Terrance J. Evans is a Partner in the San Francisco and Los Angeles offices of Duane Morris LLP, where he serves as the Co-Leader of the firm’s Banking and Financial Services Practice. Mr. Evans is also the Co-Chair of the Duane Morris San Francisco Diversity and Inclusion Committee. His practice is focused on representing clients in federal and state trial and appellate courts across the United States including the United States Supreme Court. Mr. Evans also regularly counsels clients regarding racial justice and diversity and inclusion issues. He has led dozens of diversity trainings for judges, lawyers, law students, and members of the community around the United States.
Mr. Evans is Director of Region IX of the National Bar Association, the largest Black Bar Association in the world. Mr. Evans is Vice Chair-Elect of the California Lawyers Association, the largest voluntary state bar association in the United States. Mr. Evans is the Immediate Past President of the Charles Houston Bar Association, the oldest Black Bar Association in California. He is the Co-Founder and Co-Chair of the CLA Racial Justice Committee; Immediate Past Chair of the Litigation Section of the California Lawyers Association; Co-Chair of the American Bar Association ICLC Diversity & Inclusion Committee, Member of the Bar Association of San Francisco Judicial & Finance Committees; and he is the first Black man elected to serve as a statewide representative on the Board of the California Lawyers Association. Mr. Evans has spoken at more than 180 diversity, equity, and inclusion programs and civil rights programs in partnership with more than 65 law schools, bar associations, colleges, universities, high schools, law firms, churches, and other organizations. Mr. Evans also frequently appears on national and local television and radio discussing issues ranging from the United States Supreme Court and California courts to important legislation and civil rights issues.
In 2016, Mr. Evans was honored by the National Bar Association as one of the top African American attorneys in the USA under age 40. In 2017, he was honored by the Charles Houston Bar Association for his work promoting diversity and inclusion in the legal profession. In 2018, Mr. Evans was honored by the Minority Bar Coalition for his contributions to promoting diversity and inclusion throughout California. In 2019, Mr. Evans was honored by New Dawn Vallejo for his work promoting diversity and inclusion and pro bono legal services. In 2020, Mr. Evans was recognized by Chambers for his efforts to promote diversity and inclusion throughout the United States. In 2021, Mr. Evans was honored by the Bar Association of San Francisco and Justice and Diversity Center for his diversity and inclusion work in Northern California and throughout the United States. In 2021, Mr. Evans was also honored by American Lawyer Magazine as a Trail Blazer.
In 2022, Mr. Evans was honored by the Los Angeles Times as being one of the foremost leaders on diversity, equity, and inclusion issues in the State of California. In 2022, Mr. Evans was also honored by the Minority Bar Coalition for a second time for his efforts to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion throughout the United States. During his legal career, Mr. Evans has raised more than $500,000 for scholarships for underprivileged students. Mr. Evans has also created five annual scholarships that have provided tens of thousands of dollars to underprivileged students in the Asian, Black, Hispanic, Native American, and LGBTQ Communities.
With respect to the insurance industry, Mr. Evans concentrates his practice in complex commercial litigation and policy interpretation and analysis. He has represented commercial primary, excess and umbrella insurers in a wide range of multimillion-dollar cases, including declaratory relief, bad faith, rescission, subrogation, indemnity, additional insurance, interpleader and reformation actions. Mr. Evans has served as national coordinating counsel and monitoring counsel for insurance companies evaluating multi-jurisdictional claims where the exposure was estimated in the hundreds of millions of dollars.
Mr. Evans has extensively advised commercial insurers and policy holders regarding primary, excess and additional insurance obligations in jurisdictions around the United States. His experience includes analyzing and advising clients regarding claims related to the construction industry, automobile industry, homeowners associations, real estate agents, accountants, enrolled agents, attorneys, ministers, international religious organizations, intellectual property, trademarks, mobile home parks, international imports and exports, interstate commerce, livestock, retail chains, wineries, cemeteries and other commercial establishments. He has also advised insurers regarding issues related to national security and the U.S. military.
In relation to the banking industry, Mr. Evans has represented international, national and community banks and loan service companies in consumer lending litigation, complex commercial litigation and various secured transactions, including commercial and residential nonjudicial foreclosures; unified foreclosures; judicial foreclosures; creditors' rights issues, which includes obtaining relief from stay in various bankruptcy courts; mechanics' lien lawsuits; stop notice claims; abatement issues; priority contests; RESPA claims; forbearance agreements; municipality disputes; transfer tax disputes; property tax disputes; short sales; loan purchase and sale agreements; predatory lending claims; discriminatory lending claims; Fair Credit Reporting Act claims; Rosenthal Act claims; California Consumer Credit Reporting Agencies Act claims; Fair Debt Collection Practices Act claims; Claims related to the Automobile Sales Finance Act (ASFA), also known as the Rees-Levering Motor Vehicle Sales and Finance Act (Civ. Code, § 2981 et seq.); California Ralph Act claims; California Tom Bane Act claims; and many other issues. Mr. Evans has extensive experience in representing banks and other financial institutions in title insurance coverage matters. In particular, Mr. Evans has analyzed coverage under title insurance policies, negotiated coverage with title insurance companies and successfully litigated numerous coverage disputes. Mr. Evans has also successfully represented financial institutions in discrimination cases in state courts, federal courts, and before the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing.
Mr. Evans has negotiated settlements in dozens of multimillion-dollar cases, litigated in more than ten states, and has participated in more than 100 mediations, mandatory settlement conferences, and other forms of alternative dispute resolution for matters in both federal and state courts. Mr. Evans has also successfully represented clients in appellate matters, including matters before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Mr. Evans has spoken at insurance coverage seminars, business development workshops, and diversity conferences around the country. Additionally, he has been very involved in the firm's pro bono efforts.
Mr. Evans has been recognized both locally and nationally for his professional accomplishments. In 2016, he was appointed to the Minority Corporate Counsel Association's (MCCA) Next Generation (N-Gen) Advisory Board, formed of in-house and law firm attorneys to assist with MCCA's efforts to promote diversity and inclusion in the legal profession nationwide. In 2012, Mr. Evans was appointed as co-chair of the American Bar Association's Section of Litigation, Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee. In 2010 and 2008, he was honored by the American Business Trial Lawyers of Northern California for his dedication and professionalism. In addition, he was named one of the top 100 minority associates in the United States for 2007 by the Stakeholder Organization. Mr. Evans has also received special honors from the NAACP, the Congressional Black Caucus, the 100 Black Men of Los Angeles, the Young Black Scholars Program, the Black Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles, the American Legion and many other organizations.
Mr. Evans graduated from Cornell University, where he made multiple appearances on the Dean's List, and was a Cornell Tradition Fellow. He also graduated from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles with recognition, and he was ranked as the Third Best Oral Advocate in the United States at the Frederick Douglass Moot Court Competition.
Obtained on behalf of a national bank after oral argument in a multimillion-dollar banking case in Orange County Superior Court an adoption of a tentative ruling and a sustained Demurrer to all plaintiffs' claims, including claims for unfair business practices, breach of contract and fraud.
Won a judgment for a national bank following a successful Demurrer to a Second Amended Complaint in a habitability case that was filed after the bank's foreclosure on a multi-million dollar apartment complex in Contra Costa County.
Obtained summary judgment on behalf of a mezzanine lender in the Complex Division of the Los Angeles County Superior Court (Central Civil West) in what is among the largest coordinated securities actions in California history, where plaintiffs were alleging $200 million in damages.
Obtained on behalf of Capital One Bank, N. A., and its predecessor in interest, ING Bank, FSB, a dismissal of an appeal before the California Court of Appeal, First Appellate District, Division Five, upholding a judgment for ING in a dispute that included issues related to the Home Owners Loan Act and the Dodd-Frank Act. The dismissal also left intact a second judgment in favor of ING from the Sonoma County Superior Court.
Represented Wells Fargo Bank, N. A. and Berkadia Commercial Mortgage, LLC, in Contra Costa County Superior Court, in a multimillion lawsuit stemming from claims of retaliatory eviction and habitability following Wells Fargo's successful foreclosure on an apartment complex in Pittsburg, California. Successfully negotiated a favorable settlement that required financial contributions from neither client.
Represented an insurance company in a multimillion dollar lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California, San Jose Division. Discovery efforts resulted in plaintiff withdrawing its contribution and equitable indemnity claim in connection with an underlying Calderon Proceeding involving construction defects in large residential development.
Obtained on behalf of Capital One, N.A., in the United States District Court for the Central District of California, a dismissal with prejudice of a high exposure lawsuit in connection with a foreclosure on a luxury home located in Los Angeles, California.
- Obtained an order from the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, San Francisco Division, dismissing a multimillion-dollar lawsuit against ING Bank, FSB that accused the bank of predatory lending in connection with two mortgages. Larrieu v. ING Bank, FSB, No. C11-6167 (N.D. Cal. March 12, 2012).
Represented school district in a condemnation action against a real estate developer, wherein the school district successfully obtained a non-exclusive easement across undeveloped property owned by the real estate developer.
Represented group of insurers in a multi-million dollar interpleader action against more than three thousand claimants with pending toxic tort litigation filed in courts throughout the United States.
Represented small business in its Petition for Redetermination before the California Franchise Tax Board.
Served as lead counsel for a major financial institution at a trial de novo hearing, during which the court agreed to reduce a judgment against the financial institution.
Recovered several million dollars for claimants involved in asbestos litigation.
Drafted reciprocal easement agreement for group of real estate developers.
Drafted ballot measure for health maintenance organization in its effort to obtain public approval for its construction development project.
Represented several general contractors and subcontractors involved in construction defect litigation.
Represented real estate agents, accountants, and enrolled agents in professional liability litigation.
Represented both landlords and tenants in unlawful detainer actions.
Represented insurers and policy holders involved in declaratory relief, bad faith, contribution, interpleader and indemnity litigation.
Negotiated several multimillion-dollar loan purchase and sale agreements for national and local banks.
Recovered tens of millions of dollars in collateral for international, national, and local banks and loan service companies.
Won summary judgment for lender in a multimillion-dollar stop notice lawsuit.
Won dismissal with prejudice for several banks involved in multimillion-dollar mechanics' lien lawsuits.
Won relief from stay for several banks involved in multimillion-dollar foreclosures.
Successfully represented several banks involved in priority contests.
Successfully represented banks involved in title insurance disputes.
Secured transfer tax refund for bank involved in municipality dispute.
Served as outside national coordinating counsel for international bank.
- Supreme Court of the United States
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
- U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California
- U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California
- U.S. District Court for the Central District of California
- U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California
- U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of California
- U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of California
- U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California
- U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of California
- Supreme Court of California
- Court of Appeals of California
- Loyola University School of Law, J.D., with recognition
- Cornell University, B.A.
- Duane Morris LLP
- Partner, 2011-present
- Associate, 2006-2010
- Hancock Rothert & Bunshoft LLP
- Minority Corporate Counsel Association (MCCA)
- Next Generation (N-Gen) Advisory Board, 2016-present
- California State Bar Litigation Executive Committee
- California Bar Association
- American Bar Association
- Section of Litigation
-- Articles Editor, Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee
--- Co-Chair, Employment Subcommittee -- 2016 Co-Chair of Insurance Coverage Seminar
-- 2015 Vice-Chair of Insurance Coverage Seminar
-- Co-Chair of Insurance Coverage Diversity Subcommittee
- Association of Defense Counsel of Northern California and Nevada
- California Black Lawyers Association
- The Bar Association of San Francisco
- American Business Trial Lawyers of Northern California
- President, Leadership Development Committee 2013- Present
Honors and Awards
- Selected as a finalist for Innovation in Diversity and Inclusion by the California Legal Awards, 2023
- Named to LA Times’ Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Accessibility – Trends, Updates & DEIA Leadership Forum Magazine as a “DEIA Visionary"
- Listed in Lawyers of Color's "Law Firm Leaders," 2022
- Named to The American Lawyer's list of West Trailblazers, July 1, 2021
- Named one of the top 40 attorneys under the age of 40 in the United States for 2016 by the National Bar Association
- 2016 Leadership Award from the American Bar Association Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee
- Named by Super Lawyers Magazine as a Northern California Rising Star, 2012-2017 in the areas of Banking and Insurance
- Named one of the Top 100 Minority Associates in the United States for 2007 by the Stakeholder Organization
- 3rd Best Oral Advocate Frederick Douglass National Moot Court Competition
- Who's Who American Law Students
- Semifinalist Frederick Douglass Western Regional Moot Court Competition
- Winner of the Black Women Lawyers of Los Angeles Annual Essay Competition
- Cornell University Tradition Fellowship
- Congressional Black Caucus Scholarship
- Co-author, "Would California's Foreclosure Moratorium Be Enforceable?" Law360, May 11, 2020
- Author, "Judicial Council of California Adopts COVID-19 Emergency Rules," Duane Morris Alert, April 7, 2020
- Co-author, "Young Lawyer Track Mediation Boot Camp 101: Preparing Your Coverage Case for Resolution," Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee CLE Seminar, March 2014, American Bar Association, Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee Written Materials
- Co-author, "Please Excuse the Delay: The Consequences of Untimely Notice, Slow Investigation, and the Failure to Communicate," chapter in the American Bar Association's annual Insurance Coverage Book, March 2012
- Author, "A Review of Complicated Priority Disputes and Lien Issues Under California Law," chapter in Advanced Issues in Foreclosure, National Business Institute, 2011
- Author, "Complex Commercial Foreclosure Issues: A Review of California Foreclosure Law Regarding Possession and Receivership," chapter in Advanced Issues in Foreclosure, National Business Institute, 2011
- Interviewed, “How One Duane Morris Partner Is Diversifying the Next Generation of Legal Talent,” The Recorder, November 1, 2023
- Quoted, "Alameda Co. Race Will Have Historic Outcome with 1st-ever Black DA," ABC7 Newsbreak, October 17, 2022
- Quoted, "DA Races in Alameda, Contra Costa Counties Could Have Historic Outcomes," ABC7news.com, June 6, 2022
- Interviewed, "Justice Stephen Breyer's Rise to the Supreme Court," BNC News, January 27, 2022
Selected Speaking Engagements
- Facilitator, "The Past, Present and Future of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the U.S. Banking and Finance Industry," Duane Morris Banking and Finance General Counsel Roundtable, November 17, 2022
- Speaker, "How Lawyers Can Eliminate Bias Related to Racism, Sexism, Homophobia, and Transphobia in the Legal Profession," ABA 2022 Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee CLE Seminar, Tucson, Arizona, March 4, 2022
- Moderator, "How to Protect Our Civil Rights and Advance Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Before It’s Too Late," 9th Annual Citywide Diversity and Inclusion Networking Event and Panel Discussion, Webinar, October 14, 2021
- Presenter, "Lessons Learned from Recent Headlines and Court Rulings on Contract Cases Across Industries," COVID-19: Navigating Forward Webinar Series, Duane Morris LLP, March 11, 2021
- Moderator, "Building a Coalition for Racial Justice and Civil Rights During a Time of Crisis," California Lawyers Association, September 17, 2020
- Speaker, "Juneteenth Celebration," Charles Houston Bar Association, June 19, 2020
- Speaker, "A COVID-19 Discussion: Banking, Real Estate and California Assembly Bill 828," Webinar, May 15, 2020
- Moderator, "Standing Up for Justice: Challenging the Erosion of Civil Rights, Diversity and Inclusion," Duane Morris LLP, San Francisco, October 10, 2019
Host, "Should I Go? Pros and Cons of Going In-House," Duane Morris LLP, San Francisco, April 24, 2019
Speaker, "Recoupment of Defense Costs: What is the State of the Law?" ABA 2019 Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee CLE Seminar, Tucson, Arizona, March 2, 2019
Moderator, "Building Your Business on Social Media Without Ruining Your Reputation," Duane Morris LLP, San Francisco, August 16, 2018
- Moderator, "Diversity and Inclusion v. Intolerance and Hatred: Where Do We Go From Here?" Bar Association of San Francisco 5th Annual Citywide Diversity and Inclusion Networking Event and Panel Discussion, San Francisco, October 19, 2017
Speaker, "Overcoming Blind Spots & Unconscious Bias to Create a Culture of Inclusion," Legalweek West's LegalDiversityForum, San Francisco, June 13, 2017
- Moderator, "Closing the Deal: From the Boardroom to the Courtroom," Embarcadero Networking Group, San Francisco, August 3, 2017
- Host, "How Emerging Data Platforms Are Shaping the Future of CREF Transactions," MBA's CREF Connects Data Driven Deals Regional Event, San Francisco, April 27, 2017
- Panelist, "A Critical Discussion of Diversity and Inclusion in the Insurance Industry," Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee CLE Seminar, Tucson, AZ, March 3, 2017
- Moderator, Citywide Diversity and Inclusion Program, San Francisco, October 13, 2016
- Host, "Leveraging LinkedIn for Small Business," Embarcadero Networking Group, San Francisco, June 8, 2016
- Speaker, "Same Insured, Different Risks: Who Pays When Insurance Coverage Overlaps?" 2016 ABA Insurance Coverage Seminar, March 4, 2016
- Moderator, "The Pros and Cons of Trading Your Personal Identity for A Successful Career, BASF & Duane Morris Citywide Diversity Program, October 14, 2015
- Moderator, "Examining Opening Statement Strategies for Plaintiffs and Defense Attorneys," 2015 Annual Meeting of The State Bar of California , Anaheim, California, October 8, 2015
- Moderator, "Why Diversity and Inclusion Issues Still Matter: Eliminating Bias in the Legal Profession and Our Community," BASF & Duane Morris Citywide Diversity Program, October 29, 2014
- Speaker, "Young Lawyer Track–Mediation Boot Camp 101: Preparing Your Coverage Case for Resolution," Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee CLE Seminar, March 7, 2014
- Moderator, "The Elimination of Bias In The Legal Profession; Navigating Issues of Race, Gender, and Sexual Orientation In Law Firms," ABTL, BASF & Duane Morris Citywide Diversity Program, July 11, 2013
- Speaker, "How to Make Partner During Uncertain Economic Times," Association of Business Trial Lawyers, San Francisco, June 25, 2012
- Speaker, "Please Excuse the Delay: The Consequences of Untimely Notice, Slow Investigation, and the Failure to Communicate" American Bar Association's Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee CLE Seminar, Tucson, Arizona, March 2, 2012
- Mr. Evans is a frequent guest speaker for the Young Black Scholars Program, the 100 Black Men of Los Angeles, and the NAACP.
- Keynote Speaker, "Celebrate the Excellence Within," 26th Annual Young Black Scholars Celebration of Achievement, Los Angeles, June 3, 2012
- Speaker, "Advanced Issues in Foreclosure," National Business Institute Seminar, Oakland, California, July 14, 2011
- Speaker, "Diversity Issues in the Workplace," Philadelphia, May 2009
- Moderator, "Businesses in the Courtroom: Getting Your Message Across!" panel discussion, Association of Business Trial Lawyers' 2008 Annual Seminar, Kauai, Hawaii, September 24-26, 2008
- Speaker, "Business Development for Minority Lawyers in Corporate Law Firms," Philadelphia, May 2008
- "How to Avoid Getting Wacked By The Doctrine of Reasonable Expectations," American Bar Association Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee Annual Meeting, Tucson, Arizona, March 1, 2008
- Gave presentation regarding marketing and business development at the Duane Morris National Convention in October 2007
- Co-Presenter, "Analyzing Claims for Bodily Injury, Property Damage, Personal Injury, and Advertising Injury Under Primary and Excess Liability Policies," San Francisco, California, December 15, 2005
- Spoke at Duane Morris' First Annual Diversity Retreat in May 2007