Matthew W. Powell joined Wilke, Fleury, Hoffelt, Gould & Birney, LLP in 1984 and became a partner in 1991. He received his Bachelor's Degree from California State University, Sacramento in 1981 and his Juris Doctorate from the University of California at Berkeley, Boalt Hall School of Law, in 1984. Mr. Powell was licensed to practice law in California in 1984.Areas of Current EmphasisMr. Powell is a litigation partner practicing in both state and federal court. Defined broadly, Mr. Powell's expertise is complex business litigation. The cases he has litigated range from real estate transactions to environmental contamination to construction disputes. However, Mr. Powell specializes in defending professional liability actions against accountants and accounting firms.Mr. Powell defends accounting firms in actions arising from audit services, tax services and litigation support services. He litigates cases ranging from securities fraud class actions to common law negligence and fraud actions to unfair competition actions. In addition, Mr. Powell represents accountants and accounting firms in administrative proceedings before the Securities and Exchange Commission and the California Board of Accountancy.Mr. Powell also appeared as counsel for the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants ("AICPA") in Bily v. Arthur Young & Co., 3 Cal.4th 370 (1992), in which the California Supreme Court held that an auditor owes no general duty of care to persons other than the auditor's client. More recently, Mr. Powell appeared as counsel for the AICPA in Grafton Partners L.P., et al. v. The Superior Court of Alameda County (PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP), 36 Cal.4th 944 (2005) where the California Supreme Court held the right to a jury trial cannot be waived by contract.Professional AssociationsMr. Powell is a member of the California Bar Association and the Federal Bar Association. He is also a member of the Sacramento County Bar Association. From 1997 through 1999, Mr. Powell served as Chairman of the Program Committee of the Sacramento Chapter of the Federal Bar Association. In 2002, Mr. Powell was the President of the Sacramento Chapter of the Federal Bar Association. In 2003 and 2004, Mr. Powell was the Chairman of the Program Committee for the Judicial Conference of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of California.Court AdmissionsMr. Powell is admitted to practice before all state courts in California. He is also admitted to practice in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of California, the United States District Court for the Northern District of California, the United States District Court for the Southern District of California and the United States District Court for the Central District of California. In addition, he is admitted to practice before the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.