Spencer A. Burkholz

Spencer A. Burkholz


Our firm of talented lawyers is among the best in the U.S. and continues to achieve outstanding recoveries for our clients.


Spencer Burkholz is a partner in Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP’s San Diego office and a member of the Firm’s Management Committee. He has over 25 years of experience in prosecuting securities class actions and private actions on behalf of large institutional investors. Spence was one of the lead trial attorneys in Jaffe v. Household International in the Northern District of Illinois, a securities class action that obtained a record-breaking $1.575 billion settlement after 14 years of litigation, including a six-week jury trial in 2009 that resulted in a verdict for plaintiffs. Spence has also recovered billions of dollars for injured shareholders in cases such as Enron ($7.2 billion), WorldCom ($657 million), Countrywide ($500 million), Qwest ($445 million), Wells Fargo ($300 million), McKesson ($141 million), and Cardinal Health ($109 million). 

Spence has received the AV Preeminent certification by Martindale-Hubbell (the highest rating available). He has also been named a Titan of the Plaintiffs Bar by Law360, a Leading Lawyer in America, a Leading Plaintiff Financial Lawyer, and a Leading Plaintiff Consumer Lawyer by Lawdragon, a Plaintiffs’ Lawyer Trailblazer by The National Law Journal, a Top Plaintiff Lawyer by the Daily Journal, a Recommended Lawyer by The Legal 500, a Super Lawyer by Super Lawyers Magazine, and a Southern California Best Lawyer, a Best Lawyer in America, and a Lawyer of the Year by Best Lawyers®. Additionally, Spence has been named Plaintiff Attorney of the Year, a National Practice Area Star, a Local Litigation Star, a State Litigation Star, a California Star, a Top 20 Trial Lawyer in California, and a Top 100 Trial Lawyer by Benchmark Litigation. He has also been recognized as a Top Lawyer in San Diego by San Diego Magazine.

Spence earned his Bachelor of Arts degree, cum laude, from Clark University, and received his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Virginia School of Law.


  • Rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Titan of the Plaintiffs Bar, Law360, 2024
  • Leading Lawyer in America, Lawdragon, 2018-2024
  • Best Lawyer in America, Best Lawyers®, 2018-2024
  • Top Plaintiff Lawyer, Daily Journal, 2017, 2023
  • Leading Plaintiff Financial Lawyer, Lawdragon, 2019-2023
  • Litigation Star, Benchmark Litigation, 2023
  • Top 20 Trial Lawyer in California, Benchmark Litigation, 2019, 2023
  • Plaintiffs’ Lawyer Trailblazer, The National Law Journal, 2020, 2022
  • Top Lawyer in San Diego, San Diego Magazine, 2013-2022
  • Southern California Best Lawyer, Best Lawyers®, 2018-2021
  • Super Lawyer, Super Lawyers Magazine, 2015-2016, 2020
  • Top 100 Trial Lawyer, Benchmark Litigation, 2018-2020
  • Lawyer of the Year, Best Lawyers®, 2020
  • National Practice Area Star, Benchmark Litigation, 2020
  • Local Litigation Star, Benchmark Litigation, 2015-2018, 2020
  • Recommended Lawyer, The Legal 500, 2017-2019
  • California Star, Benchmark Litigation, 2019
  • State Litigation Star, Benchmark Litigation, 2019
  • Plaintiff Attorney of the Year, Benchmark Litigation, 2018

Practice Areas


University of Virginia School of Law, J.D., 1989

Clark University, B.A., 1985, cum laude

  • Phi Beta Kappa


  • California
  • United States Courts of Appeals for the Second, Third, Seventh, and Ninth Circuits
  • United States District Courts for the Northern, Central, and Southern Districts of California
  • United States District Court for the District of Colorado

Notable Cases


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