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Esteban Morales

Associate

[email protected]

+1.310.226.7841

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Esteban is an experienced litigator whose practice is principally focused on class action defense and financial services litigation. Esteban has successfully defended both small and large corporate clients targeted in class action suits alleging violations of various federal and state statutes, including the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act, California’s Unfair Competition Law, and California’s Invasion of Privacy Act. Results include dismissals at the pleading stage and without any discovery following aggressive defense strategies. In addition to defending class actions, Esteban has represented clients in corporate, real estate, trust and estate, and securities disputes. He is also a member of the firm's Sports & Entertainment Practice.

Before joining the firm, Esteban served as in-house Counsel for a major broker-dealer with thousands of registered representatives stationed throughout the country. In his capacity as an in-house attorney, Esteban litigated cases, routinely interfaced with insurance carriers and brokers, managed outside counsel, and advised on regulatory matters.

Esteban has been featured in The American Lawyer for his pro bono work with immigrant youth seeking Special Immigrant Juvenile Status. Esteban also previously practiced at an international law firm and was an extern for the Honorable Dale S. Fischer, US District Court, Central District of California.

Education

  • University of California - Los Angeles (JD)
  • Brandeis University (BA)

Experience

Privacy Class Actions

  • Motion to dismiss granted with prejudice (no discovery) in a privacy class action suit filed against a major NBA franchise
  • Motion to dismiss granted in a privacy class action filed against an app developer claiming an app functioned as a tracking device
  • Motion to dismiss granted in privacy class action alleged against public transportation authority
  • Demurrer granted in California Invasion of Privacy Act class action against national retailer
  • Summary judgment granted in favor of global distributions systems provider in class action alleging TCPA violation
  • Voluntary dismissal of TCPA class action alleged against auto dealership network
  • Voluntary dismissal of privacy class action alleged against creditor
  • Voluntary dismissal of FACTA class action alleged against local service provider

Securities

  • Managed litigation (including numerous FINRA arbitrations) for four independent broker-dealers
  • Advised clients in connection with SEC and FINRA exams and inquiries
  • Represented a federal equity receiver pursuing claims against former officers, directors, and auditors associated with a Ponzi scheme

Other Litigation

  • Represented medical technology company in product liability litigation relating to EMS supplies and surgical tools
  • Second-chaired trial for declaratory relief involving assignment of a lease and prevailed on a motion for non-suit

Recognition & Awards

  • Southern California Super Lawyers Rising Star: Class Action (2018-2019)
  • Recipient of Public Counsel Law Center Children's Rights Project Award

Languages

- Spanish

Recent Insights

News & Press

Viewpoints

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Monthly TCPA Digest — March 2020

March 19, 2020 | Article | By Joshua Briones, Russell Fox, Esteban Morales, Elana R. Safner

This month’s TCPA digest reviews the FCC’s order mandating STIR/SHAKEN implementation by June 30, 2021 and provides insight on TCPA cases including Barr, which could invalidate the TCPA’s ATDS provisions.
Read more
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TCPA Litigation Update — Putting the Brakes on TCPA Litigation

March 19, 2020 | Article | By Joshua Briones, Esteban Morales

This month’s digest reviews the FCC’s order mandating STIR/SHAKEN implementation by June 30th, 2021 and provides insight on TCPA cases including Barr, which could invalidate the TCPA’s ATDS provisions.
Read more
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TCPA Litigation Update — Breaking: U.S. Supreme Court Agrees to Decide Whether TCPA Exception Is Unconstitutional

January 14, 2020 | Article | By Joshua Briones, Natalie Prescott, Esteban Morales, Elana R. Safner

Our first TCPA Digest of 2020 provides insight into the Supreme Court’s decision to hear the potentially game-changing Barr TCPA case and a list of deadlines related to the recently enacted TRACED Act.
Read more
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Monthly TCPA Digest – January 2020

January 14, 2020 | Article | By Joshua Briones, Russell Fox, Esteban Morales, Natalie Prescott, Elana R. Safner

Our first TCPA Digest of 2020 provides insight into the Supreme Court’s decision to hear the potentially game-changing Barr TCPA case and a list of deadlines related to the recently enacted TRACED Act.
Read more
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Monthly TCPA Digest – November 2019

November 11, 2019 | Article | By Joshua Briones, Russell Fox, Esteban Morales, Elana R. Safner

Mintz’s November TCPA Digest covers Capital One’s Petition for Declaratory Ruling as well as the influence of the Ninth Circuit’s Marks ruling on recent TCPA decisions.
Read more
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TCPA Class Action Update — Establishing Use of an ATDS in the 9th Circuit Still a Hurdle

November 11, 2019 | Article | By Joshua Briones, Esteban Morales

We are pleased to present the latest edition of our Monthly TCPA Digest, providing insights and news related to the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). This month, in our Class Action Update, we look at how, or if, the Ninth Circuit’s 2018 Marks ruling — considered groundbreaking because it appeared to expand the definition of what constitutes an Automatic Telephone Dialing System (ATDS) — has influenced Ninth Circuit decisions in recent TCPA cases.
Read more
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Monthly TCPA Digest – July 2019

July 18, 2019 | Article

This issue covers recent TCPA-related FCC activity, pending robocall legislation, and a class action ruling in the Eight Circuit upholding a significant reduction in TCPA damages.
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TCPA Class Action Update: Commercial Purpose? Not Enough.

June 17, 2019 | Article | By Esteban Morales

All too often, plaintiffs alleging TCPA violations premised on faxes take the position that although a fax is not an advertisement on its face, it clears the advertisement hurdle because of an underlying profit motive. That’s a no-go confirmed the Third Circuit. Mauthe v. Optum Inc., No. 18-2894, 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 15742 (3d Cir. May 28, 2019).
Read more
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Monthly TCPA Digest – June 2019

June 17, 2019 | Article | By Joshua Briones, Russell Fox, Alexander Hecht, Esteban Morales, Matthew Novian, Elana R. Safner

This TCPA Digest covers an FCC rule allowing default call blocking services and a 4th Circuit ruling upholding a $61M judgment against Dish Network for a third-party agent's actions.
Read more
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INSIGHT: California’s Privacy Act—Watch for an Expanding Private Right of Action

May 3, 2019 | Blog | By Joshua Briones, Esteban Morales, Matthew Novian

The California Consumer Privacy Act takes effect on January 1, 2020, but amendments are expected. In an article recently published by Bloomberg Law, Mintz attorneys Joshua Briones, Esteban Morales and Matthew Novian discuss the April 9 hearing on SB-561, a bill that would expand the private right of action and remove compliance opportunities for businesses, and explain why the bill should be closely watched.
Read more

News & Press

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Managing Member of Mintz’s Los Angeles Office Joshua Briones and Associate Esteban Morales co-authored a Bloomberg Law Professional Perspective column on covid-19-related class actions.
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Law360 reported that a Mintz litigation team won a Motion to Stay on behalf of its client, software provider Citrix, in a putative class action case alleging that the company conducted illegal telemarketing calls. The decision will put the case on hold to await the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Barr v. American Association of Political Consultants Inc., in which oral arguments are scheduled to take place remotely on May 6.
The California Consumer Privacy Act takes effect in about eight months, but amendments are expected. An April hearing on a bill that would expand the private right of action and remove compliance opportunities for businesses showed it needs to be carefully followed, say Mintz attorneys Joshua Briones, Esteban Morales and Matthew Novian.
This Law360 Expert Analysis column discusses how an earlier Ninth Circuit decision – which provided a clear rule regarding plaintiffs' standing to assert claims concerning products they did not purchase – has been used to defeat defendants’ motions to dismiss. A team of Mintz attorneys including Member Joshua Briones and Associates Esteban Morales and Nicole Ozeran authored the piece.
This Law360 "Expert Analysis" piece discusses Lorenzo v. U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission — a significant securities fraud case before the U.S. Supreme Court —which is likely the first of many opportunities the court will have to roll back expansive interpretations of securities law and deter plaintiffs from filing low-quality complaints. A team of Joshua Briones, Esteban Morales and Matthew Novian authored the column.
Joshua Briones, a Managing Member in Mintz’s LA office and Esteban Morales, an Associate in that office, provided comment to a Law360 article looking at a class action suit against BART, California’s public transportation systems.
Mintz's Joshua Briones, Esteban Morales, and Natalie Prescott authored an article in The Daily Journal covering a Kentucky federal court dismissal of a lawsuit brought by a drone pilot against the “Drone Slayer.”
Joshua Briones, a Managing Member in Mintz’s Los Angeles office; Esteban Morales, an Associate in that office; and Natalie Prescott, an Associate in Mintz’s San Diego office, authored this Law360 article discussing the new legal challenges presented by drones.
Mintz and Ansell Grimm & Aaron, P.C., have achieved a dismissal – among the first of its kind – on behalf of Work Out World, which faced a class action alleging violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act and attempting certification of a nationwide class. 
Member Joshua Briones and Associate Esteban Morales authored this National Law Journal article on the reality of automated vehicles or self-driving cars expectation that product liability and privacy cottage industries will develop to respond to malfunctioning autonomous technology in the future.  
Joshua Briones, Managing Member in Mintz’s Los Angeles office, and Associates Esteban Morales and Crystal Lopez, authored this Inside Counsel article covering three U.S. Supreme Court decisions in separate Telephone Consumer Protection Act TCPA class action cases.

Events

Panelist
Mar
5
2020

Lawyer for a Day

Los Angeles, CA

Speaker
Mar
6
2019
Speaker
Dec
5
2017

West Coast Director Education Forum

American College of Corporate Directors

Renaissance Hotel at Los Angeles International Airport, Los Angeles, CA

Panelist
Apr
10
2017

Guide to Consumer Communications and Compliance: TCPA, FDCPA, CAN-SPAM, and CIPA

IAPP KnowledgeNet CLE

SDG&E Energy Innovation Center 4760 Clairemont Mesa Blvd. San Diego, CA