Kevin J. Hamilton focuses his practice on labor and employment counseling and litigation. Mr. Hamilton has practiced law with Perkins Coie for more than 30 years and has been a partner for more than 25 years, addressing through counseling, negotiation, or litigation, a broad range of key issues critical to the modern workplace. Mr. Hamilton has extensive experience with noncompetition, trade secret, discrimination, multiple plaintiff, and wrongful discharge litigation. Mr. Hamilton chairs the firm's nationally recognized Retail & Consumer Products industry group, including more than 260 lawyers throughout the firm who focus on issues across the spectrum confronting the retail and consumer products industry.
Mr. Hamilton has worked closely with a wide variety of clients on employment-related issues, including Starbucks, Microsoft, Vulcan Inc., Eddie Bauer, The Boeing Company, Intellectual Ventures, Puget Energy, Amazon.com, F-5 Networks, Outdoor Voices, Helly Hansen, Alpha Technologies, and J.Crew, among others.
He has broad and significant trial experience, having represented clients in litigation in Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nevada, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Texas, Virginia, and Washington. In 2021, Mr. Hamilton led a team of lawyers in pursuing trade secret misappropriation, breach of contract, and related claims against a group of six scientists on behalf of one of our largest clients. After two and a half years of litigation and a three-week trial, the team secured a sweeping victory, including injunctive relief and an attorneys’ fee award and dismissal of the wrongful discharge counterclaims.
In addition to his employment practice, Mr. Hamilton is also one of the nation’s leading election lawyers. In 2020, Mr. Hamilton led teams of lawyers involved in dozens of voting rights cases across the country, including Arizona, Georgia, Iowa, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nevada, and Texas. Mr. Hamilton led a team of a dozen lawyers representing the Biden-Harris campaign in managing the recount of nearly five million ballots in the U.S. presidential election in Georgia, the second largest recount in American history and in post-election litigation in Georgia, Nevada, Michigan, Minnesota, and elsewhere. His deep experience with election and political law also includes recounts, election contests, redistricting, Voting Rights Act litigation, campaign finance issues, and the administration of elections. Mr. Hamilton has represented numerous candidates in statewide recounts, including President Joe Biden in the 2020 recounts in Georgia, Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema (2018), North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper (2016), Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring (2013), Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton (2010), Minnesota Senator Al Franken (2008), Washington Governor Christine Gregoire (2004), and Washington Senator Maria Cantwell (2000). Mr. Hamilton represented both Senator Franken and Governor Gregoire as trial counsel in election contests in 2005 (Gregoire) and 2009 (Franken). Mr. Hamilton represented President Joe Biden in multiple election contests over the 2020 election in Georgia, Nevada, and Minnesota.
Mr. Hamilton has represented Democrats in litigation challenging congressional and state legislative redistricting plans in Florida, Minnesota, Nevada, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Texas, and Virginia. In the 2016 election cycle, Mr. Hamilton was involved in litigation over voter registration deadlines in Arizona, Florida, and North Carolina.
Other election law clients have included U.S. Senator Kyrsten Sinema (2018), the Washington State Democrats (on-going), Jay Inslee for Governor (2012, 2016, and 2020), Jay Inslee for President (2020), U.S. Senator Patty Murray (2004, 2010, and 2016), U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell (2000, 2006, 2012), Darcy Burner for Congress (2006 and 2008), Suzan DelBene (2010), Washington Families Standing Together (supporting Referendum 71, 2009), King County Executive Dow Constantine (2009), and various other federal, state, and local candidates.
Mr. Hamilton’s extensive trial experience won him admission to the American College of Trial Lawyers at a relatively young age and to the prestigious American Law Institute.