honorable Maura Corrigan of the Michigan Supreme Court.
Inspired by his time as a domestic violence prosecutor, Magilligan now sits on the board of directors for CORA, San Mateo County’s only provider of comprehensive intimate partner abuse prevention services including housing, counseling, and litigation support.
Magilligan also sits on the board of the San Mateo County Trial Lawyers Association, which seeks justice for all by preserving and protecting the constitutional right to trial by jury for individuals in San Mateo County.
Magilligan is a member of the Consumer Attorneys of California, where he lectures at conferences on topics including evidence, expert witnesses, and jury selection.