Boyd C. Sleeth

Boyd C. Sleeth



  • University of California, Hastings College of the Law, 1982, J.D., Order of the Coif; Thurston Society; Notes Editor of the Hastings Constitutional Law Quarterly
  • Immaculate Heart College, 1975, B.A.

Professional Admissions / Qualifications

  • California

Boyd's practice focuses on business disputes, particularly those involving unfair business practices, and all aspects of insurance.

Boyd recently resolved a significant dispute between an insurer and producer involving trade practices and ownership of information. He was recently brought into litigation involving dozens of lawsuits against an insurer to guide the client and other attorneys in dealing with significant regulatory threats presented by the cases. Boyd's advice is frequently sought when unique or highly complex insurance questions are involved in litigation and transactional matters. Boyd has handled a broad array of complex business disputes involving trade secrets, unfair business practices and fraud involving computer hardware, publishing and securities.

In the commercial litigation area, his practice has included many securities-related matters, as well as disputes concerning trademark infringement, appropriation of trade secrets, unfair competition, and the performance of computer hardware.

In the insurance area, Boyd's practice embraces a wide range of litigation mattersin both federal and state courts, including environmental pollution coverage disputes, first-party and third-party bad faith cases, and declaratory relief actions addressing a variety of coverage issues.  He serves as lead defense attorney in a number of complex environmental coverage matters involving multiple sites across the country.  Examples of other issues litigated include earth movement losses, the duty to defend and indemnify landlords in actions arising out of rent control violations, the duty to defend wrongful termination claims, and coverage of losses involving arson and fraudulent claims.  Boyd provides insurance clients with coverage analyses of disputed claims that have not ripened into litigation, and with advice on responding to claims to avoid litigation.  He also represents clients in insurance regulatory matters and has appeared at administrative hearings before the Department of Insurance and the Workers' Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau.

Boyd has appeared before not only state and federal courts but also before the New York Stock Exchange, National Association of Securities Dealers, Commodities Futures Trading Commission and California Department of Insurance in litigation ranging from recovery of unsecured margin debts to defending multi-million dollar suits arising out of leveraged buy-out financing transactions.  He litigates such issues as alleged misrepresentation and fraud in the sale of securities, churning, unsuitability of investment recommendations, and inadequate supervision and conversion, among other statutory and common law claims.  Boyd has also handled a large number of disputes between securities broker-dealers and their registered representatives.

Employment History

  • 2003 - Reed Smith
  • 1982 - Crosby Heafey Roach & May (combined with Reed Smith in 2003)
    • Member of the Risk Management Committee