Practice Emphasis and Experience
Meet Tiffany Cartwright
Tiffany is dedicated to helping her clients stand up for their rights against powerful institutions, whether a corporation, a police department, or a prosecutor. Since joining MacDonald Hoague & Bayless in 2014, she has focused on civil rights and employment litigation, with an emphasis on cases involving police misconduct, gender discrimination, and disability discrimination.
Tiffany is a strong believer in the power of preparation and is committed to knowing the facts of her cases inside and out. Her clients appreciate her attention to detail and ability to translate complicated cases into compelling legal arguments. She is a passionate written and oral advocate for her clients at all stages of a case, whether in pre-trial settlement negotiations, at trial, or on appeal.
Tiffany graduated from Stanford Law School in 2010, where she was a member of the Stanford Supreme Court Litigation Clinic, gaining a wide range of appellate experience writing petitions for review, merits briefs, and amicus briefs filed in the United States Supreme Court. During law school, Tiffany also worked at the Federal Public Defender’s office in Seattle and at the United States Department of Justice Public Integrity Unit, which prosecutes public corruption cases.
After law school, Tiffany served as a judicial clerk to the Honorable Betty Binns Fletcher of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and the Honorable Dana Fabe of the Alaska Supreme Court. Prior to joining MacDonald Hoague and Bayless, Tiffany was a litigation associate at Jenner & Block in Chicago, where she litigated a variety of cases at the state and federal level and maintained an active pro bono practice focusing on death penalty appeals. She was a co-author of an important amicus brief relied on by the United States Supreme Court in Hall v. Florida, which held that Florida’s definition of intellectual disability in death penalty cases violated the Eighth Amendment’s ban on cruel and unusual punishment.
A representative sample of Tiffany’s achievements include:
- A $15 million jury verdict for the family of an unarmed man killed by a SWAT sniper while he held his four-year-old son in his arms.
- A $2 million arbitration award against Amgen for failing to accommodate an employee’s disability and wrongfully firing him after he sustained a head injury on a business trip.
- A unanimous Washington Supreme Court decision holding that Western State Hospital discriminated against it employees by making staff assignments based on race.
- A judgment against the City of Seattle based on false arrest and malicious prosecution claims brought on behalf of a woman falsely accused of stealing from the elderly woman for whom she worked as a caregiver.
- Several judgments and settlements against the Tukwila Police Department arising out of excessive force used against people stopped or arrested for minor crimes. One of these cases also resulted in the Tukwila Police Department changing its pepper-spray policies.
The Seattle Times, “Jury awards more than $15m to family of unarmed black man killed by SWAT sniper in Fife” https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/crime/jury-awards-nearly-15m-to-family-of-unarmed-black-man-killed-by-swat-sniper-in-fife/
Crosscut, “After $15 million verdict, a Q&A about police shootings” http://crosscut.com/2017/07/fife-police-shooting-15-million-lawsuit-lawyers-talk/
The Seattle Times, “Ruling: Race-based staffing decision at Western State Hospital violates law” http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/supreme-court-race-based-staffing-decision-at-western-state-hospital-violates-law/
The Seattle Times, “Handcuffed, pepper-sprayed man to get $300k from Tukwila in excessive-force arrest case” http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/crime/tukwila-to-pay-300k-in-excessive-force-arrest-case/
The Seattle Times, “With just 79 police officers, Tukwila pays out $1.5M to settle civil-rights lawsuits” http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/crime/with-just-79-police-officers-tukwila-pays-out-15m-to-settle-civil-rights-lawsuits/
Professional and Civic Involvement
Washington State Bar Association
Federal Bar Association for the Western District of Washington – Local Rules Committee
Washington State Association for Justice
Washington Employment Lawyers Association
Washington Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
BA Political Science, with distinction, Stanford University (2007)
JD Stanford Law School (2010)
Washington, admitted 2011
Illinois, admitted 2012
Northern District of Illinois, admitted 2012
Western District of Washington, admitted 2014
Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, admitted 2014
Honors and Awards
Hilmer Oehlmann, Jr. Award for Excellence in Research and Writing
Gerald Gunther Prize for Outstanding Performance in Property, Constitutional Litigation, White Collar Criminal Law, Constitutional Law III